|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||0601 To 1200|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : pmd|
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 10700|
msl bound upper : 11000
|Controlling Facilities||artcc : zla|
|Operator||general aviation : instructional|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, High Wing, 1 Eng, Fixed Gear|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Route In Use||arrival other|
arrival star : star
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : instrument|
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 38|
flight time total : 900
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : radar|
|Qualification||controller : radar|
|Anomaly||altitude deviation : excursion from assigned altitude|
non adherence : published procedure
non adherence : clearance
|Independent Detector||other controllera|
|Resolutory Action||controller : issued new clearance|
flight crew : returned to intended course or assigned course
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||Pilot Deviation|
I wanted to maintain IFR proficiency and hence filed an IFR flight plan from sac to ont on a cavu day. Prior to approaching the palmdale VOR I was given the following clearance: 'cleared to the ontario airport via the cajon 5 arrival' by los angeles center on 127.1. Later edw approach was controling the flight just prior to arriving at the palmdale airport on 126.1. Since cajon 5 arrival indicates the procedure to follow the 104 degree right and shows 10700' MEA (I was at 11000'), I wanted to verify if my clearance still was as given to me by los angeles center. I asked edw approach on 125.1 to verify if I was cleared to ont via cajon 5 arrival, while still at 11000' and prior to arriving at palmdale VOR. There was a pause, then he said, 'affirmative.' at palmdale I reported leaving 11000'. Shortly thereafter the flight was handed over to la center on 128.2. By the time communication was established, I was at 10700' (the published MEA for the segment). The controller asked to verify altitude. When I replied 10700', she was unhappy and asked me to climb back to 11000'. Shortly thereafter the flight was handed over to ont approach on 127.25. They cleared the descent and vectored the flight to ont. I discussed the above matter with a member of FSDO sacramento office on 6.thu/88. His opinion was that perhaps she did not know the MEA's for 'cajon 5 arrival,' for if it is a published procedure, you are expected to follow it. Reporter reiterated that he had contacted an FAA employee at a FSDO and he said that aircraft should descend to the MEA when flying a STAR as the reporter had done in this case. Counseled reporter to be aware of the difference between stars and profile dscnts.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: PLT THOUGHT HE WAS CLEARED TO DESCEND TO THE MEA.
Narrative: I WANTED TO MAINTAIN IFR PROFICIENCY AND HENCE FILED AN IFR FLT PLAN FROM SAC TO ONT ON A CAVU DAY. PRIOR TO APCHING THE PALMDALE VOR I WAS GIVEN THE FOLLOWING CLRNC: 'CLRED TO THE ONTARIO ARPT VIA THE CAJON 5 ARR' BY LOS ANGELES CENTER ON 127.1. LATER EDW APCH WAS CTLING THE FLT JUST PRIOR TO ARRIVING AT THE PALMDALE ARPT ON 126.1. SINCE CAJON 5 ARR INDICATES THE PROC TO FOLLOW THE 104 DEG R AND SHOWS 10700' MEA (I WAS AT 11000'), I WANTED TO VERIFY IF MY CLRNC STILL WAS AS GIVEN TO ME BY LOS ANGELES CENTER. I ASKED EDW APCH ON 125.1 TO VERIFY IF I WAS CLRED TO ONT VIA CAJON 5 ARR, WHILE STILL AT 11000' AND PRIOR TO ARRIVING AT PALMDALE VOR. THERE WAS A PAUSE, THEN HE SAID, 'AFFIRMATIVE.' AT PALMDALE I RPTED LEAVING 11000'. SHORTLY THEREAFTER THE FLT WAS HANDED OVER TO LA CENTER ON 128.2. BY THE TIME COM WAS ESTABLISHED, I WAS AT 10700' (THE PUBLISHED MEA FOR THE SEGMENT). THE CTLR ASKED TO VERIFY ALT. WHEN I REPLIED 10700', SHE WAS UNHAPPY AND ASKED ME TO CLB BACK TO 11000'. SHORTLY THEREAFTER THE FLT WAS HANDED OVER TO ONT APCH ON 127.25. THEY CLRED THE DSCNT AND VECTORED THE FLT TO ONT. I DISCUSSED THE ABOVE MATTER WITH A MEMBER OF FSDO SACRAMENTO OFFICE ON 6.THU/88. HIS OPINION WAS THAT PERHAPS SHE DID NOT KNOW THE MEA'S FOR 'CAJON 5 ARR,' FOR IF IT IS A PUBLISHED PROC, YOU ARE EXPECTED TO FOLLOW IT. RPTR REITERATED THAT HE HAD CONTACTED AN FAA EMPLOYEE AT A FSDO AND HE SAID THAT ACFT SHOULD DSND TO THE MEA WHEN FLYING A STAR AS THE RPTR HAD DONE IN THIS CASE. COUNSELED RPTR TO BE AWARE OF THE DIFFERENCE BTWN STARS AND PROFILE DSCNTS.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of August 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.