On The Air: July 2013


I was coming out of Long Island, New York on a Saturday afternoon recently, when I heard this:
NY Approach: “DL 123, say your airspeed.”
DL 123: “We’re indicating 270, slowing to 250, DL 123.”
NY Approach: “DL 123, you have two choices: slow to 250 or lose your place in line. Which will it be?”
DL 123: “Ah, DL 123, we’re slowing to 250.”
NY Approach: “Good choice.”

Don Kephart
Skaneateles, New York

At Boston’s Logan airport last week, a frustrated ground controller tried several times to contact an unresponsive airliner that was taxiing on the field. Fed up, he keyed his mic:
“American 123, if you hear this transmission rock your wings!”

Angelo Iannuzzo
Nashua, New Hampshire

Heard this a few weeks ago on Atlanta Center:
Sasquatch Zero: “Atlanta Center, Sasquatch Zero.”
Center: “Aircraft calling say again.”
Sasquatch Zero: “Atlanta Center, Sasquatch Zero.”
Center: “Sasquatch Zero. That’s your call sign?”
Sasquatch Zero: “Affirmative that’s it.”
Center: “Sasquatch Zero, I’ve been here 22 years and never heard a call sign like that.”
Me after a long silence: “Center, if you call traffic and I say “Sasquatch in sight,” then what happens?”
Center: “Get your camera!”

Jim MacFadden
Sharon Springs, New York

The following happened to me on a recent trip to KFCI (Richmond Executive). Conditions gradually improved after my departure in solid IMC and skies were clear as I crossed into Virginia. Since I was going into busy, unfamiliar airspace, I decided to remain IFR until given something I didn`t like.
Washington Center handed me off to a very busy Potomac Approach controller. We soon had this exchange:
Potomac Approach: “Cessna 20052 you may have to hold for a while as there are two IFR aircraft in front of you going into FCI.”
Me: “Potomac Approach, if it will help you out, I will cancel IFR and go VFR from here.”
Potomac Approach: “20052 you da man! IFR cancellation received, frequency change approved, squawk VFR.”

Steve Langford
York, South Carolina

A few years ago while flying back from Miami on V3 I overheard the following exchange between Palm Beach Approach and a State Police helicopter that was patrolling I-95 northbound:
Trooper 1234: “Palm Beach Approach, Trooper 1234.”
Palm Beach Approach: “Trooper 1234 go ahead.”
Trooper 1234: “Be advised that we are making a 180-degree turn and proceeding now southbound over the Interstate.”
Palm Beach Approach: “What is the matter, haven’t made your quota yet?”

Ray Bejarano
Reston, Virginia

Last month I was flying on United Airlines. The pilot had to deviate around some turbulence. On this particular flight we were able to listen to ATC on channel 9 of the entertainment system. Being in the last stages of obtaining my instrument rating, I was listening carefully, hoping to pick up some technique from the pros up front. Upon reaching altitude the pilot came on to say, “It appears that ATC has gotten us to an altitude with only light turbulence, not enough to make us keep you in your seats, so we will turn off the seat belt light, however while seated we ask that you keep your seat belts on.”
There was a chuckle from the controller who came back with, “That’s great, but why don’t you let your passengers know, too.”
A brief silence was followed by, “Ooops” from the pilot.
Without skipping a beat, the pilot came on the cabin intercom to say “For those listening to channel 9, you know that we have reached a safe altitude where we can turn off the seat belt light.”
Made me feel good that it’s not only me who screws up on the mic.

Bill Jacobs
Houston, Texas


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