U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION

ORDER
JO 7110.10X
Effective Date:
April 3, 2014
 
     
Subject:  Flight Services
   Includes:  Change 1 effective 7/24/14

Section 5. Special VFR Operation

4-5-1. AUTHORIZATION

a. Special VFR (SVFR) operations in weather conditions less than VFR minima are authorized:

1. For helicopters and fixed瓀ing aircraft at any location not prohibited by 14 CFR Part 91, Appendix D, Section 3, or when an exception to 14 CFR Part 91, Appendix D, Section 3, has been granted and an associated letter of agreement established.

REFERENCE-
14 CFR Part 91, Appendix D, Section 3, Locations at which fixed瓀ing Special VFR operations are prohibited.

2. Only within surface areas.

3. Only when requested by the pilot.

b. When the primary airport is reporting VFR, SVFR operations may be authorized for aircraft transiting surface areas when the pilot advises the inability to maintain VFR.

NOTE-
Control facilities must always retain SVFR operations authority when IFR operations are being conducted in surface areas.

4-5-2. REQUESTS FOR SPECIAL VFR CLEARANCE

a. Transmit SVFR clearances only for operations within surface areas on the basis of weather conditions. If weather conditions are not reported, transmit an SVFR clearance whenever a pilot advises unable to maintain VFR and requests an SVFR clearance, provided the pilot reports having at least 1璵ile flight visibility.

PHRASEOLOGY-
ATC CLEARS (aircraft identification) TO ENTER/OUT OF/THROUGH (name) SURFACE AREA

and if required,

(direction) OF (name) AIRPORT (specified routing), and

MAINTAIN SPECIAL V璅璕 CONDITIONS,

and if required,

AT OR BELOW (altitude below 10,000 feet MSL),

ATC CLEARS (aircraft identification) (coded arrival or departure procedure) ARRIVAL/DEPARTURE, (additional instructions as required).

b. Transmit clearance for local SVFR operations for a specified period (series of takeoffs and landings, etc.) upon request if the aircraft can be recalled when traffic or weather conditions require. Letters of agreement may be established.

PHRASEOLOGY-
LOCAL SPECIAL V璅璕 OPERATIONS IN THE IMMEDIATE VICINITY OF (name) AIRPORT ARE AUTHORIZED UNTIL (time). MAINTAIN SPECIAL V璅璕 CONDITIONS.

c. If an aircraft operating under visual flight rules attempts to enter, depart, or operate within surface areas contrary to the provisions of 14 CFR Section 91.157 (visual flight rules), ensure the pilot is aware of the current weather conditions. Provide the following information:

1. At airports with commissioned automated weather with continuous automated voice capability, instruct the pilot to monitor the automated broadcast and advise intentions.

PHRASEOLOGY-
MONITOR (location) AUTOMATED WEATHER (frequency). ADVISE INTENTIONS.

2. At airports without a commissioned automated weather, or, if the pilot is unable to receive the automated weather broadcast, issue the most current weather report available. Advise the pilot that the weather is below VFR minima, and request the pilot's intentions.

PHRASEOLOGY-
(Location) WEATHER, CEILING (height), VISIBILITY (miles). (Location) SURFACE AREA IS BELOW V璅璕 MINIMA. AN ATC CLEARANCE IS REQUIRED. ADVISE INTENTIONS.

NOTE-
Helicopters performing hover taxiing operations (normally not above 10 feet) within the boundary of the airport are considered to be taxiing aircraft.

d. At a pilot's request, issue a SVFR clearance, if appropriate, when a SVFR letter of agreement exists between an FSS and the control facility. If no agreement exists, request clearance from the control facility. State the aircraft's location and route of flight.

PHRASEOLOGY-
(Facility name) RADIO. REQUEST SPECIAL V璅璕 CLEARANCE (aircraft identification) (direction) OF (location) AIRPORT (specified routing) TO ENTER/OUT OF/THROUGH (name) AIRPORT (specified routing).

NOTE-
IFR aircraft normally have priority over SVFR aircraft.

1. If the pilot is operating outside surface area and requests SVFR clearance, issue the clearance or if unable, advise the pilot to maintain VFR outside surface area and to standby for clearance.

PHRASEOLOGY-
MAINTAIN V璅璕 OUTSIDE (location) SURFACE AREA. STANDBY FOR CLEARANCE.

2. When an aircraft requests a SVFR clearance to enter surface area during periods of SVFR activity, instruct the pilot to maintain VFR conditions outside surface area pending arrival/recall/departure of SVFR operations.

PHRASEOLOGY-
MAINTAIN V璅璕 CONDITIONS OUTSIDE OF THE (location) SURFACE AREA PENDING ARRIVAL/RECALL/DEPARTURE OF IFR/SPECIAL V璅璕 AIRCRAFT.

3. If the pilot is operating inside the surface area and requests an SVFR clearance, advise the pilot to maintain VFR and standby for clearance.

PHRASEOLOGY-
MAINTAIN V璅璕. STANDBY FOR CLEARANCE.

e. Suspend SVFR operations when necessary to comply with instructions contained in subpara 4񪶰b or when requested by the control facility.

PHRASEOLOGY-
SPECIAL V璅璕 AUTHORIZATION DISCONTINUED. RETURN TO AIRPORT OR DEPART SURFACE AREA. ADVISE INTENTIONS.

After response:

REPORT LANDING COMPLETED/CLEAR SURFACE AREA.

4-5-3. VISIBILITY BELOW 1 MILE

a. When the ground visibility is officially reported at an airport as less than 1 mile, treat requests for SVFR operations at that airport by other than helicopters as follows:

NOTE-
14 CFR Part 91 does not prohibit helicopter Special VFR flights when visibility is less than 1 mile.

1. Inform departing aircraft that ground visibility is less than 1 mile and that a clearance cannot be issued.

PHRASEOLOGY-
(Location) VISIBILITY (value). A璗瑿 UNABLE TO ISSUE DEPARTURE CLEARANCE.

2. Inform arriving aircraft operating outside of the surface area that ground visibility is less than 1 mile and, unless an emergency exists, a clearance cannot be issued.

PHRASEOLOGY-
(Location) VISIBILITY (value). A璗瑿 UNABLE TO ISSUE ENTRY CLEARANCE UNLESS AN EMERGENCY EXISTS.

3. Inform arriving aircraft operating within the surface area that ground visibility is less than 1 mile and request the pilot's intentions. Relay the pilot's response to the control facility immediately.

PHRASEOLOGY-
(Location) VISIBILITY (value). ADVISE INTENTIONS.

b. When weather conditions are not officially reported at an airport and the pilot advises the flight visibility is less than 1 mile, treat request for SVFR operations at that airport by other than helicopters as follows:

NOTE-
14 CFR Part 91 prescribes use of officially reported ground visibility as the governing ground visibility for VFR and SVFR operations at airports where it is provided and landing or takeoff flight visibility where it is not.

1. Inform departing aircraft that a clearance cannot be issued.

PHRASEOLOGY-
UNABLE TO ISSUE DEPARTURE CLEARANCE.

2. Inform arriving aircraft operating outside the surface area that unless an emergency exists, a clearance cannot be issued.

PHRASEOLOGY-
ATC UNABLE TO ISSUE ENTRY CLEARANCE UNLESS AN EMERGENCY EXISTS.

3. Request intentions of arriving aircraft operating within surface areas. Relay the pilot's response to the control facility immediately.

PHRASEOLOGY-
ADVISE INTENTIONS.

c. Transmit a clearance to scheduled air carrier aircraft to conduct operations if ground visibility is not less than 1/2 mile.

d. Transmit a clearance to an aircraft to fly through surface area if the pilot reports flight visibility is at least 1 statute mile.

4-5-4. PREDESIGNED SPECIAL VFR CLEARANCES

Transmit predesigned SVFR clearances only during those periods authorized by the control facility.

NOTE-
The control facility may rescind this authorization at any time.

a. Apply these procedures only to aircraft equipped with a functioning two瓀ay radio. Refer all requests for no璻adio SVFR operations to the control facility.

b. Transmit clearances so that only one aircraft at a time operates in surface area unless:

1. Otherwise authorized by a letter of agreement between the control facility and the FSS.

2. A pilot requests and all pilots agree that they will maintain visual separation while operating in surface area.

PHRASEOLOGY-
MAINTAIN VISUAL SEPARATION FROM (aircraft type).

 

 
Return to Air Traffic Publications Library Return to Flight Services JO 7110.10 Home Page