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Midair Collisions Prompt Recommendations for Improvement of ATC Radar Systems 6 pages. [PDF 55K]
The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board said that air traffic control radar systems should track all primary (no-transponder) aircraft targets and conspicuously display the targets on controllers’ radar scopes. The recommendation was generated by investigations of two fatal accidents involving the failure of controllers to see primary targets and to warn pilots of conflicting traffic.
Aircraft Operators Need Strategies To Respond to an Aircraft Accident 16 pages. [PDF 93K]
Lessons learned from disaster-response workshop apply to any organization in the aviation industry that has responsibilities after an aircraft accident. Aircraft accidents occur rarely, but aviation regulators, investigative agencies, news media, and families of passengers and crewmembers expect that aircraft operators and airports will respond appropriately.
Gulfstream II Collides with Stalled, Unlighted Vehicle After Tower Controller’s Clearance to Land 8 pages. [PDF 56K]
The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board said that the flight crew received a clearance to land on the same runway where the tower controller previously had issued a clearance for electricians to repair the runway-centerline lights. Other factors were darkness, partial failure of the runway-centerline lights, the vehicle’s loss of engine power, and a failure to have adequate emergency-backup lighting.
Effects of Napping on ATC Night-shift Performance 8 pages. [PDF 53K]
An experimental study of the effects of planned napping by U.S. air traffic controllers during simulated work on a night shift found significant benefits, including enhanced ability to complete tasks and greater vigilance. Whether they had a 45-minute nap or a 120-minute nap, however, all controllers found arising from sleep moderately difficult and reported low-to-moderate feelings of being rested.
Special Double Issue: Wildlife Strikes Are an Increasing Hazard to U.S. Civil-aircraft Operations 28 pages. [PDF 129K]
A report by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration shows that wildlife strikes to U.S. civil aircraft increased by more than 50 percent from 1991 through 1997.