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Runway Incursion Danger

Runway Incursions:

Runway incursions create dangerous situations that can lead to serious accidents. A runway incursion occurs when an aircraft, vehicle, person, or object on the ground creates a collision hazard or results in a loss of separation with an aircraft taking off, intending to take off, landing, or intending to land. Reducing the number of runway incursions will lessen the probability of accidents that potentially involve fatalities, injuries, and significant property damage.

2000 Results:

DOT did not meet the target, and the trend is in the opposite direction from the goal. Runway incursions increased to 429 from 322 in 1999, a 33% increase. Runway incursions fall into three general classifications: operational errors, pilot deviations, and vehicle/pedestrian deviations, with different characteristics and rates of change.

* Total Pilot Deviations, the largest category of runway incursions, increased by more than 38%. Over half the deviations were attributable to communications lapses and pilotsí unfamiliarity with airports.

* Total vehicle/pedestrian deviations were up by more than 12%, almost two-thirds of which were due to maintenance, construction, and security or emergency vehicle deviations.

* Operational errors increased by more than 7%, mostly attributable to communications and procedural lapses.

The main causal factors for runway incursions continue to be communications, airport knowledge, and situational awareness when operating on the airport surface. Improved guidelines and incident reporting provisions resulted in increased reporting, and revealed shortcomings in both areas. The FAA appointed a Director of Runway Safety, and broadened the programís approach by creating a comprehensive Runway Safety Program. Using this approach, FAA conducted a series of regional runway Safety Workshops, reaching out to all interested members of the aviation community, and culminating in a Human Factors Symposium, and Runway Safety National Summit. This summit focused on recommendations, actions, and results from regional workshops, the Human Factors Symposium, and other industry-wide activities to improve runway safety.

The FAA published a National Blueprint for Runway Safety, containing major action areas. FAA began implementation of the near-term initiatives in October 2000. Regional runway safety managers were selected; a centralized library of training, education and awareness was established; and improved runway marking standards were promulgated.

Note on data:

DOT has changed the data frame to a fiscal year basis in order to facilitate timely performance reporting, and is adding a rate of incursions per 100,000 airport operations to better display the operational context for this measure. Adding a rate does not diminish our focus on eventually eliminating this potential source of aviation fatalities.

External Factors:

Increases in airport operations raise the risk of runway incursions. Some of the additional factors that contribute to the complexity of this safety problem are aircraft of different types and capabilities moving in close proximity; weather changes that impact visibility and conceal normal visual cues; unclear signs and surface markings; pilots unfamiliar with an airport; and complex and varied airport geometry.



This information came from a
DOT online article.

*** Any law, statute, regulation or other precedent is subject to change at any time ***

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