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Features June 2017 Issue

Echoes Of Errors Past

One aircraft rolls out with another on a four mile final. At 150 knots, the aircraft on final will be on the runway in about a minute and a half. Using line up and wait, I can hit that gap to get another departure out.

Echoes Of Errors Past

ATC’s equivalent of a running start, “Line Up And Wait” balances oft-needed efficiency with some serious risk management.

You’ve probably heard the morbid axiom: FAA regulations are written in blood. Many of the rules fattening the books governing pilots and air traffic controllers were brought about by unfortunate incidents. “Line up and wait” (LUAW) is a significant example. It’s an inherently risky maneuver: a controller places an airplane on a runway but doesn’t let them take off due to other traffic using the runway or on final to that same runway.

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