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Class B busted...My problem or the controller's ?



 
 
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  #1  
Old May 28th 05, 07:42 AM
Antoņio
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Default Class B busted...My problem or the controller's ?

Today I flew into KBFI (Boeing field) which is class D and has
extentions that underlie the Class B that require close attention to
altitudes and headings so as to stay clear. Today the winds were
favoring 31L (and 31R) and I came in from the west on the Vashon
approach--the most common approach from the west.

I was on a left downwind for 31L and the tower told me I was number
three following an Arrow on about a 2 mile straight in final (Valley
approach?). I acknowledged the traffic, and was waiting for it to come
up on my 9 o'clock before turning base so as to allow enough spacing.

The controller suddenly told me that I was too far south and said
either that I had busted into surface B or was about to. (I never did
clearly hear which).
Unless one turns a fairly close in base here--within about a half mile
or less--you end up in class B surface.

My questions:

1.Assuming I busted B; who is reponsible if the controller asks me to
follow an aircraft that is too far out on a straight in? I mean, I can
reduce speed, s-turn, and the like but I can't turn base until the
aircraft on final is a safe distance away, right?

2.Is the controller supposed to arrange things so that I *can* turn
base and not be in conflict with other aircraft?

3.How would you resolve the problem if it were happening to you ?

Any thoughts would be appreciated...

Antonio

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  #2  
Old May 28th 05, 08:41 AM
ShawnD2112
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It's ultimately your responsibility for the safe and legal conduct of your
flight. You can technically refuse any instruction given by ATC on the
grounds that it would compromise the safety and legality of your flight. If
you knew the conditions of the pattern relative to Class B, it was your
responsibility to alert the controller to the fact they'd given you
instructions which would risk your busting the space.

Your fault, I'm afraid. Be adult about it and recognize your
responsibility.

Aviation is nearly unique in the world as being a professional community
which lives and breathes by the concept that the final and, really, only
authority in any situation is the pilot in command. I think it's a
brilliant concept that the rest of society is weaker for not embracing. The
blame and victim cultures that relieve everyone of their own personal adult
responsibility do not apply in aviation and, for the most part, pilots
willingly behave appropriately. I think it's one of the crowing glories of
the aviation community.

Shawn
"Antoņio" wrote in message
oups.com...
Today I flew into KBFI (Boeing field) which is class D and has
extentions that underlie the Class B that require close attention to
altitudes and headings so as to stay clear. Today the winds were
favoring 31L (and 31R) and I came in from the west on the Vashon
approach--the most common approach from the west.

I was on a left downwind for 31L and the tower told me I was number
three following an Arrow on about a 2 mile straight in final (Valley
approach?). I acknowledged the traffic, and was waiting for it to come
up on my 9 o'clock before turning base so as to allow enough spacing.

The controller suddenly told me that I was too far south and said
either that I had busted into surface B or was about to. (I never did
clearly hear which).
Unless one turns a fairly close in base here--within about a half mile
or less--you end up in class B surface.

My questions:

1.Assuming I busted B; who is reponsible if the controller asks me to
follow an aircraft that is too far out on a straight in? I mean, I can
reduce speed, s-turn, and the like but I can't turn base until the
aircraft on final is a safe distance away, right?

2.Is the controller supposed to arrange things so that I *can* turn
base and not be in conflict with other aircraft?

3.How would you resolve the problem if it were happening to you ?

Any thoughts would be appreciated...

Antonio



  #3  
Old May 28th 05, 11:45 AM
Greg Farris
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Sounds like you knew the airspace well - so you knew extending the
downwind would bring you close to Class B, if not into it - That's an
advantage, compared with someone who is there for the first time, and
gives full trust to the controller. In your case, I would have said
something to the tower, like "Unable to continue downwind into Class
Bravo" asking for advice. That way, if he sends you into Class B, it's
clear(er) who did what.

I'm getting tempted to bring my own pocket recorder to monitor
clearances and instructions. I've had controllers flat out deny the
instructions they gave. I know they have tapes, but I get the feeling
that when you want to contest something, those tapes may go the way of
Rose Mary Woods . . .

Hope you files a NASA form.

G Faris

  #4  
Old May 28th 05, 12:49 PM
kontiki
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ShawnD2112 wrote:

Aviation is nearly unique in the world as being a professional community
which lives and breathes by the concept that the final and, really, only
authority in any situation is the pilot in command. I think it's a
brilliant concept that the rest of society is weaker for not embracing. The
blame and victim cultures that relieve everyone of their own personal adult
responsibility do not apply in aviation and, for the most part, pilots
willingly behave appropriately. I think it's one of the crowing glories of
the aviation community.


Eloquently stated sir. Would that all of the other participants in this
great experiement called "Life on Earth" have the same philosophy.

  #5  
Old May 28th 05, 02:36 PM
Gary Drescher
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"Antoņio" wrote in message
oups.com...
1.Assuming I busted B; who is reponsible if the controller asks me to
follow an aircraft that is too far out on a straight in? I mean, I can
reduce speed, s-turn, and the like but I can't turn base until the
aircraft on final is a safe distance away, right?


I don't know how the FAA may have ruled on such situations in practice, but
the FARs seem ambiguous on the question. Of course, FAR 91.131a1 requires a
clearance before entering Class B. But FAR 91.123b requires compliance with
ATC instructions, except in an emergency. Clipping the edge of Class B
probably doesn't constitute an emergency. So the FARs seem contradictory in
a situation where obeying ATC requires you to bust Class B.

In such a situation, I would first make every effort to alert the tower that
I'm about to enter Class B. If the frequency is too congested to talk on the
radio, I'd hit Ident. If I still had no reply from the tower, I'd leave the
traffic pattern, stay clear of Class B, head outside the Class D (if not
outside already), and contact the tower as soon as possible.

I'd suggest that you submit an ASRS form, both for your legal protection,
and also to call attention to the problem.

--Gary


  #6  
Old May 28th 05, 04:23 PM
john smith
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Get a copy of the Letter of Agreement between the CBAS and the CDAS.
Read it to see who is responsible where between the two agencies and
what coordination they have to resolve conflicts.
Fill out a NASA Form 277.
Aviate
Navigate
Communicate
Sounds like you did them in that order.
  #7  
Old May 28th 05, 06:53 PM
Steven P. McNicoll
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"Greg Farris" wrote in message
...

I'm getting tempted to bring my own pocket recorder to monitor
clearances and instructions. I've had controllers flat out deny the
instructions they gave. I know they have tapes, but I get the feeling
that when you want to contest something, those tapes may go the way of
Rose Mary Woods . . .


Without the tapes they can't prove you violated an instruction.


  #8  
Old May 28th 05, 06:55 PM
Steven P. McNicoll
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Default


"john smith" wrote in message
...

Get a copy of the Letter of Agreement between the CBAS and the CDAS.
Read it to see who is responsible where between the two agencies and what
coordination they have to resolve conflicts.


It doesn't matter who has jurisdiction if neither of them issued a clearance
into Class B airspace.


  #9  
Old May 28th 05, 07:17 PM
Peter Duniho
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"Antoņio" wrote in message
oups.com...
[...]
Unless one turns a fairly close in base here--within about a half mile
or less--you end up in class B surface.


IMHO, that's incorrect. It's true that if you are flying a very wide
downwind, you can clip the area of the Class B airspace that extends to the
surface. But provided you are flying the downwind where you're supposed
to -- over the Duwamish River -- you can fly straight out the valley as far
as you like without running into the Class B.

You do need to make sure you're at the proper pattern altitude (800') to
ensure you're not grazing the bottom (1100' at its lowest). But that's
usually not an issue.

1.Assuming I busted B; who is reponsible if the controller asks me to
follow an aircraft that is too far out on a straight in? I mean, I can
reduce speed, s-turn, and the like but I can't turn base until the
aircraft on final is a safe distance away, right?


Assuming you busted the Class B, you are responsible. The only thing that
the tower controller does is grant you use of the runway. They don't have
the authority to clear you into the Class B, and it's your responsibility to
say "unable" if you're given an instruction with which you can't comply (for
whatever reason, including regulatory).

2.Is the controller supposed to arrange things so that I *can* turn
base and not be in conflict with other aircraft?


The controllers is supposed to arrange things so that you don't wind up on
the same part of the runway at the same time as someone else. That's all.
They may try to assist with other issues, but ultimately those are all up to
you.

3.How would you resolve the problem if it were happening to you ?


Hard to say without knowing the specifics. The "problem" you describe
doesn't actually exist at Boeing Field, so the only way for me to answer is
to assume some other airport where the problem does exist. But airspace
designers try to avoid creating problems like this. So finding such an
airport on which to base my answer might be difficult, or impossible.

That said, let's assume that at Boeing Field, the Class B down to the
surface actually does extend all the way up to, but not including, the final
approach course (it must not go over the final approach course, since then
no straight-in approach would be allowed, except by aircraft who already
have clearance through the Class B). Let's further assume that you need to
turn base before 1/2 mile past the "abeam the numbers" point.

Then your only available option is to not fly more than 1/2 mile past where
you are abeam the numbers. This may require S-turns, to give the
straight-in traffic more time. This may require making a 360 degree turn.
You could possibly turn upwind and try again, hoping that no more
straight-in traffic will show up. There are a variety of ways to solve the
problem. But you would have to solve it...flying into the Class B airspace
without a clearance isn't an option.

Fortunately, this is all moot. It is entirely possible to extend one's
downwind at Boeing Field without flying into the Class B airspace, and so
the only thing you really need to do is make sure you are far enough east to
avoid the Class B (and far enough west to avoid conflict with straight-in
traffic). It's tighter than you usually find, but it's definitely doable.

For what it's worth, I have found that the easiest way to ensure you're in
the right spot is to fly directly over the Duwamish, and then aim for the
small hill just to the south of the runway. As long as your downwind takes
you just west of that hill, you'll stay clear of both the Class B and the
final approach course. Alternatively, stay over or east of Route 99, and
that will accomplish the same thing. I prefer the topographic landmarks,
because they are easier to see than picking out which roadway is which, but
99 ought to be pretty prominent too.

Pete


  #10  
Old May 28th 05, 08:19 PM
Montblack
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("Greg Farris" wrote)
I'm getting tempted to bring my own pocket recorder to monitor
clearances and instructions. I've had controllers flat out deny the
instructions they gave. I know they have tapes, but I get the feeling
that when you want to contest something, those tapes may go the way of
Rose Mary Woods . . .



What she described (her boo boo) was almost physically impossible to achieve
...."accidentally."

http://watergate.info/images/woods-rosemary.jpg
Something about her body language, in that now famous photo, was screaming -
"I'm lying."


Montblack

 




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