|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1201 To 1800|
|Altitude||msl single value : 5000|
|Controlling Facilities||tracon : l30.tracon|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||Experimental|
|Operating Under FAR Part||Part 91|
|Flight Phase||descent : intermediate altitude|
descent : approach
|Route In Use||approach : visual|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : private|
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 30|
flight time total : 145
flight time type : 55
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : approach|
|Anomaly||airspace violation : entry|
non adherence : far
non adherence : published procedure
|Independent Detector||other controllera|
other flight crewa
|Resolutory Action||none taken : detected after the fact|
|Consequence||faa : reviewed incident with flight crew|
|Problem Areas||ATC Human Performance|
Flight Crew Human Performance
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
On sep/fri/03 at approximately XA00, I was approaching to land at henderson, nv, airport from the northwest. My plan was to stay under the las vegas class B airspace and land at henderson. Approaching from the northwest there is a mountain range you must cross just before entering the las vegas area valley. Clearing the mountains, I contacted las vegas approach control, indicated my intentions and was given a transponder code. I began a rapid descent to remain clear of the floors of the rapidly approaching restr airspace. At a point where I needed to be under 5000 ft MSL the las vegas approach controller called and instructed me to remain at or above 5000 ft for the traffic clearance. Realizing that this could put me into the class B airspace, I called the controller to inquire if I was 'cleared into the class B airspace. His response was 'negative, remain clear of the class B airspace.' faced with the controller's instructions to remain clear but maintain at or above 5000 ft MSL in an area where the floor of the airspace was this same altitude, and there was thermal activity frequently causing up to 200 ft altitude variations, I was going to have to work very hard to remain clear. Shortly, the controller called and said I was then clear to continue my descent into henderson. Now comfortably clear of the restr airspace and approaching henderson, I called henderson tower, where I was given instructions to report crossing highway 15, and to prepare for a right traffic entry to runway 17R. I responded to henderson that I would do my best, but I was unfamiliar with the area. As I got closer, henderson tower called to ask if I had the airport in sight and I replied that I believed that I did. He said I was in sight and to head directly for the tower then enter right traffic for landing runway 17R. This set me up for somewhat of a reverse 45 degree entry to the traffic pattern, but was manageable. I flew what I felt was a standard r-hand traffic pattern, and as I looked over my right shoulder for the position of the end of the runway, I saw it at just 45 degrees to my right, and began my right base turn, at which time the tower called and said I needed to turn to remain clear of the las class B airspace. I indicated that I was turning base then. He then cleared me to land on runway 17R. I acknowledged. Upon landing at henderson the tower asked me to call las approach and they would given me the phone number. I 'gulped' knowing this was not a good thing. After securing the plane, I called las approach and indicated my aircraft n-number and name and that henderson had asked me to call. The person on the phone indicated that I had violated their class B airspace and was in trouble. I immediately thought that the incursion had happened out at the initial area where I thought I had been given the 'remain at or above 5000 ft MSL' area, but the controller indicated that the incursion had really taken place in the henderson pattern. I indicated that I was sorry and I was unfamiliar with the area and also somewhat of a rusty pilot. The controller reminded me of the importance of remaining clear of the airspace and that there would be no formal violation. I thanked him and said I would avoid the area altogether in the future. I had studied the sectional, tac chart and the local chart guide before arriving in the area and felt that I was appropriately familiar with the area. Upon further study of the area where I had violated the class B airspace, I could see that it is extremely easy to violate the class B airspace if on right traffic to the south henderson runways. I find this class B airspace 'notch' to allow operations at henderson to be unreasonably tight and can frequently cause this sort of violation. My traffic pattern was obviously slightly too wide and allowed me to enter the class B airspace, even though I was flying what I believed to be a standard pattern. I feel the incident was my responsibility in that I was the pilot of the aircraft, however, I was unable to avoid the airspace incursion even with the assistance of henderson tower. I believe that the size of the 'notch' in the class B airspace boundary in this area is unreasonably small and will cause unnecessary violations to occur in the future.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: RV6 PLT ENTERS LAS CLASS B WHILE IN HND, NV, TFC PATTERN.
Narrative: ON SEP/FRI/03 AT APPROX XA00, I WAS APCHING TO LAND AT HENDERSON, NV, ARPT FROM THE NW. MY PLAN WAS TO STAY UNDER THE LAS VEGAS CLASS B AIRSPACE AND LAND AT HENDERSON. APCHING FROM THE NW THERE IS A MOUNTAIN RANGE YOU MUST CROSS JUST BEFORE ENTERING THE LAS VEGAS AREA VALLEY. CLRING THE MOUNTAINS, I CONTACTED LAS VEGAS APCH CTL, INDICATED MY INTENTIONS AND WAS GIVEN A XPONDER CODE. I BEGAN A RAPID DSCNT TO REMAIN CLR OF THE FLOORS OF THE RAPIDLY APCHING RESTR AIRSPACE. AT A POINT WHERE I NEEDED TO BE UNDER 5000 FT MSL THE LAS VEGAS APCH CTLR CALLED AND INSTRUCTED ME TO REMAIN AT OR ABOVE 5000 FT FOR THE TFC CLRNC. REALIZING THAT THIS COULD PUT ME INTO THE CLASS B AIRSPACE, I CALLED THE CTLR TO INQUIRE IF I WAS 'CLRED INTO THE CLASS B AIRSPACE. HIS RESPONSE WAS 'NEGATIVE, REMAIN CLR OF THE CLASS B AIRSPACE.' FACED WITH THE CTLR'S INSTRUCTIONS TO REMAIN CLR BUT MAINTAIN AT OR ABOVE 5000 FT MSL IN AN AREA WHERE THE FLOOR OF THE AIRSPACE WAS THIS SAME ALT, AND THERE WAS THERMAL ACTIVITY FREQUENTLY CAUSING UP TO 200 FT ALT VARIATIONS, I WAS GOING TO HAVE TO WORK VERY HARD TO REMAIN CLR. SHORTLY, THE CTLR CALLED AND SAID I WAS THEN CLR TO CONTINUE MY DSCNT INTO HENDERSON. NOW COMFORTABLY CLR OF THE RESTR AIRSPACE AND APCHING HENDERSON, I CALLED HENDERSON TWR, WHERE I WAS GIVEN INSTRUCTIONS TO RPT XING HWY 15, AND TO PREPARE FOR A R TFC ENTRY TO RWY 17R. I RESPONDED TO HENDERSON THAT I WOULD DO MY BEST, BUT I WAS UNFAMILIAR WITH THE AREA. AS I GOT CLOSER, HENDERSON TWR CALLED TO ASK IF I HAD THE ARPT IN SIGHT AND I REPLIED THAT I BELIEVED THAT I DID. HE SAID I WAS IN SIGHT AND TO HEAD DIRECTLY FOR THE TWR THEN ENTER R TFC FOR LNDG RWY 17R. THIS SET ME UP FOR SOMEWHAT OF A REVERSE 45 DEG ENTRY TO THE TFC PATTERN, BUT WAS MANAGEABLE. I FLEW WHAT I FELT WAS A STANDARD R-HAND TFC PATTERN, AND AS I LOOKED OVER MY R SHOULDER FOR THE POS OF THE END OF THE RWY, I SAW IT AT JUST 45 DEGS TO MY R, AND BEGAN MY R BASE TURN, AT WHICH TIME THE TWR CALLED AND SAID I NEEDED TO TURN TO REMAIN CLR OF THE LAS CLASS B AIRSPACE. I INDICATED THAT I WAS TURNING BASE THEN. HE THEN CLRED ME TO LAND ON RWY 17R. I ACKNOWLEDGED. UPON LNDG AT HENDERSON THE TWR ASKED ME TO CALL LAS APCH AND THEY WOULD GIVEN ME THE PHONE NUMBER. I 'GULPED' KNOWING THIS WAS NOT A GOOD THING. AFTER SECURING THE PLANE, I CALLED LAS APCH AND INDICATED MY ACFT N-NUMBER AND NAME AND THAT HENDERSON HAD ASKED ME TO CALL. THE PERSON ON THE PHONE INDICATED THAT I HAD VIOLATED THEIR CLASS B AIRSPACE AND WAS IN TROUBLE. I IMMEDIATELY THOUGHT THAT THE INCURSION HAD HAPPENED OUT AT THE INITIAL AREA WHERE I THOUGHT I HAD BEEN GIVEN THE 'REMAIN AT OR ABOVE 5000 FT MSL' AREA, BUT THE CTLR INDICATED THAT THE INCURSION HAD REALLY TAKEN PLACE IN THE HENDERSON PATTERN. I INDICATED THAT I WAS SORRY AND I WAS UNFAMILIAR WITH THE AREA AND ALSO SOMEWHAT OF A RUSTY PLT. THE CTLR REMINDED ME OF THE IMPORTANCE OF REMAINING CLR OF THE AIRSPACE AND THAT THERE WOULD BE NO FORMAL VIOLATION. I THANKED HIM AND SAID I WOULD AVOID THE AREA ALTOGETHER IN THE FUTURE. I HAD STUDIED THE SECTIONAL, TAC CHART AND THE LCL CHART GUIDE BEFORE ARRIVING IN THE AREA AND FELT THAT I WAS APPROPRIATELY FAMILIAR WITH THE AREA. UPON FURTHER STUDY OF THE AREA WHERE I HAD VIOLATED THE CLASS B AIRSPACE, I COULD SEE THAT IT IS EXTREMELY EASY TO VIOLATE THE CLASS B AIRSPACE IF ON R TFC TO THE S HENDERSON RWYS. I FIND THIS CLASS B AIRSPACE 'NOTCH' TO ALLOW OPS AT HENDERSON TO BE UNREASONABLY TIGHT AND CAN FREQUENTLY CAUSE THIS SORT OF VIOLATION. MY TFC PATTERN WAS OBVIOUSLY SLIGHTLY TOO WIDE AND ALLOWED ME TO ENTER THE CLASS B AIRSPACE, EVEN THOUGH I WAS FLYING WHAT I BELIEVED TO BE A STANDARD PATTERN. I FEEL THE INCIDENT WAS MY RESPONSIBILITY IN THAT I WAS THE PLT OF THE ACFT, HOWEVER, I WAS UNABLE TO AVOID THE AIRSPACE INCURSION EVEN WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF HENDERSON TWR. I BELIEVE THAT THE SIZE OF THE 'NOTCH' IN THE CLASS B AIRSPACE BOUNDARY IN THIS AREA IS UNREASONABLY SMALL AND WILL CAUSE UNNECESSARY VIOLATIONS TO OCCUR IN THE FUTURE.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of July 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.