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Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

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  • Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

    Following the failed attempt by Farnborough to establish controlled airspace over a huge swathe of southern uk, they seem now to be under-manning the three areas providing ATCSOCA ( atc sevices outside controlled airspace) over most of southern uk. Yesterday I needed Farnborough to approve my transit of the northern Stansted TMZ en route from Rayne to Old Walden. Having asked for Basic Service and transit, which was approved, I was unceremoniously dumped just as I exited the TMZ at Safron Walden, with some 21 miles to go, and told to free-call Old Walden, which doesn't have a manned radio on non show days. I also noticed that the one controller was also handling radio calls from aircraft on the south coast, rather weak and crackly, and annoying, on my radio at the northern extreme of the Farnborough North area.

    So having imposed the Stansted TMZs on us on the basis that Farnborough would have the resources to handle the required radio traffic, the service is now declining, with a huge area being handled by just one controller, and making it difficult to get a call in to make the transits.

    Come on CAA/NATS, this is just not good enough.

  • #2
    Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

    Same scam as Solent. Make radio contact virtually impossible in order to justify a TMZ. Class G? what class G?

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    • #3
      Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

      Alan, Tom, Everyone.
      If you have specific examples of problems you should report these to NATS otherwise there is no evidence to support requests for change.
      Geoff

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      • #4
        Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

        Thank you Geoff. Solent is virtually impossible at weekends.Flying from within the "collaborative" airspace squawkless, it seems better just to go non radio and avoid controlled airspace while listening out on the frequency.

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        • #5
          Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

          Geoff Weighell wrote:
          If you have specific examples of problems you should report these to NATS otherwise there is no evidence to support requests for change.
          As an association we can also ask if there is sufficient capacity employed to service the airspace they have grabbed.

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          • #6
            Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

            Last Sunday at around midday the Solent controllers were asking all aircraft to standby temporarily due to their workload. I think that question needs to be asked.

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            • #7
              Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

              Yes I agree Steve. All of the ATC radio chat is recorded and archived by law, including the radar data, certainly as far as Farnborough and Swanick is concerned, so if any retrospective analysis is required it's all there. But a simple question without quoting examples would be a good step for the BMAA to take. But I have noticed notams effectively reducing the services provided by Farnborough and Norwich, who also grabbed a huge lump of airspace in recent years, have been published occasionally. That's not to say we receive a poor service but as far as Farnborough is concerned you would expect not to have to wait minutes to get a Stansted TMZ transit request in while they deal with aircraft down on the south coast! My airfield is just two minutes away from the Stansted TMZ so sometimes I have to orbit to await radio space. They are supposed to be operating separate coverage of their north and south area (and a west area). Apart from being dumped 21nm short of my non-radio destination this week, I have no complaints about the service, usually very professional and friendly. Shortage of coverage is not the fault of the controllers but of the system and the funding. So a friendly enquiry from the BMAA would be a good non finger-pointing step.

              Regards

              Alan

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              • #8
                Farnborough Short of Radio Resources?

                And yet again today, Farnborough desperately short of resources. I managed two TMZ transits with basic service, getting Farnborough permission without any delay either end, proffessional courteous service throughout, but the operator was turning down requests for Traffic Services due to workload, whilst handling all radio traffic from both the North Sector and the East sector. Not what was promised when set up. How can one operator handle all radio traffic for almost all of the south east U.K.? I suspect this bank holiday weekend with good weather forecast will put a single operator under considerable pressure.

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