Send me BRIEFINGS from IFR, FREE!

Weekly tips, technique and training from IFR.

Features July 2015 Issue

FA Swan Song

The area forecast is going away. While we mourn its passing, we’re left searching for a suitable replacement for IFR alternate planning to airports without TAFs.

Receiving my instrument ticket from a university pilot-mill, flight and weather planning was grueling and intense. For flights over an hour, a Terminal Aerodrome Forecast (TAF) is used. For secondary airports within five miles of a field with a TAF, the TAF from the primary airport can be used No TAF? Use the Area Forecast (FA). This originated from the Aviation Weather Services advisory circular, which states that an FA is used “to interpolate conditions at airports which [sic] do not have a Terminal Aerodrome Forecast.” Determining forecast weather, particularly ceilings and visibilities, is essential for instrument pilots to ascertain if an alternate is needed and to select one that meets requirements.

To continue reading this article you must be a paid subscriber.

Subscribe to IFR Magazine

Get the next year of IFR Magazine for just $19.97. Get access to all articles published online. Features, reviews, lesson, quizzes - get it all.

That's a savings of more than $14 off the regular rate. Or double your savings and subscribe for 14 issues for just $39.94.

Get IFR Digital

Get 12 months of IFR DIGITAL for just $34. You get unlimited access to everything on the site including each monthly issue as a PDF.

Subscriber Log In

Forgot your password? Click Here.

Already subscribe but haven't registered for all the benefits of the website? Click here.