The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) should “hit the pause button” on its plan to cancel a number of instrument approach procedures, specifically circling approaches, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) says.
The NBAA said Monday that it made the recommendation in comments submitted earlier this month in response to the FAA’s proposal, which was published Oct. 6 in the Federal Register.
In its proposal, the FAA said the cancellations are needed because “the complexity and cost to the FAA of maintaining the IAP [instrument approach procedure] inventory while expanding the new RNAV [area navigation instrument approach procedures] capability is not sustainable.”
With the introduction of RNAV approaches, the total number of approach procedures in the National Airspace System has nearly doubled over the past decade, the FAA said.
The NBAA said that the FAA should continue to evaluate its plan in light of recent issues involving flight management systems and navigation databases. In one case, the NBAA said, a manufacturer temporarily removed more than 10,000 IAPs from its database.
“This has prompted the need for further evaluation prior to the implementation of any policy changes or IAP cancellations to ensure we don’t cancel thousands of IAPs that could result in the loss of all-weather access during one of these glitches,” said Heidi Williams, NBAA’s director of air traffic services and infrastructure.