|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||0601 To 1200|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : mgm.tower|
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : local|
|Qualification||controller : radar|
|Experience||controller radar : 20|
controller time certified in position1 : 2.0
controller time certified in position2 : 5
|Anomaly||other anomaly other|
|Independent Detector||other controllera|
|Resolutory Action||none taken : anomaly accepted|
|Problem Areas||ATC Facility|
|Primary Problem||ATC Facility|
|ATC Facility||other physical facility|
Upon opening the control tower this morning; I found all 12 windows to be completely covered on the exterior with condensation. The tower has an external sprinkler system to rinse the condensation off the windows; but it only works on 5 of the 12 windows. The rest of the system has been out of service for a couple of months. Having 58% of the windows unusable makes it impossible to see the final approach course for runway 28 and very hard to see the numbers to ensure safety of departures. Some towers have a hose on the catwalk to allow the controllers to hose off the windows; but we don't have a hose; plus access to the catwalk requires some physical prowess as you must exit through a small door (about 30 inches X 30 inches) from a wall-mounted ladder. And of course; we would have to do this in business casual attire. Plus; only one person opens the tower cabin attendant and this would require extra time; possibly resulting in the late opening of the tower. It would seem that the FAA should invest the money to repair systems that impact safety; even if they aren't the more glamorous or obvious ones.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: MGM CTLR EXPRESSED CONCERN REGARDING TOWER VIS RESTRS CAUSED BY CONDENSATION; CITING LIMITED CAPACITY OF EXTERNAL SPRINKLER SYSTEM AS A CONTRIBUTING FACTOR.
Narrative: UPON OPENING THE CTL TOWER THIS MORNING; I FOUND ALL 12 WINDOWS TO BE COMPLETELY COVERED ON THE EXTERIOR WITH CONDENSATION. THE TOWER HAS AN EXTERNAL SPRINKLER SYSTEM TO RINSE THE CONDENSATION OFF THE WINDOWS; BUT IT ONLY WORKS ON 5 OF THE 12 WINDOWS. THE REST OF THE SYSTEM HAS BEEN OUT OF SERVICE FOR A COUPLE OF MONTHS. HAVING 58% OF THE WINDOWS UNUSABLE MAKES IT IMPOSSIBLE TO SEE THE FINAL APCH COURSE FOR RWY 28 AND VERY HARD TO SEE THE NUMBERS TO ENSURE SAFETY OF DEPS. SOME TOWERS HAVE A HOSE ON THE CATWALK TO ALLOW THE CTLRS TO HOSE OFF THE WINDOWS; BUT WE DON'T HAVE A HOSE; PLUS ACCESS TO THE CATWALK REQUIRES SOME PHYSICAL PROWESS AS YOU MUST EXIT THROUGH A SMALL DOOR (ABOUT 30 INCHES X 30 INCHES) FROM A WALL-MOUNTED LADDER. AND OF COURSE; WE WOULD HAVE TO DO THIS IN BUSINESS CASUAL ATTIRE. PLUS; ONLY ONE PERSON OPENS THE TOWER CAB AND THIS WOULD REQUIRE EXTRA TIME; POSSIBLY RESULTING IN THE LATE OPENING OF THE TOWER. IT WOULD SEEM THAT THE FAA SHOULD INVEST THE MONEY TO REPAIR SYSTEMS THAT IMPACT SAFETY; EVEN IF THEY AREN'T THE MORE GLAMOROUS OR OBVIOUS ONES.
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.