On The Air: June 2015


The HEVVN intersection lies roughly 10 miles off the coast of the Florida panhandle and connects the major flyways of the Florida Panhandle and the north-south air corridors of the Florida peninsula. Theoretically many aircraft can simultaneously be at HEVVN as long as they are separated by at least 500 feet in altitude.

For balance, there is a SATAN intersection a few miles north of Portsmouth (New Hampshire) International Airport.

John Clarke
Panama City Beach, FL

While flying into White Plains, NY on a busy day, I heard a pilot request flight following. ATC requested his current location, and the pilot replied, “I’m over the Connecticut River.”

The impatient controller shot back, “The Connecticut River is over 400 miles long. I need a distance and direction from an airport, a VOR, or something else I can actually identify.”

Luke Bassett
Portsmouth, NH

I took my friend flying in my Cirrus SR22T shortly after he retired from the left seat at American Airlines. Before takeoff, he suggested that we divide the cockpit duties much as is done in the airlines. He suggested I fly the plane and he would handle the radios. That sounded great by me.

As we taxied out, he called ground control and identified us as American 819X. He similarly identified us to the control tower before takeoff. I chuckled each time and mentioned that we were really a Cirrus.

As we were returning to the airport, he called the tower, and reported in as American 819X. The tower asked if he had been an American Airlines pilot. His answer: 23 years.

Dailey McPeak
Naples, FL

Given that Kansas City is renowned for its excellent Bar-B-Q, it is only appropriate to name the following fixes along the ILS RWY 1R approach: SPICY, BARBQ, TERKY, SMOKE, and RIBBS. And let’s not forget the CHIEF FIVE Departure, ROYAL FIVE Departure, TYGER SIX Arrival and JHAWK SIX Arrival.

Luca F Bencini-Tibo
Weston, Fl

Several years ago, when I was a newly- hatched Part-135 airplane driver, I was on my first IFR charter flight into LAX. Coming from the north as I approached LAX airspace, I received a very long, rapid-fire set of instructions, which began with “Descend and maintain 4000 feet , blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.”

I was overwhelmed. All I understood was the first sentence, so I humbly radioed back, “Please repeat everything after ‘descend and maintain 4000.'”

The irritated controller fired back, “Sir, you’ll have to pay attention! We’re very busy here.”

I replied, “I am paying attention. I’m just stupid.”

There was short pause and then, in a very slow cadence, he repeated the approach instructions. (After several trips on the same route I learned that this was a standard approach clearance, and I was able to read it back with aplomb).

Richard Arnold
Waxahachie, Texas

While leaving Manassas airport on a stormy August afternoon, I found myself having to weave around several storms back and forth across a cold front. I told Potomac TRACON that I would need to deviate left and right to avoid the storms.

The controller replied, “Do your crazy Ivans as needed and let me know when you are back on course.” (“Crazy Ivans” is from the movie Hunt for Red October.)

Charlie Schobel
Atlanta, GA

While flying with Indianapolis Center recently I heard a pilot check in:

“Good morning, Indy. Bonanza 123 checking in at 8000. The last guy said you’re the best controller!”

Pleasant sounding female controller: “Welcome aboard, Bonanza 123, and thank you.”

Me: “That information gives me a great sense of security.”

Bonanza pilot: “Me too. Means we probably won’t hit each other.”

Don C Stansberry
Huntsville, TN

That’s it. We’re out—not enough left for another month. Want reruns? A blank back page? If not, please send us your cleverest (or most embarrassing) moment on the radio—or your favorite fix names or airport names—with a subject of “OTA,” to [email protected]. Be sure to include your name and location.


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