Summertime Flying: More than just bright lights and loud noise

Did you know?

The GA fatal accident rate has remained relatively flat over the past five years, despite FAA, NTSB, and industry efforts to improve safety. The FAA's goal is to reduce the GA fatal accident rate by 10% over a 10-year period (2009-2018).

As the warmer temps hit, so does the desire to get airborne and go somewhere. Don't become a victim of "get-there-itis."

The warm and humid summer air usually means one thing for pilots – thunderstorms! Be prepared, learn more:

Sometimes it is better to "just say no" when the weather won't cooperate:

Been out of the "saddle" for a while? Before you jump back in the cockpit, check out

NextGen is now for GA! Here's what you need to know about technologies that can provide weather services to GA pilots.

Flight Information Service – Broadcast (FIS-B) is an FAA data link service that provides meteorological and aeronautical data to the cockpit for aircraft operating in the United States National Airspace System (NAS). FIS-B provides a suite of weather and aeronautical information products so pilots have timely information of regional weather & NAS status/changes that could impact flight. FIS-B is a continuous uplink broadcast over the UAT link from each of the 600+ ADS-B ground-based Radio Stations (RS).

Many pilots are familiar with commercial subscription data link services that are provided via satellite. Let's compare the commercial satellite systems and the FAA's ground-based approach. With the satellite approach, a single broadcast transmitter is providing broadcast data to subscribing users for the entire service area (i.e. the NAS). With the FAA's ground-based approach, which is available subscription-free to pilots equipping with ADS-B In on the UAT link, each RS is broadcasting a specific subset of the FIS-B data centered on that RSs location. FIS-B is limited to line of sight to the RS being used. Consequently, coverage is limited at most GA airports on the airport surface. When airborne, the specific products a pilot receives is dependent on the aircraft's altitude and the FIS-B service volume. Pilots should be aware of FIS-B's capabilities and limitations and be particularly alert and understand the limitations associated with individual products.

Learn more about FIS-B service volumes and products:

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