Runway Safety Madness - Tonque N' Cheek Created by Rod Machado
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Nobody moves, nobody gets hurt. That's my new strategy for preventing runway incursions. It's a reasonable plan, given that these events have actually increased since the FAA began seriously collecting statistics on the issue. That's right. Despite the implementation of new rules and airport signage, incursions continue to increase year after year (about a 25% increase since 2013). If I were superstitious I might suggest we stop doing things to reduce runway incursions so that their numbers will decrease to some previous level. Unfortunately the "Don't look at it and it will go away" trick probably won't work here.
These days, the unauthorized presence of an airplane (or part of it) on a runway is sure to get the controller's attention, and not in a good way, either. For instance, if even an inch of your spinner crosses the runway hold lines without a clearance, that's a runway incursion... no matter how you spin it. Recently, a friend was holding short of a runway (close to the hold bars) when the tower instructed him to execute a 180-degree turn and taxi to another intersection. My friend said that he'd happily comply but only if his left wing could get a clearance onto then off the runway during the pivoting turn. The controller obliged by clearing his left wing onto, then off the runway. Was he being a smarty pants? If he was, at least he's a violation-free smarty pants.