|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Locale Reference||atc facility : cma.tower|
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : radar|
|Qualification||controller : non radar|
|Experience||controller non radar : 14|
controller time certified in position1 : 14
|Anomaly||other anomaly other|
|Independent Detector||other controllera|
|Resolutory Action||none taken : anomaly accepted|
|ATC Facility||radar equipment : cma.tower|
For the past several days; the d-brite radar at cma ATCT has been marginally usable with altitudes on secondary targets sometimes not readable. Occasionally; especially with limited visibility (which seems to interfere with the microwave radar signal) radar information is non-existent. The airspace safety is compromised; especially in an environment in which pilots are accustomed to receiving TA's/alerts. Recently; when the radar was functioning correctly; a controller noticed the unsafe proximity of 2 aircraft as indicated on the radar. The controller alerted one of the aircraft which took evasive action and in the estimation of the pilot himself prevented a collision. If the radar information had not been available; or was marginal as it currently is; this situation could have resulted in multiple deaths. As with past failures of this nature; it appears that FAA technicians are not allowed access to the point mugu radar equipment on weekends (which is the busiest traffic in general). Despite the fact that this situation has been repeatedly complained about; there has been no cooperation from the military in facilitating equipment access to my knowledge. I have been informed that there is new equipment which was to have been installed but that personnel have been sent to a higher priority facility to work on other issues.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: CMA CTLR EXPRESSED CONCERN REGARDING D-BRITE FUNCTIONALITY AND FAA MAINT LACK OF ACCESS TO REPAIR SAME ON MIL FAC DURING WEEKENDS.
Narrative: FOR THE PAST SEVERAL DAYS; THE D-BRITE RADAR AT CMA ATCT HAS BEEN MARGINALLY USABLE WITH ALTS ON SECONDARY TARGETS SOMETIMES NOT READABLE. OCCASIONALLY; ESPECIALLY WITH LIMITED VISIBILITY (WHICH SEEMS TO INTERFERE WITH THE MICROWAVE RADAR SIGNAL) RADAR INFO IS NON-EXISTENT. THE AIRSPACE SAFETY IS COMPROMISED; ESPECIALLY IN AN ENVIRONMENT IN WHICH PLTS ARE ACCUSTOMED TO RECEIVING TA'S/ALERTS. RECENTLY; WHEN THE RADAR WAS FUNCTIONING CORRECTLY; A CTLR NOTICED THE UNSAFE PROX OF 2 ACFT AS INDICATED ON THE RADAR. THE CTLR ALERTED ONE OF THE ACFT WHICH TOOK EVASIVE ACTION AND IN THE ESTIMATION OF THE PLT HIMSELF PREVENTED A COLLISION. IF THE RADAR INFO HAD NOT BEEN AVAILABLE; OR WAS MARGINAL AS IT CURRENTLY IS; THIS SITUATION COULD HAVE RESULTED IN MULTIPLE DEATHS. AS WITH PAST FAILURES OF THIS NATURE; IT APPEARS THAT FAA TECHNICIANS ARE NOT ALLOWED ACCESS TO THE POINT MUGU RADAR EQUIP ON WEEKENDS (WHICH IS THE BUSIEST TFC IN GENERAL). DESPITE THE FACT THAT THIS SITUATION HAS BEEN REPEATEDLY COMPLAINED ABOUT; THERE HAS BEEN NO COOPERATION FROM THE MIL IN FACILITATING EQUIP ACCESS TO MY KNOWLEDGE. I HAVE BEEN INFORMED THAT THERE IS NEW EQUIP WHICH WAS TO HAVE BEEN INSTALLED BUT THAT PERSONNEL HAVE BEEN SENT TO A HIGHER PRIORITY FACILITY TO WORK ON OTHER ISSUES.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of January 2009 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.