Hudson Thoughts

September 17, 2009 by Bruce Landsberg

hudson-seminar-picThis week ASF held a live seminar/webinar in Newark, NJ to discuss the Hudson River corridor collision between a fixed wing aircraft and a sightseeing helicopter. Three hundred sixty pilots turned out and 200 more joined us on the web.

The topic is an emotional one. The FAA and industry formed a working group several weeks ago to figure out what steps should be taken to make the corridor safer for all. Our seminar reviewed the accident, discussed the corridor and what many of the proposed changes would look like.

There was a least some consensus on the need for stricter rules regarding the use of the radio, reporting points, entry and exit points. The Terminal Area Chart will be enlarged with much more detail.

One area that was “warmly discussed” was the proposed altitude separation between transient or through traffic and local flights. Under the proposed rules, the ceiling of the airspace would be expanded to 1,300′ from the current 1,100′ with local traffic staying below 1,000′. The idea is to separate the air tours and helicopter traffic from those flying up or down the corridor – ostensibly one of the factors contributing to the August collision.

SA15There were pros and cons discussed at the seminar and we may ultimately get to the point where nobody is completely satisfied. That may be the best indication of a workable solution. Two objectives to keep in mind – One, we want the corridor to stay open and useful to as many users as possible. Two, it needs to be done in safety. Despite being the only collision in the corrdior for 45 years, aviation is held to a much different standard than other forms of transport. Stay tuned

You can read more here-Fuller Testifies on Hudson River Corridor.

Bruce Landsberg
Senior Safety Advisor, Air Safety Institute

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