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6 and ice control plan (SICP). The SICP contains instructions occur for the simple reason that a greater number of vehicles and procedures for the prompt removal or control of snow and than normal are on the movement areas of the airport. Any ice, the positioning of snow off the movement area surfaces, time a vehicle operator drives onto an airport movement area, the selection and application of authorized materials for the exposure of that vehicle to potential aircraft is present. snow and ice control, the timely commencement of snow and A winter season with numerous snow events will increase the ice control operations, and the prompt notification to all air number of vehicles being exposed to aircraft, thus the risk of carriers and users of the airport whenever less than satisfac- an incident or accident can increase unless additional preven- tory conditions exist for safe operation by their aircraft. tive measures are taken. Section 139.329 Pedestrians and Ground Vehicles requires For example, for the period of October 2006 to February an airport operator to limit access to movement areas and 2007, the FAA Great Lakes Region recorded 20 vehicle devi- safety areas to only those pedestrians and ground vehicles ations on airports. Nine of the deviations involved snow necessary for airport operations; establish and implement pro- removal equipment, with six of the nine categorized as run- cedures for the safe and orderly access to, and operation in, way incursions (14). Although any surface incident could movement areas and safety areas by pedestrians and ground result in an accident, runway incursions cause the greatest vehicles; ensure that those having access are under positive risk of a collision having a catastrophic outcome. control of ATCT if in operation, or provide adequate proce- dures to control pedestrians and ground vehicles when ATCT The increased risk caused by the additional snow removal services are not available; and maintain records of personnel vehicles and the length of operational exposure time is further training and accidents or incidents at the airport. compounded by the nature of airport operations and the limitations of humans conducting those operations. Snow Section 139.339 Airport Condition Reporting requires an removal and low visibility conditions present hazards not nor- airport operator to collect and disseminate airport condition mally experienced in daily airport operations. Winter weather information to air carriers using the notice to airmen (NOTAM) conditions create cold, blustery environmental conditions that system and other systems and procedures, as authorized by can be difficult to manage or withstand over long periods. the FAA. It further requires the airport operator to prepare Because snow events can last from one hour to several days, and keep a record of the dissemination of each airport condi- the impact they can have on humans can result in fatigue, ver- tion report to air carrier operators. tigo, disorientation, confusion, and other serious ramifications. Low visibility conditions can result from winds, drifting and In support of an airport operator's obligations to comply blowing snow, or from fog. All these conditions can result in with the regulations, guidance material is provided through operators not being able to determine hold line locations when FAA Advisory Circulars (AC). Advisory circulars contain working on taxiway intersections that lead to the runway, or methods and procedures for compliance that are acceptable recognizing their exact location. As a result, snow removal to the Administrator of the FAA. Three primary ACs that operators may easily cross over a hold short line or not follow support the regulations and provide guidance to the airport air traffic instructions resulting in a runway incursion. operator are: (1) AC 150/5200-30, Airport Winter Safety and Operations (12), (2) AC 150/5210-20 Ground Vehicle Oper- To emphasize the nature of the problem nationally, a list of ations on Airports (3); and (3) AC 150/5200-28 Notices to V/PDs involving snow removal equipment for the period of Airmen (NOTAMs) for Airport Operators (13). October 2006 to April 2007 is provided here (B. Castellano, FAA Division of Airport Safety, Washington, D.C., personal Although airports serving scheduled air carrier operations communication, Sep. 2007). The summary reports of V/PDs are required to have an SICP as part of their ACM, there are are presented as entered into the FAA database [note: reports more than 4,500 other commercial service, cargo, or general listed under Section 2 as surface incidents may well be iden- aviation airports that are not required to have such a plan. tified as incursions under the new incursion definition]. The authority of the FAA to regulate airports is predicated on the airport being served by an air carrier operator. The Vehicle/Pedestrian Deviations Classified remaining airports fall under the purview of their respective as Runway Incursions state or local governments, which may or may not require snow plans. A. 12/6/06 V/PD Non-Hub Airport. Airport vehicle, Truck 39, had previously been authorized to make one VEHICLE/PEDESTRIAN DEVIATIONS turn around on Runway 31 at Taxiway Charlie. Local/ Ground Control observed this operation to be com- It is not clear that there is a higher risk of vehicle and/or air- plete and Truck 39 was clear of the safety area on Taxi- craft incidents at airports without an operating control tower, way C. A Cessna C172, cleared to land on Runway 31 because no reliable or mandatory reporting and tracking was crossing the approach end when Local Control system exists to date. Winter operations at airports present an observed Truck 39 crossing Taxiway C hold lines and increased risk and opportunity for an incident or accident to instructed the vehicle driver to stop. Truck 39 stopped
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7 prior to runway edge. The C172 landed and reached H. 2/14/07 V/PD General Aviation Airport. SNOW 6, an taxi speed 800 ft from Taxiway C. airport snowplow, was working on the edges of Run- B. 1/13/07 V/PD Medium-Hub Airport. Sander 62 was way 5 and then exited the runway at the departure end instructed and read back instructions to hold short of Run- onto Taxiway Alpha. SNOW 6 proceeded to remove way 5 at Taxiway D. Subsequently, Sander 62 crossed snow on the taxiway then reentered Runway 5 without Runway 5 at D as a Continental Express EMBRAER authorization. A Gulfstream GLF4 performing a Run- E145 was on landing roll Runway 5. The E145 was way 5 full-length departure was just rotating near mid- abeam Taxiway M as the vehicle cleared the runway. field when SNOW 6 entered the departure end of the Closest proximity reported was 2,000 ft horizontal. runway. Closest horizontal distance at that point was C. 1/18/07 V/PD Small-Hub Airport. Maintenance M17, 3,000 ft and the GLF4 passed overhead of the departure an airport snow plow, was instructed by Ground end above 300 ft vertical in a climb. Control to hold short of Runway 18 on Runway 9. I. 3/17/07 V/PD Small-Hub Airport. Plow 74, an airport Driver of M17 read back "hold short Runway 18 on vehicle, crossed Runway 29 hold short line at taxi- Runway 27." An Atlantic Southeast CRJ2 was cleared way C without authorization and conflicted with a Jet for takeoff on Runway 18 and was turning the corner Blue EMBRAER E190 that was cleared for takeoff on at approach end when Maintenance M17 crossed Run- Runway 29 full length. Plow 74 stopped prior to the way 18 at Charlie eastbound. Local Control immediately edge of the runway and did not enter. The E190 had canceled the CFJ2's takeoff clearance. The pilot of not yet rolled when takeoff clearance was immediately ASA had observed the vehicle and did not roll. Closest canceled. Closest proximity reported was 2,000 ft proximity reported was 600 ft horizontal. horizontal. D. 2/1/07 V/PD General Aviation Airport. Plow 4, a snow removal vehicle, entered the departure end of Run- Vehicle/Pedestrian Deviations Classified way 6 as a Piper PA31 was on departure roll Runway 6. as Surface Incidents Due to the Piper's takeoff speed, pilot was advised of the vehicle. Ground Control instructed Plow 4 to imme- A. 12/3/06 V/PD Small-Hub Airport. Snow removal was diately clear the runway. Plow 4 cleared the runway in progress with two airport units authorized on the into the grass area at departure end as the PA31 lifted runway. A third unit, Unit 24 snow broom, entered the off approximately 1,500 ft away. approach end of Runway 8 without clearance. No con- E. 2/2/07 V/PD Large-Hub Airport. A snow plow entered flicts reported. Unit 24 then called ATCT for approval Runway 26 between Taxiway R4 and R6 on the Air- and was instructed to continue clearing the runway. craft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) access road. It B. 1/18/07 V/PD General Aviation Airport. Airport 10, proceeded northbound and conflicted with a United a snow removal vehicle, entered Runways 3 and 1 B733 which was landing. The B733 was approxi- without authorization. No conflicts reported. mately 1,283 ft from the snowplow at the time and at C. 1/24/07 V/PD Non-Hub Airport. Broom 1, an airport an estimated speed of 94 knots. The snowplow exited utility vehicle, was instructed to exit Runway 35 and on the north side of the runway with the B733 approx- remain clear. Broom 1 acknowledges then reports clear imately 700 ft away at an estimated 56 knots. and holding short of Runway 35. Local Control clears F. 2/6/07 V/PD Small-Hub Airport. PLOW 36 and an AMR American Eagle EMBRAER E145, on a 3 brooms, conducting snow removal on Runway 9R/27L, visual approach, to land on Runway 35. Local Control had exited the runway and were told to hold short of then observes Broom 1 on Runway 35 near the inter- Runway 27L. PLOW 36 operator read back the hold section of Runway 35 and Taxiway C. Local Control short instruction. Local Control (LC) then issued takeoff instructs Broom 1 to exit the runway. Broom 1 com- clearance on Runway 9R to a Learjet LR35. PLOW 36 plies and exits 35 at the Runway 23 intersection. The reentered Runway 9R at Taxiway B-4 (midfield) head- E145 is approximately 4 to 5 mi final when vehicle ing northbound then made a 180 and exited the run- clears and the E145 is continued inbound for landing. way. The brooms remained holding short. The Lear D. 1/26/07 V/PD Medium-Hub Airport. Local Control overflew PLOW 36 by 50 ft. cleared Sand 2 (airport vehicle) to cross Runway 7R and G. 2/13/07 V/PD Medium-Hub Airport. CITY 81 and to hold short of 7L. Sand 2 acknowledged and Local company, plowing on Runway 19R, were instructed to Control requested driver to read back hold short instruc- hold short of Runway 7R. CITY 81 read back hold tions. Sand 2 read back hold short instructions then short instructions. A snowplow then crossed Runway 7R continued across Runway 7L at Taxiway G. No con- and was in the intersection of 7R/19R when a Conti- flicts reported. nental Express EMBRAER E145, was rolling out on E. 1/31/07 V/PD Medium-Hub Airport. Loader 77, an Runway 7R. The E145 exited at Taxiway R, a normal airport vehicle, called Ground Control from the east exit point, as the snowplow cleared 7R/19R intersection. side requesting to clear snow on the access road up Closest proximity reported was 2,000 ft horizontal, the to Runway 31. Due to this access road intersecting distance from taxiway R to the 7R/19R intersection. Runway 31 inside the runway safety area (RSA) for