Best Practices for AIRFIELD SAFETY - Pilots
The best practices were developed by FAA staff to help pilots improve safety by giving guidelines that should be followed to keep skills and focus current and vigilant. Remember: over 80% of pilot- caused runway incursions occur during taxi to the departure runway..
- Review and understand airfield signage and markings.
- Review the appropriate airport diagrams. Review any Hot Spots identified on the diagram. Print a copy for use in the cockpit.
- Review airfield NOTAMS and current ATIS for any taxiway closures, runway closures, construction activity, or other airfield specific risks.
- Brief any passengers on the importance to minimize discussions, questions, and conversation during taxi (maintain a “sterile cockpit”).
- Have the airport diagram out and available for immediate reference during taxi.
- Review current ATIS for any taxiway closures, runway closures, construction activity, or other airfield specific risks.
- During radio transmissions, use correct terminology and proper voice cadence.
- Copy the taxi clearance and use the airport diagram to review the taxi route to the assigned runway prior to releasing brakes and beginning taxi.
- Eliminate distractions while taxiing in the operational area.
- Focus attention and have your "eyes out" of the cockpit when taxiing.
- Maintain appropriate taxi speed.
- Be alert to similar call signs operating on the field.
- STOP aircraft on the taxiway and request ATC clarification if there is confusion regarding aircraft position or ATC taxi clearance.
- Prior to crossing any runway during taxi, ensure you have a clearance to cross. Visually check to ensure there is no conflicting traffic prior to crossing the runway.
- If there is any doubt that the runway is clear, reconfirm crossing clearance with ATC.
- Be aware that hold short lines can be as far as 400’ from the runway due to new Precision Obstacle Free Zone (POFZ) requirements.
- Maintain a “sterile cockpit” when taxiing.
- If cleared to “line up and wait”, turn on all exterior lights except take-off/landing lights.Â If you have been holding in position on the runway for more than 90 seconds, or upon seeing a potential conflict, contact the tower.
- When “cleared for takeoff”, turn on all exterior lights, including take-off/landing lights.
- Note that if you see an aircraft in take-off position on a runway with take-off/landing lights ON, that aircraft has most likely received its take-off clearance and will be departing immediately.
- When assigned a departure at an intersection versus a full length takeoff, state “intersection departure” at the end of the take-off clearance readback.
- Conduct "Clearing Turns" to check all areas prior to entering ANY runway.
- Wait until you have exited the active runway and you are sure of your taxi clearance prior to beginning an after-landing checklist
- Follow the same TAXI Best Practices above.
REMEMBER: WHEN IN DOUBT, ASK!