For Immediate Release
January 4, 2018
Contact: Marcia Alexander-Adams
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is actively working to improve runway safety areas (RSAs) at commercial service airports by the end of 2015. The RSA is typically 500 feet wide and extends 1,000 feet beyond each end of the runway. It provides a graded area in the event that an aircraft overruns, undershoots, or veers off the side of the runway. Many airports were built before the current 1,000-foot RSA standard was adopted approximately 20 years ago. In some cases, it is not practicable to achieve the full standard RSA because there may be a lack of available land. There also may be obstacles such as bodies of water, highways, railroads, and populated areas or severe drop-off of terrain.
The FAA began conducting research in the 1990s to determine how to improve safety at airports where the full RSA cannot be obtained. Working in concert with the University of Dayton, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and the Engineered Arresting Systems Corporation (ESCO) of Logan Township, NJ, a new technology emerged to safely arrest overrunning aircraft. EMAS uses crushable material placed at the end of a runway to stop an aircraft that overruns the runway. The tires of the aircraft sink into the lightweight material and the aircraft is decelerated as it rolls through the material.
Benefits of the EMAS Technology
The EMAS technology improves safety benefits in cases where land is not available, or not possible to have the standard 1,000-foot overrun. A standard EMAS installation can stop an aircraft from overrunning the runway at approximately 80 miles per hour. An EMAS arrestor bed can be installed to help slow or stop an aircraft that overruns the runway, even if less than a standard RSA length is available.
As of October 2014, there are two manufacturers of EMAS products that meet the FAA requirements of advisory circular 150-5220-22B, “Engineered Materials Arresting Systems for Aircraft Overruns.” The FAA must review and approve each EMAS installation .
EMASMAX® is the latest, most durable version of ESCO’s EMAS, developed with and technically accepted by the FAA. EMASMAX arrestor beds are composed of blocks of lightweight, crushable cellular cement material designed to safely stop airplanes that overshoot runways.
Runway Safe EMAS is a foamed silica bed which is made from recycled glass and is contained within a high-strength plastic mesh system anchored to the pavement at the end of the runway. The foamed silica is poured into lanes bounded by the mesh and covered with a poured cement layer and treated with a top coat of sealant.
Both EMAS products are located at the end of the runway and are typically the full width of the runway. The length depends on the airport configuration and the aircraft fleet using the airport.
Current FAA Initiatives
As of December 31, 2015, the FAA's Office of Airports has made RSA improvements at more than 500 commercial airports. This means that all practicable improvements, including the use of EMAS technology, have been made at approximately 1,000 runway ends at these airports. The RSAs have been improved to full standards or to the extent practicable, not including the relocation of FAA-owned navigational equipment.
To date, there have been 12 incidents where ESCO’s EMAS has safely stopped 12 overrunning aircraft with a total of 284 crew and passengers aboard those flights.
|Date||Crew and Passengers||Incident|
|May 1999||30||A Saab 340 commuter aircraft overran the runway at JFK Airport in New York|
|May 2003||3||A Gemini Cargo MD-11 overran the runway at JFK Airport in New York|
|January 2005||3||A Boeing 747 overran the runway at JFK Airport in New York|
|July 2006||5||A Mystere Falcon 900 overran the runway at Greenville Downtown Airport in South Carolina|
|July 2008||145||An Airbus A320 overran the runway at Chicago O'Hare Airport in Chicago, IL|
|January 2010||34||A Bombardier CRJ-200 regional jet overran the runway at Yeager Airport in Charleston, WVA|
|October 2010||10||A G-4 Gulfstream overran the runway at Teterboro Airport in Teterboro, NJ|
|November 2011||5||A Cessna Citation II overran the runway at Key West International Airport in Key West, FL|
|October 2013||8||A Cessna 680 Citation overran the runway at Palm Beach International in West Palm Beach, FL|
|January 2016||2||A Falcon 20 overran the runway at Chicago Executive Airport in Chicago, IL|
|October 2016||37||A Boeing 737 overran the runway in Flushing, NY|
|April 2017||2||A Cessna 750 Citation overran the runway at Burbank Airport in Burbank, CA|
EMAS Installations with ESCO EMAS
Currently, ESCO's EMAS is installed at 109 runway ends at 67 airports in the United States, with plans to install 6 EMAS systems at 5 additional U.S. airports.
|Airport||Location||# of Systems||Installation Date(s)|
|( ) Bed replaced|
|* Widened in 2008|
|** General aviation airport|
|*** retrofitted bed|
|+ Reliever airport|
|JFK International||Jamaica, NY||2||1996(1999)/2007 (2014)|
|Minneapolis St. Paul||Minneapolis, MN||1||1999(2008)|
|Little Rock||Little Rock, AR||2||2000/2003|
|Rochester International||Rochester, NY||1||2001|
|Burbank||Burbank, CA||1||2002* (2017)|
|Baton Rouge Metropolitan||Baton Rouge, LA||1||2002|
|Greater Binghamton||Binghamton, NY||2||2002 (2012)/2009***|
|Greenville Downtown||Greenville, SC||1||2003**/2010***|
|Barnstable Municipal||Hyannis, MA||1||2003|
|Roanoke Regional||Roanoke, VA||1||2004|
|Fort Lauderdale International||Fort Lauderdale, FL||4||2004, 2014|
|Dutchess County||Poughkeepsie, NY||1||2004**|
|LaGuardia||Flushing, NY||4||2005 (2014)/2015|
|Boston Logan||Boston, MA||2||2005/2006 (2012) (2014)|
|Laredo International||Laredo, TX||1||2006/2012***|
|San Diego International||San Diego, CA||1||2006|
|Chicago Midway||Chicago, IL||2||2006/2007****|
|Merle K (Mudhole) Smith||Cordova, AK||1||2007|
|Charleston Yeager||Charleston, WV||1||2007|
|Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Intl.||Wilkes-Barre, PA||2||2008|
|San Luis Obispo||San Luis Obispo, CA||2||2008|
|Newark Liberty International||Newark, NJ||2||2008/2015|
|Charlotte Douglas International||Charlotte, NC||1||2008|
|St. Paul Downtown||St. Paul, MN||2||2008+|
|Worcester Regional||Worcester, MA||2||2008/2009**|
|Reading, Regional||Reading, PA||1||2009**|
|Kansas City Downtown||Kansas City, MO||2||2009+/2010|
|Smith Reynolds||Winston-Salem, NC||1||2010|
|New Castle County||Wilmington, DE||1||2010|
|Key West International||Key West, FL||2||2010/2015|
|Telluride Regional||Telluride, CO||2||2010|
|Palm Beach||Palm Beach, FL||1||2011|
|Martin County||Stuart, FL||2||2011|
|Cleveland Hopkins||Cleveland, OH||2||2011|
|Augusta State||Augusta, ME||2||2011|
|New Bern||New Bern, NC||1||2012|
|Burke Lakefront||Cleveland, OH||1||2013|
|San Francisco||San Francisco, CA||4||2014|
|T.F. Green||Providence, RI||3||2014/2015/2017|
|Chicago Executive||Wheeling, IL||2||2014/2015|
|Reagan National||Washington, DC||3||2014/2015|
|Oakland International||Oakland, CA||1||2015|
|Lehigh Valley||Allentown, PA||2||2015|
|John Tune||Nashville, TN||1||2015|
|Rutland||Rutland, VT||1||fall 2015|
|Sikorsky||Bridgeport, CT||1||fall 2015|
|McAllen International||McAllen, TX||1||fall 2015|
|Sandiford||Louisville, KY||1||fall 2015|
|Boca Raton||Boca Raton, FL||2||2017|
Additional ESCO projects currently under contract
|Airport||Location||# of Systems||Expected Installation Date(s)|
|Hilton Head Island||Hilton Head, SC||1||2017|
EMAS Installations Using Runway Safe EMAS
Currently, Runway Safe EMAS is installed at 4 runway ends at 1 airport in the U.S.
|Airport||Location||# of Systems||Installation Date(s)|
|Chicago Midway||Chicago, IL||4||fall 2014/2015/2016|