Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
#1784838
RisePilot wrote:Or you could just not fly through an active drop zone, no matter what terminology is used.


Then you might never fly to some places... the only time you dont want to be there is when the meat is in the air... this is a tiny portion of the active time.
scd975 liked this
#1784858
RisePilot wrote:Or you could just not fly through an active drop zone, no matter what terminology is used.

I wouldn't do it myself but it might be argued that passing through the NOTAMMED area downwind of the actual landing point would be safe; the paras would always operate from upwind.
#1784875
RisePilot wrote:Or you could just not fly through an active drop zone, no matter what terminology is used.


How does one know it’s active? The presence of the NOTAM only means it might be active.

Unless there’s a good way of tactically determining whether it’s active, then as others have said, good sense would require avoiding it. In which case it’s effectively restricted airspace.
bogopper, Longfinal liked this
#1784897
Tim Dawson wrote:
RisePilot wrote:Or you could just not fly through an active drop zone, no matter what terminology is used.


How does one know it’s active? The presence of the NOTAM only means it might be active.

Unless there’s a good way of tactically determining whether it’s active, then as others have said, good sense would require avoiding it. In which case it’s effectively restricted airspace.

There are para DZ frequencies, 129.905 being a commonly used one, but if they don't publish the frequency on the NOTAM you can't call it can you.
#1784899
Tim Dawson wrote:
RisePilot wrote:Or you could just not fly through an active drop zone, no matter what terminology is used.


How does one know it’s active? The presence of the NOTAM only means it might be active.

Unless there’s a good way of tactically determining whether it’s active, then as others have said, good sense would require avoiding it. In which case it’s effectively restricted airspace.


And that’s precisely what we need to guard against. There is really no reason for it, given the advent of information services like yours that can, if properly fed with properly prepared NOTAMs, provide a far more responsive alerting system than was originally dreamed of by whoever created the NOTAM system.

We now have the systems for broadcasting the data, undreamt of a few years ago. We also have a system and culture of NOTAM reading wihin GA. What we don’t have is a system or culture of NOTAM drafting such that these Notice to Airmen are both geographically limited and also time-limited so that they only impact what they must.

With the probable advent of Flexible Use Airspace at lower level we're going to have to grasp this nettle and move beyond lazy, catch-all, blanket NOTAMs. Hooray.
#1784945
I suspect a few people complaining about bad NOTAM will be all it takes.

The next parachuting NOTAM that omits a frequency to call to tactically ascertain whether there are currently meatbombs descending should provoke a flurry of emails to ais.supervisor@nats.co.uk who will hopefully encourage the author of the NOTAM to do better next time.
skydriller, Dominie liked this
#1784980
My input on this thread is for understanding of how skydiving operations exit jumpers and what to be aware of.

My note above re not flying through an active dropzone was directed at the pedant that noted he technically could as it’s not a RA(T).

As for where/how they exit jumpers:

- depending on wind speed upper and lower, they generally deploy upwind, but if winds are low, the midpoint may be overhead the DZ with jumpers dropped both upwind and downwind

- they exit in the following order: bigger groups to smaller groups, freeflyers before flatflyers, tandems near end and wingsuits last.

- most dropzones in the UK go to 12.5k (avg) up to 15k; you may also have jumpers (on same lift/flight) exiting at 3-5k doing “hop & pops” with the plane continuing to altitude for the remaining jumpers.

- you may also encounter groups doing “canopy formation” where the whole group immediately deploys canopies and does formations/linking until separation altitude

- you may also encounter what is called a “cross country” where jumpers deploy their canopies at full altitude for a long slow glide back to the DZ. These are rare in the UK, but can cover many miles and last around 15 minutes – this is usually an end-of-day sunset jump

- you may also encounter odd stuff such as someone under parachute flying formation with a wingsuit (high performance canopy and wearing weight vest for speed).

- I’ve seen DZs with up to 5 jump planes operating at one time; don’t take for granted these will all be separate jumps as they may perform multi-ship jumps.

I’ve even had on occasion, the pilot of a Pilatus dive back down to two of us in wingsuits and lower flaps and fly beside us in formation (unplanned & unbriefed, but it was fine).

… in brief, don’t try to guess what is happening in the that little circle on the map that says skydiving.
#1784982
RisePilot wrote:My input on this thread is for understanding of how skydiving operations exit jumpers and what to be aware of.

My note above re not flying through an active dropzone was directed at the pedant that noted he technically could as it’s not a RA(T).

As for where/how they exit jumpers:

- depending on wind speed upper and lower, they generally deploy upwind, but if winds are low, the midpoint may be overhead the DZ with jumpers dropped both upwind and downwind

- they exit in the following order: bigger groups to smaller groups, freeflyers before flatflyers, tandems near end and wingsuits last.

- most dropzones in the UK go to 12.5k (avg) up to 15k; you may also have jumpers (on same lift/flight) exiting at 3-5k doing “hop & pops” with the plane continuing to altitude for the remaining jumpers.

- you may also encounter groups doing “canopy formation” where the whole group immediately deploys canopies and does formations/linking until separation altitude

- you may also encounter what is called a “cross country” where jumpers deploy their canopies at full altitude for a long slow glide back to the DZ. These are rare in the UK, but can cover many miles and last around 15 minutes – this is usually an end-of-day sunset jump

- you may also encounter odd stuff such as someone under parachute flying formation with a wingsuit (high performance canopy and wearing weight vest for speed).

- I’ve seen DZs with up to 5 jump planes operating at one time; don’t take for granted these will all be separate jumps as they may perform multi-ship jumps.

I’ve even had on occasion, the pilot of a Pilatus dive back down to two of us in wingsuits and lower flaps and fly beside us in formation (unplanned & unbriefed, but it was fine).

… in brief, don’t try to guess what is happening in the that little circle on the map that says skydiving.


Which slightly underlines the point that a simple 'alert' NOTAM which leaves the pilot no wiser and obliges him to make assumptions about all of the above is about as much use as a chocolate teapot. It is nowadays possible to be somewhat more precise in terms of extent and duration - and to disseminate that information within the planning cycle of the average GA pilot.
#1785252
I think that this was the thread, but if not - I don't care...

If skydivers are wingsuiting and are **** - a term for a ride out in the sky, they can be as much as 5 miles from the DZ at exit. From 13.5k they can fly a looooong way before deploying.

If you search Youtube for **** wingsuit competitions, you will see what I mean.
#1785549
https://www.sia.aviation-civile.gouv.fr ... i_2020.pdf

Interestingly the French have just published a 53 page revue of the scope, useage and development of NOTAMS>

Its actually well written but on first search I couldn't find a link to an English translation though I'm sure there's likely one will appear ere long via the DGAC website.

Perhaps we could learn a thing or two.

Peter