Weekly tips, technique and training from IFR.

Features March 2015 Issue

Loud, Clear, No Fear

New on the radios? Grab a handheld, sit by the fence, and listen to how pilots and ATC talk to one another. You’ll pick up on the lingo and learn the patterns in their communications. You can also jump on and listen to airport communications from around the world.

Loud, Clear, No Fear

Getting a handle on radio communications takes a little bit of confidence, but it can make a world of difference in your dealings with ATC.

Our main airport has several flight schools and they keep us air traffic controllers quite busy. It’s easy to tell when they get a new batch of students—those first radio calls for VFR clearances and eventual taxi and takeoff are usually halting, uncertain affairs, dragging on as students parrot their instructors without truly understanding the lingo. It can be almost as painful for us as for the student.

Clumsy as those first steps may be, the subsequent journey will hopefully lead each student to true proficiency on the radios. It’s not an easy road at times, especially once each advances into instrument training. The amount of radio communication and multitasking may be overwhelming at first.

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