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French BRIA industrial action

I got this at Le Touquet yesterday. The tower could not open the flight plan; they didn’t even have it.

It appears that flight plans cannot be filed via Olivia, and while you can use one of the other FP filing tools, there is no way to open the FP when you depart. So can one depart from France to another country?

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Given the centralized FPL management we have in France, it is an issue. Olivia doesn’t show any warning message (which is no guarantee it works).
If I had to, I would file in Olivia early and call the number and try to get somebody not on strike distribute it. It may get distributed by an other BRIA than the nearest one.
Filing online would send the FPL to the BRIA or your departure field, so not better.

Once distributed, tower (if not on strike) can open it I guess.
If departing from an A/A field, I would put plenty of controlled alternates (for them to receive the FPL) and ask them on the radio to open it.

Jujupilote wrote:

If departing from an A/A field, I would put plenty of controlled alternates (for them to receive the FPL) and ask them on the radio to open it.

Sounds like a good backup approach even for towered airfield departures in a situation that that.

@Peter, wouldn’t that have worked if the tower 8-letter station ID LFATZTZX were included in the FPL distribution list (assuming you used something like autorouter where it is easy to add these)? Of course, if the problem weren’t anticipated then learning of it at first call to the tower is a bit late for that.

LSZK, Switzerland

Peter wrote:

So can one depart from France to another country?

As long as they don’t have a mid-air it is not much of a risk to depart with no filed FPL (or activated FLP?)

ESSEX, United Kingdom

The FP would have been addressed to LFATZTZX for sure, since that is its departure or destination. But still they told me they didn’t have it. So it looks like the AFTN in France got shut down, or some part of it.

I filed it with EuroFPL which I use for

  • all VFR FPs
  • any IFR FPs for which I have a route but which need the EET tweaked to hit some arrival slot (Aero EDNY for example)
  • IFR FPs for which I have a route previously worked out

To file a FP used previously is really fast; under a minute. It is a bit painful to use on a phone, however, but most things are

My Plan B would be AFPEX but that takes the idea of pain to a higher level

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Filing with an app with the addresses on ZxZX would be a great idea during a strike. You avoid the BRIA strike with this strategy.
Thanks chflyer.

EuroFPL follows the French AIP, which is to only send the FPL to the adequate (geographically) BRIA.

Last Edited by Jujupilote at 07 Feb 11:42

Peter wrote:

The tower could not open the flight plan; they didn’t even have it.

I was at Calais yesterday, at the same time, and Lille could not open my return VFR Flight Plan also.
As I was flying back to Lydd, I called them early and got them to activate it.
As to ‘legality’: I presume that on a VFR flight one needs a Flight Plan to ‘legally’ cross the FIR. Hence the need to ‘activate’ it before crossing i.e. either with Lydd (in my case) or London Information.
If one was flying IFR, I presume that one cannot enter Controlled Airspace without one being activated. Whether yesterday that would have allowed a ‘Pop Up’ IFR flight plan, I do not know.

Rochester, UK, United Kingdom

EuroFPL follows the French AIP, which is to only send the FPL to the adequate (geographically) BRIA.

I checked the FP confirmation. Original addressees:

EGKAZTZX EGZYVFRT LFATZTZX LFFFZFZX LFYNZPZX LFQQZTZX

All flight plans go to departure, destination, alternate, AFAIK, as well as the (AIP specified) other addresses.

Of course LFAT tower are pragmatic and do everything with a smile

If one was flying IFR, I presume that one cannot enter Controlled Airspace without one being activated. Whether yesterday that would have allowed a ‘Pop Up’ IFR flight plan, I do not know.

Yes indeed; I don’t think you could have departed France on a Eurocontrol IFR FP to say the UK. You would have had to “depart VFR” and once in UK airspace called up London Info and get them to do the handover to London Control, but no CAS until you got that. I wonder how the airlines dealt with it. You can’t really do “pop up” IFR in the UK (Class A) but OTOH the UK would have got a copy of the FP ok.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

You would have had to “depart VFR”

Most of my ‘IFR’ flights are ‘Z’ ones, especially in the South of England, since I find it usually so much easier to get out of the congested South East that way without “being sent to the sun to get around the moon”.

Rochester, UK, United Kingdom

Peter_G wrote:

much easier to get out of the congested South East that way without “being sent to the sun to get around the moon”.

I guess Peter is already in the “sea” (Shoreham ) and follows “no VFR” policy over “land”

ESSEX, United Kingdom
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