Section 2. Initial Processing/Verification
- The OEG must verify each obstruction evaluation case to ensure that the submitted site elevation and coordinates appear to be correct and that all necessary information has been included. Verification must include, as a minimum, the following actions:
- Compare the submitted site depiction to the submitted coordinates when plotted.
- Compare the submitted site elevation to the National Elevation Dataset (NED) in the area of the submitted coordinates when plotted. Other resources may include, but are not limited to, the topographical chart contour elevation intervals, publicly available geographic information systems, or nearby prior studies.
- If a survey is submitted, compare the information contained on the survey, with the submitted information and the site as plotted.
- If the submission involves an existing structure, compare the submitted information to the digital obstacle file, with the previous aeronautical study (if any), and possibly the FCC tower registration information.
- Ensure that the submission provides a complete description and clearly explains the reason for submission. The submission should include sufficient information to allow each division/service area office to accomplish its specialized portion of the obstruction evaluation.
- If the submission involves a structure that would normally radiate frequencies, ensure that the frequencies and effective radiated power are included.
- If the submission involves a structure over 200 feet AGL, ensure marking and/or lighting preferences are part of the submission. Sponsors must be required to specifically request the type of marking and/or lighting they desire when submitting FAA Form 7460-1. They should be encouraged to become familiar with the different type of lighting systems available. The sponsor should obtain information about these systems from the manufacturers. The sponsor can then determine which system best meets his/her needs based on purchase, installation, and maintenance costs. The FAA will consider the sponsor's desired marking and/or lighting system when conducting the aeronautical study.
- If the submission contains errors, discrepancies, or lack of information, the OEG must request resolution by the sponsor and/or the sponsor's representative. If the sponsor does not resolve the issues within 30 days of the written request, the OEG may terminate the aeronautical study.
- If the submission passes verification and there are no unresolved issues, initiate evaluation by other divisions by changing the status in the OE/AAA automation program to “WRK."
It is imperative that all data in the automated OE case file is reviewed and verified for accuracy before proceeding to “Division/Service Area Office Coordination." Any correction or change to the heights and/or coordinates after the divisions/service area offices begin evaluation must require initiating a new aeronautical study.
- Prior to assigning an aeronautical study into the OE/AAA automation program, review the submission for completeness. The following information should be considered:
- Ground elevation of the site (site elevation).
- Above ground elevation of the structure (AGL).
- Latitude and longitude of the structure.
- A 7.5-Minute U.S.G.S. Topographic Map (Quadrangle Chart) depicting the site of the structure.
- If the submission package contains all of the required information, assign an aeronautical study number and initiate an obstruction evaluation study. Exceptions may be made for emergency situations in accordance with 77.17(d).
- If the submission package does not contain the required information, the entire package may be returned to the sponsor with a clear explanation and a request for the sponsor to provide the information necessary to initiate the study.
- For submission packages pertaining to structures that may be time critical, an effort should be made to obtain the required information by telephone. Information received by telephone conversation should be added to case notes. If written confirmation is received from the sponsor, it should be faxed/scanned into the file.
Each division described in paragraph 5-2-2 must evaluate all notices of proposed construction or alteration received regardless of whether notice was required under Part 77, except as follows:
For the purpose of division/service area office coordination, Frequency Management (FM) will be considered separately in addition to Technical Operations Services. It should also be noted that FM responds separately.
- Side Mounted Antennas. Airports, Flight Standards, IFP Service Providers, Technical Operations Services, and the military normally are not required to review OE cases that involve the addition of antennas to a previously studied structure that does not increase in overall height of the structure. FM will continue to evaluate these cases. The FAA must have previously studied the structure and the data of the present case and it must exactly match the data of the previously studied case.
- Marking and Lighting Changes. Airports, Flight Standards, IFP Service Providers, FM, Technical Operations Services, and the military normally are not required to review OE cases which involve only marking and lighting changes. The FAA must have previously studied the structure and the data of the present case and it must exactly match the data of the prior case.
- Temporary Structures. Airports, FM, Department of Homeland Security, and the military normally must not be required to review OE cases which involve temporary structures of a 6 months or less duration. All appropriate divisions/service area offices must review temporary structures of a longer duration.
- IFP OIT normally must not be required to review OE cases that are beyond 14 NM from the airport reference point of the nearest public-use or military airport and the height of the structure is not more than 200 feet above ground level.
- Airports normally must not be required to review OE cases that are beyond the lateral limits of the Part 77 conical surface of a public-use or military airport.
- Flight Standards may review OE cases that are circularized for public comment.
- FM normally must only be required to review OE cases, that involve transmitting frequencies.
Air traffic may request any division to review an OE case on a case-by-case basis. For instance, Flight Standards may be requested to review a marking and lighting change, the DoD may be requested to review a temporary structure if the closest airport is a DoD base, or FM may be requested to review a temporary structure if it radiates a frequency.