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The EIR - beginning to end (merged)

Most of it. How about the bit where we also mix it at FL250 with airliners when doing VOR/Radar calibration?

But you can do that perfectly well on FAA TK. What do the other 6 exams teach you?

EGTK Oxford

Personally, I think the level of knowledge required is about right. We can argue about the content.

How would you define “knowledge” and “content”?

I would define the former as a level of difficulty intended to prevent less than very motivated people getting an IR (the often quoted traditional reason for the IR theory being hard) and would define the latter as the stuff that’s useful for flying.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter, I would say that knowledge is the amount of ‘stuff’ that needs to be learnt, not the difficulty. It is widely accepted that a quick couple of weeks staring at an EASA TK QB will provide the necessary results and I personally think that in this respect the FAA IR is a more difficult hoop to jump through; you have to know you’re stuff and not just that the correct answer to Q32 is 47nm.

My original point was that I believe the CBIR should not attract a lesser amount of TK than any other IR as we’re all going to be mixing it in the same piece of sky.

Fly safely
Various UK. Operate throughout Europe and Middle East, United Kingdom

My original point was that I believe the CBIR should not attract a lesser amount of TK than any other IR as we’re all going to be mixing it in the same piece of sky.

I agree with that but you said that you used most of your EASA IR TK to fly with the airliners. That isn’t even true with the FAA IR and I think the FAA TK is more practically focussed. And there is no evidence of them causing any more problems in the LTMA than EASA license holders.

EGTK Oxford

The CBIR requires 80 hours of logged ground school, with around 20 at the ATO. In practice likely to be more, but this is a fraction of the 650 hours needed for the complete ATP exams.

The FAA oral, if the DPE is good, probably covers more practical IFR ops and emergency procedures than the ATP EASA exams. However the EASA ATP does cover a lot of material which is relevant to commercial air transport, and is tested at airline interview and when flying the line. I am thinking of mass and balance, performance and flight planning papers.

Oxford (EGTK)

A few points (sorry, I have come to this discussion late.)

Yes, GA and VFR traffic do have “rights to access” to controlled airspace. In the UK, in particular (I know less of other regulatory regimes), the CAA makes it perfectly clear to the ANSP that they are controlling the airspace for the benefit of all. I am (today) going to submit a paper to NATMAC arguing that ANSPs must staff their ATC adequately such that any withholding of a clearance is airspace based, not controller workload based.

Technically, I am not quite convinced that IR[ R ] + EIR = IR in the UK. This is subject to discussion, and Julian may be able to bring us up to date, but, when I last looked, neither an IR[ R ] nor an EIR was permitted to fly a full SID or STAR. The IR[ R] can only fly the portion not in Class A airspace and the EIR may not fly any of it, meaning that the portion of the SID/STAR inside Class A airspace cannot be flown on either ticket. We have had discussions with the CAA, and all are agreed that it is a silly oversight, but I am not sure if it has been rectified.

Also, 1800m is more of a restriction than some realise. RVRs are quite common, and an IR[ R ] cannot fly when there are RVRs reported unless, in his or her own judgement, the inflight visibility remains >1800m (I am not sure how well that would run in court ). There was talk, and, again, I don’t know if it has been enacted yet, of reducing the 1800m to 1500m, on the grounds that, under SERA, 1500m is VMC, so it is a bit of a nonsense that the IR[ R ] results in a reduction of privileges.

To credit AOPA UK with the CB-IR and EIR is, I am afraid, laughable. PPL/IR Europe invented them and got them through EASA and the EU in the face of quite vicious opposition from AOPA UK’s in-house magazine and spokespeople on the forumsphere. It has to be said that late in the day, under the influence of IAOPA, AOPA UK came to realise the benefit of the new qualifications and were helpful in the later stages, but had the people in PPL/IR Europe been any less robust in the face of AOPA’s earlier attacks, the whole project might have failed.

There are many IR pilots who today operate quite effectively between VFR airfields. If you want to go from Fairoaks to Sabadell, it is quite obvious to do it IFR. Using the newish tools available, such as AutoRouter and AeroPlus FlightPlan, the planning can be done in a jiffy (<5 mins) and the flight executed in the serenity and safety of IFR. (I used to argue the opposite before these tools became so good, but now it really is a doddle (a huge thank you to Achim and Sjoerd)). There is no difference between flying from Biggin Hill to Girona using an EIR to flying from Fairoaks to Sabadell on an IR; both are achievable, to the same level of safety, most of the time. When the conditions are hard IMC you cannot do either.

There is talk of the risks of EIR pilots being caught out by weather deteriorating unexpectedly below VMC at destination, but these same risks apply to VFR pilots and the EIR will be better trained and equipped to deal with it.

Leading on from that, I think that there is too much association in some people’s minds between IMC and IFR. As Peter has said, the VFR/IFR distinction is now quite outdated in an era of magenta lines, synthetic vision and ADS-B/TCAS. I honestly give very little thought when I am flying as to whether I am VFR or IFR. Almost all of my VFR enroute flying complies with the IFR anyway, and, like Peter, if my VFR routing takes me through cloud I don’t even really notice. The important thing about the EIR is that it gives access to to the simplicity and safety of the IFR enroute system, not that it allows you to fly through clouds.

The new TK remains perfectly adequate for the GA pilot. That 50% has been removed from the syllabus is more a reflection on how much superfluous stuff there used to be in the exams than anything else.

All the edits are because this board still does not allow us to write IR [ R ] properly!

Last Edited by Timothy at 30 Sep 08:01
EGKB Biggin Hill
To credit AOPA UK with the CB-IR and EIR is, I am afraid, laughable. PPL/IR Europe invented them and got them through EASA and the EU in the face of quite vicious opposition from AOPA UK’s in-house magazine and spokespeople on the forumsphere. It has to be said that late in the day, under the influence of IAOPA, AOPA UK came to realise the benefit of the new qualifications and were helpful in the later stages, but had the people in PPL/IR Europe been any less robust in the face of AOPA’s earlier attacks, the whole project might have failed.

Hmm…. I have not heard of AOPA UK being viciously opposed to the CBM-IR? I had the impression that there was excellent support for PPL/IR’s CBM-IR initiative.

The perception at the time was that the IMCR was to be “replaced” in favour of the EIR and hence there was concern, but those concens are all gone now that all three ratings are given a future and that there’s support for the EIR in other European countries.

Last Edited by James_Chan at 30 Sep 10:19

I pretty well agree with Timothy’s post above.

Yes, an IMCR+EIR will not let you fly any route (not just sids/stars) if any part of that route falls into Class A before you change VFR to IFR. And same on arrival, the other way round. That’s how EASA drafted it, lots of people (myself included) protested during the consulation, and I don’t see how the UK CAA can change it, short of a finger-up to the EU (which they obviously could do, but its chief exec said at a meeting I went to that they are not going to do an overt refusal like that).

In practice, obviously, nobody is going to question the pilot – ATC are not the police. Well, not in the UK, for sure. In some other places they like to think they are. I was once asked, in France, if I was carrying oxygen…

Over the 14 years I have been kicking around in this game, AOPA UK has had a somewhat varied history on its attitude to IFR generally and N-reg in particular. In recent years they came fully on board on both – I don’t know what happened to bring that about but the main thing is that they are on board now.

My view has always been that all of the various parts of GA need to hang together, or (to use the old saying) they will hang separately! That’s how AOPA USA runs it. If you kill off the IFR side for example, you lose a lot of GA airports and GA gets ever closer to being relegated to a farm strip only existence.

There is an old joke that if you put four GA pilots on a desert island, a year later they will have set up four pilot forums, each with 20 members (all posting under nicknames), four pilot organisations and four splinter groups. Accordingly, all the various UK organisations have suffered badly from divisive behaviour. They have also all suffered badly from the standard “volunteer organisation problem” where a small number of “big characters” tend to rise to the top and cause havoc and mass defections lower down. I get the feeling that a lot of the old divisions are getting worked out now, and also some of the really nasty characters seem to have taken a much lower profile.

Anyway this is largely history, and just as well.

The IR [ R ] issue is I believe due to be fixed at some stage – it is caused by the text processor replacing the “R” part with the “registered trademark” symbol (R) or®. However I see that round brackets do seem to work – IR(R).

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom
(r) (R) (c) (C) IR(R)

&copy;
&reg;

Now gives:

(r) (R) (c) (C) IR(R)

©
®

Enjoy.

Administrator
EGTR / London, United Kingdom

My view has always been that all of the various parts of GA need to hang together, or (to use the old saying) they will hang separately! That’s how AOPA USA runs it. If you kill off the IFR side for example, you lose a lot of GA airports and GA gets ever closer to being relegated to a farm strip only existence.

Absolutely right, but its not the way AOPA (USA) runs it, its just an example of the way the society works. European aviation is a maze of artificial class distinctions and bickering, but its because that’s the way people and their regulators were trained to think.

My idea of simplicity in cross country flying is to get in the plane, call ground, call tower, take off and turn off the radio. Not always possible, but to call IFR ‘simple’ only says that there is no simple option. I see that as a problem, not a solution.

Last Edited by Silvaire at 30 Sep 16:15
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