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National CAA policies around Europe on busting pilots who bust controlled airspace (and danger areas)

I wonder whether the UK’s high percentage of non-transponding (or Mode A only) aircraft, often described here as not seen anywhere else in Europe, is because the CAA is taking no prisoners nowadays?

They go after 100% of CAS busts. Even where a corner was clipped for say 1 minute.

It used to be an online tutorial followed by a high-intensity exam. As described here the exam was rigged so many fail it (by being constrained on time, question order, and by containing a large % of duff questions). Those who failed the exam got several options for “re-education” of which the only one which anyone with a brain would choose was a session with an instructor at a local school.

Nowadays, it appears, the last step has been replaced with a £200 1-day classroom. These are held at a few places (hotels) around the country and for many/most people it is a hotel stay to be there at the starting time, so it costs them a few hundred quid plus a day or two of their time (the real intended penalty IMHO, so you don’t forget it).

I think the most likely outcome of this process, for most attendees, is that people will turn off their transponder, or turn off Mode A which, given that a non-TXP aircraft busting a CTR will be potentially tracked all the way back to its base, practically speaking achieves the same thing. Mode S pilots will turn it off completely.

With some 1300 busts a year (15% of them by instructional flights), this is incidentally likely to yield a significant revenue for GASCO which runs the hotel sessions. At up to 24 people, at £200 each…

What do other countries do?

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

I’ve busted thrice (and pretty badly) , twice in the UK, once in France. Never heard a thing back (Andy they have my correct address!)

1) Paris Orly’s TMA. arrivals were apparently rerouted. When landed (at toussus LFPN), went to the tower and asked if could call Orly and explain / apologise. Talked to the head of tower and never heard anything back. They did specifically mentioned that I got bonus points for not turning the transponder off, which apparently is not so uncommon in that sort of situation

2) Luton (I’d guess 2 years ago). On a go around of a practice approach at Cambridge while practicing (solo) for my MEIR, went in the TMA by a good 1000 ft, when told so set a high rate of descent and turned to shortest way out. Apologised, never heard about it again

3) Glasgow, after being “dumped” into uncontrolled when the airspace foor rises temporarily for gliders. Was given a phone number which I called by the end of the flight, apologised, and explained how no map showed the raised floor (some unfortunate event also had me being on wrong frequency, so got called many minutes back into class A on 121.t which I normally monitor). Never heard back.

Last Edited by Noe at 25 Apr 20:53
What do other countries do?

In some places, they will just fire those S75 SAMs, end of story

Peter wrote:

They go after 100% of CAS busts. Even where a corner was clipped for say 1 minute.

For CTRs/CTAs it all depends if you sort you problem on the spot with anyone of the local guys…
I am not sure about the “holy London TMA” (which I understand from ATC is really a big no-go)

Peter wrote:

is that people will turn off their transponder, or turn off Mode A which

I think that is the stupid thing one can do,
- If you fly “high and fast”, that may get you away from TMA bust follow-up but will not be much of a help on a 400kts mid-air collision…
- If you fly “low and slow”, that makes transiting bellow CTAs/CTRs count as bust from zone ATC perspective (I do fly non-xpdr aircrafts from time to time, so I know what this means: always call ATC to tell them you are bellow CAS and I also keep a log of flight heights)

Last Edited by Ibra at 25 Apr 22:08
ESSEX, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

With some 1300 busts a year

Only 1300 busts UK-wide? At the safety seminar, the head of Czech ATM told us they register about 4000 busts every year, most of them from below. Apparently, they only go after the nastiest ones. They also try to prevent busts when they can – Prague Information will routinely remind you to remain below TMA; if you are about to bust a TMA/CTR, they will give you a 30-60 seconds’ warning.

LKBU near Prague, Czech Republic

Peter wrote:

Mode S pilots will turn it off completely because AFAIK the altitude is always radiated on Mode S.

You must be able to turn altitude reporting off separately in case the encoder gives wrong data.

The panel of a Trig TT31 mode S transponder:

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

Yes I think in the UK it is the LTMA which is most fiercely (going after the pilot absolutely 100% AFAIK) enforced. The others I am not sure about but the notorious Manchester / Liverpool 1300ft bit must get loads too.

Can people post what their own countries do in terms of persecution / prosecution?

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

Can people post what their own countries do in terms of persecution / prosecution?

Sweden: As long as there has not been a loss of separation, you would have to write a report explaining why you busted CAS. I guess this is seen as a learning experience. That’s more or less a light slap — even in Stockholm TMA. This happens once a year or so for pilots in our club.

If there is a loss of separation there would be a proper investigation, but I’ve never heard of anyone being prosecuted or even administratively punished.

Last Edited by Airborne_Again at 26 Apr 09:08
ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

Peter wrote:

(going after the pilot absolutely 100% AFAIK

I just gave you a counterexample to this. I’ll send you the screenshot by email

I am told a lot has changed since 2 years ago. I believe this chap did a few things I met him at a seminar once; he made it clear (with a recent bust example) that he was keen on prosecutions.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

because AFAIK the altitude is always radiated on Mode S.

The Garmin GTX335 at least has a separate ALT and ON setting, which implies you can turn off the altitude reporting.

Andreas IOM
1996 Posts
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