|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1201 To 1800|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : day|
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 8000|
msl bound upper : 8000
|Controlling Facilities||tracon : day|
|Operator||general aviation : personal|
|Make Model Name||Small Aircraft, High Wing, 1 Eng, Fixed Gear|
|Flight Phase||cruise other|
|Function||flight crew : single pilot|
|Qualification||pilot : instrument|
pilot : cfi
pilot : commercial
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 250|
flight time total : 1300
flight time type : 200
|Affiliation||government : faa|
|Function||controller : approach|
|Qualification||controller : developmental|
|Anomaly||inflight encounter : weather|
other anomaly other
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||none taken : unable|
none taken : anomaly accepted
|Air Traffic Incident||other|
While en route through dayton airspace from uyf to 418, I was being worked by what appeared to be a deviation controller. 5-10 mins before this incident another aircraft asked the controller if she was painting any WX and she replied that she was not. I am not sure of her exact phraseology. I wondered at the time if she just had the WX filtered out. Soon after this I entered an area of building cumulus clouds and shortly thereafter I noticed an area that was becoming very dark. I asked if she was painting any WX in front of me and she replied she was not. I asked her if she wasn't painting any or if she had the WX mode turned off. She replied that she had the WX filtered and for me to contact the next controller (also dayton). During this exchange of comments the turbulence started building and I told her that I would have to deviate around the storm. She told me to request it with the next controller. I switched frequencys and before I could transmit the new controller approved my request to deviate (he called me first). It seemed to me that whoever had been working with the deviation had relayed my request. After this frequency change, there were numerous aircraft (including air carrier) deviating around this thunderstorm, with the help of ATC. My main comment is that when there is WX (thunderstorms) in an area, it is wrong for ATC to filter this out, thus preventing aircraft from receiving a vital service just for training purposes. I was a deviation controller at one time, and I understand the need to push toward your limits if you are to improve. Obviously, having the WX turned on would have overloaded or distracted this controller. I feel the trainer stretched things too far when he allowed his student to filter out a thunderstorm. There are people who would have taken her comments to mean that what they were seeing wasn't that severe bored and straight through it. Callback conversation with reporter revealed the following: reporter was called, mainly, to discuss the capabilities of terminal ATC facs in helping flight crews to avoid severe WX. It was explained to the reporter, a commuter pilot and former ARTCC deviation controller, that terminal radars systems and ARTS IIIA facs do not have the kind of WX detection capability that is needed to give pilots the best chance to avoid wind shear and storm cells. The ASR-8 and ARTS IIIA routinely filter out the areas of heaviest precipitation and the controller only sees areas that are outlined by the ARTS computer which denote the principal areas of moisture. Although it may be prudent to avoid these areas of precipitation, if a controller vectors an aircraft away from these areas, he or she may vector the aircraft into the area of most severe turbulence or wind shear. Analyst and reporter agreed that too few professional pilots take the time to visit ATC facs to find out what can and cannot be done by a controller in a severe WX situation.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: PLT COMPLAINT ABOUT THE LACK OF WX AVOIDANCE SERVICE FROM CTLR.
Narrative: WHILE ENRTE THROUGH DAYTON AIRSPACE FROM UYF TO 418, I WAS BEING WORKED BY WHAT APPEARED TO BE A DEV CTLR. 5-10 MINS BEFORE THIS INCIDENT ANOTHER ACFT ASKED THE CTLR IF SHE WAS PAINTING ANY WX AND SHE REPLIED THAT SHE WAS NOT. I AM NOT SURE OF HER EXACT PHRASEOLOGY. I WONDERED AT THE TIME IF SHE JUST HAD THE WX FILTERED OUT. SOON AFTER THIS I ENTERED AN AREA OF BUILDING CUMULUS CLOUDS AND SHORTLY THEREAFTER I NOTICED AN AREA THAT WAS BECOMING VERY DARK. I ASKED IF SHE WAS PAINTING ANY WX IN FRONT OF ME AND SHE REPLIED SHE WAS NOT. I ASKED HER IF SHE WASN'T PAINTING ANY OR IF SHE HAD THE WX MODE TURNED OFF. SHE REPLIED THAT SHE HAD THE WX FILTERED AND FOR ME TO CONTACT THE NEXT CTLR (ALSO DAYTON). DURING THIS EXCHANGE OF COMMENTS THE TURB STARTED BUILDING AND I TOLD HER THAT I WOULD HAVE TO DEVIATE AROUND THE STORM. SHE TOLD ME TO REQUEST IT WITH THE NEXT CTLR. I SWITCHED FREQS AND BEFORE I COULD XMIT THE NEW CTLR APPROVED MY REQUEST TO DEVIATE (HE CALLED ME FIRST). IT SEEMED TO ME THAT WHOEVER HAD BEEN WORKING WITH THE DEV HAD RELAYED MY REQUEST. AFTER THIS FREQ CHANGE, THERE WERE NUMEROUS ACFT (INCLUDING ACR) DEVIATING AROUND THIS TSTM, WITH THE HELP OF ATC. MY MAIN COMMENT IS THAT WHEN THERE IS WX (TSTMS) IN AN AREA, IT IS WRONG FOR ATC TO FILTER THIS OUT, THUS PREVENTING ACFT FROM RECEIVING A VITAL SVC JUST FOR TRNING PURPOSES. I WAS A DEV CTLR AT ONE TIME, AND I UNDERSTAND THE NEED TO PUSH TOWARD YOUR LIMITS IF YOU ARE TO IMPROVE. OBVIOUSLY, HAVING THE WX TURNED ON WOULD HAVE OVERLOADED OR DISTRACTED THIS CTLR. I FEEL THE TRAINER STRETCHED THINGS TOO FAR WHEN HE ALLOWED HIS STUDENT TO FILTER OUT A TSTM. THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO WOULD HAVE TAKEN HER COMMENTS TO MEAN THAT WHAT THEY WERE SEEING WASN'T THAT SEVERE BORED AND STRAIGHT THROUGH IT. CALLBACK CONVERSATION WITH RPTR REVEALED THE FOLLOWING: RPTR WAS CALLED, MAINLY, TO DISCUSS THE CAPABILITIES OF TERMINAL ATC FACS IN HELPING FLT CREWS TO AVOID SEVERE WX. IT WAS EXPLAINED TO THE RPTR, A COMMUTER PLT AND FORMER ARTCC DEV CTLR, THAT TERMINAL RADARS SYSTEMS AND ARTS IIIA FACS DO NOT HAVE THE KIND OF WX DETECTION CAPABILITY THAT IS NEEDED TO GIVE PLTS THE BEST CHANCE TO AVOID WIND SHEAR AND STORM CELLS. THE ASR-8 AND ARTS IIIA ROUTINELY FILTER OUT THE AREAS OF HEAVIEST PRECIPITATION AND THE CTLR ONLY SEES AREAS THAT ARE OUTLINED BY THE ARTS COMPUTER WHICH DENOTE THE PRINCIPAL AREAS OF MOISTURE. ALTHOUGH IT MAY BE PRUDENT TO AVOID THESE AREAS OF PRECIPITATION, IF A CTLR VECTORS AN ACFT AWAY FROM THESE AREAS, HE OR SHE MAY VECTOR THE ACFT INTO THE AREA OF MOST SEVERE TURB OR WIND SHEAR. ANALYST AND RPTR AGREED THAT TOO FEW PROFESSIONAL PLTS TAKE THE TIME TO VISIT ATC FACS TO FIND OUT WHAT CAN AND CANNOT BE DONE BY A CTLR IN A SEVERE WX SITUATION.
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.