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Aircraft (ULM EC-GU1) and Helicopter D-HOTT Mid-Air on Mallorca

And you could then add in
pilot resistance to Electronic Conspicuity.

and in the case of the UK, the CAA introducing a new punishment system which positively encourages pilots to be invisible.

So there will always be some resistance; see e.g. here for some perspectives from other countries.

A very sad accident, and one of several in the last few days.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

LeSving wrote:

In any case (accident or no accident) the airspace, ATC and radio communications seems nonfunctional, and ADS-B is no solution to that. Things have to work first, then one can start to contemplate ADS-B.

Sorry, I disagree; ADS-B or FLARM is the last resolution in conditions where all other basic means of traffic avoidance collapse. This type of accidents happen in well structured airspace as well to aircraft on the same frequency.

Slovakia

An island of only, being a bit simplistic, fifty miles by fifty miles with as far as I can see only one major airport and two minor airfields, has class A down to 1000 feet and multiple frequencies. That is death by regulatory failure.

strip near EGGW

We can tell the same thing in Fréjus / saint Tropez area under 2500ft.
UL, Heli coming from la Mole, Heli coming from Boat, many school flights, sometimes paragliders under Nice TMA, half Heli and almost no UL on the frequency. Twice I had to avoid helicopters at 10s collision routes this summer. A third time a copter came to frequency to ask us to leave priority… :O
First, with com and sqawk, basic service will most of time warn about a collision course and tells you about incoming traffic, but adsb in-out would be a great plus.

LFMD, France

I am sure not defending vast and low class A airspaces, but I assume you do know how busy the airport gets between June and September? I guess it is one of the busiest airports in Europe during that time.

Ok Mallorca, VFR traffic-wise, a lot of things come together, which all make the traffic end up in the same spots:

  • concentration of traffic in the summer months
  • class A, which makes all traffic fly between a few hundred and 1000 feet (or a little above)
  • almost no traffic on the westerly third of the island, due to mountains, so almost all in tje two easterly thirds
  • at lot of traffic follows the north-south highway from Alcudia to Palma

I have flown down this route in the beginning of June, and there was traffic there.
It would be good if everybody there was on the same freq, but even then, due to several reasons (different languages, quality of radio calls, frequency congestion) it would not be all too helpful.

Last Edited by boscomantico at 26 Aug 10:30
Mainz (EDFZ), Germany

Can you imagine that situation arising in a civilised country, like the UK?

What do you mean?

These are terrible news but, a congested area with VFR traffics with a class A on top is not that strange. A lot of places in Europe share the same characteristics. When was the last time that you flew in G using the “see and avoid rule”?
I have seen many pilots from time to time that are only used to fly in CAS or are very dependant on XPDR, ATC and GPS.
Please let’s not forget basic aviation rules, we all agree that this accident could have been avoided with better regulations and coordination but we can’t blame the local procedures for it.

Regards

Last Edited by speed at 26 Aug 11:14
Don't get too slow
LEBZ | LECN | LECU, Spain

speed wrote:

Please let’s not forget basic aviation rules, we all agree that this accident could have been avoided with better regulations and coordination but we can’t blame the local procedures for it.

I disagree. Airspace design is an important factor in aviation safety and the design of the Palma TMA is just sloppy — or lazy, if you wish. With terrain elevation varying as much as it does on Mallorca, having the ground as reference for the underside of a class A TMA will just waste lots of airspace that can’t be used either by VFR or IFR traffic.

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

supik wrote:

Sorry, I disagree; ADS-B or FLARM is the last resolution in conditions where all other basic means of traffic avoidance collapse. This type of accidents happen in well structured airspace as well to aircraft on the same frequency.

IMO we agree more than we disagree. I have never used ADS-B (in or out), so I don’t know how that works in a practical situation. FLARM however is designed as a tool when flying (gliders, first and foremost) in close proximity as a flock, and making it a bit safer than without it. That flock may look like chaos, but there are structure and rules for how to fly.

I imagine ADS-B being a nice equipment for avoiding other traffic altogether. I can’t see how it will help in congested airspaces, because you don’t want to avoid other traffic, you just don’t want to crash into it. Therefore the first thing to do is to get some structure into the operation. This is done with proper airspaces, proper communication and a set of rules for how to operate first and foremost. Then, when this is done, one can start to include ADS-B for instance or even FLARM. You cannot have airspaces where no one has a clue of what the other pilots are doing or planning, then expect ADS-B or FLARM to somehow by (electronic) magic solve the situation. Maybe I’m wrong, but I can’t see how that will work. You have to sort out the very basics first. ADS-B will never tell you what the other pilots are going to do 10s from now.

ENVA ENOP ENMO, Norway

The particular point about the UK is that our radar services are completely fragmented, and in any one place, in the south east in particular, you might have a choice of five different units to talk to.

It is more the fragmented nature of ATSOCAS than the nature of the airspace I was talking about.

EGKB Biggin Hill

speed wrote:

Can you imagine that situation arising in a civilised country, like the UK?

What do you mean?

I suspect (hope) that Timothy said that tongue-in-cheek, as the UK has the worst airspace anywhere coupled with crap / nonexistent ATC (for GA, that is).

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