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FAA Controllers to Use New Terminology Prior to TakeoffAugust 31 — Pilots authorized by air traffic controllers to taxi onto runways and await takeoff clearance will be instructed to “line up and wait” rather than “position and hold” beginning on September 30 under new terminology adopted by the Federal Aviation Administration. The new terminology, which was recommended by the National Transportation Safety Board, conforms to terminology used internationally under International Civil Aviation Organization guidelines.

A safety analysis conducted by the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization Terminal Services determined that adopting the phrase “line up and wait” will eliminate confusion, particularly among pilots who also fly overseas, and further reduce the risk of runway incursions.

Beginning September 30, controllers will state the aircraft’s call sign, state the departure runway and then instruct pilots to “line up and wait,” i.e., “United 451, Runway 33L, line up and wait.” The phrase, “traffic holding in position” will continue to be used to advise other aircraft that traffic has been authorized to line up and wait on an active runway.

The FAA will continue to emphasize that pilots are not permitted to cross any runway encountered while taxiing without explicit instructions from controllers.