On The Air: February 2012


Des Moines, Iowa, is busy enough to be interesting but laid back enough to be fun. I was approaching in my Cherokee Six with a King Air holding short:
Tower (to me): “Baron Eight Romeo Pop, cleared to land.”
Me: “Well, I wish I was a Baron. Cherokee Eight Romeo Pop is cleared to land.”
King Air: “I wish I was a 747.”

Ruth Wright-Piros
Des Moines, Iowa

This happened over northern Indiana on a summer day with a lot of weather and a lot of pilots on their way to Oshkosh. ATC was getting frustrated with pilots who weren’t very accustomed to the communications in busy airspace:
Chicago Center: “Hey Mooney Niner Six Kilo, did you just turn 20 degrees to your left?”
Mooney 96K: “Yes sir, that’s 20 degrees left.”
Center: “Well, I told you to turn 20 degrees to your right, and FYI, that’s the other way. Turn 40 degrees, to your right. Now.”
Mooney 96K: “Uh, will do. Nine Six Kilo.”

Mike Lepore
West Des Moines, Ind.

Camden, Australia, (YSCN, near Sydney) is Class D airspace and a busy GA and training airport. On taxi, I took note of traffic in the circuit: a confident female voice in a Chipmunk and a Ci-tabria. I was cleared for an immediate, rolling-start takeoff and the Chipmunk was cleared to land with the Citabria number two. I later found out the Chipmunk groundlooped on landing:
Camden Tower: “Citabria India Kilo Victor, go around.”
Tower: “Chipmunk Hotel Alfa Hotel, are you all right?”
Chipmunk (audibly deflated): “I’m OK.”
Tower: “Do you need any assistance with taxiing?”
Chipmunk: “No assistance required.”
Tower (relieved): “I’m going to have a cup of coffee after this.”
Chipmunk (colour returning to her voice): “And I’m going for a gin.”

Niels Kofahl
Sydney, Australia

While departing Greere, S.C., last week on an unusually high-pressure-altitude day, we heard the following exchange:
Piper 34T: “Charlotte Approach, Piper Two Four Three Four Tango at 5500 feet with Oscar.”
Charlotte Approach: “Piper Two Four Three Four Tango, Charlotte Approach. Charlotte altimeter 3046. Squawk 5034.”
Approach (after a brief delay): “Piper Two Four Three Four Tango, Charlotte Approach, I’m not reading your transponder.”
Piper 34T: “Roger Charlotte, we’re squawking 3046.”
Approach: “Uh, Piper, squawk 5034; 3046 is the altimeter setting.”
Me (to my passengers): “Well, at least he didn’t try to set the transponder code into the altimeter.”
Then it occurred to me: Maybe he did.

Denny Carlyle
Blacksburg, Va.

Overheard on CTAF near Orange County airport, N.Y. The pilot was trying to find out which runway was in use:
Elderly Pilot: “Orange County traffic. Can you identify your runway?”
Unknown pilot: “It’s long. It’s black. And it has a long, white, striped line in the middle.”

Soliman Shenouda
Tarrytown, N.Y.

One of our reporting points just northeast of the Deer Valley Airport in Phoenix, Ariz., is a dam. If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it 20 times, yet it still cracks me up:
Deer Valley Tower: “Skylane Six Niner Four Romeo Juliet, traffic one o’clock, over the dam.”
Skylane 694RJ: “Deer Valley Tower, Skylane Six Niner Four Romeo Juliet. We have that dam traffic.”

Rodney M. Jarrell
Phoenix, Ariz.

Overheard departing Raleigh-Durham International:
Raleigh-Durham Departure: “Cirrus Four Three Lima, traffic 11 o’clock and two miles, a banner-towing plane passing from your left to right.”
Cirrus 43L: “Ehhh, we have the banner, but don’t see the plane.”
Departure: “Sir, it will be directly ahead of the banner.”

Brian Donoghue
Cary, N.C.


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