Aviation airspace is getting congested
It’s all over the news lately – people are back to flying, and they’re back in droves. So much so that the congestion of aviation airspace is becoming a hot topic. Airline flights are full, business aviation is booming, general aviation is back, and we also need to watch out for unmanned aerial vehicles, a segment of aviation that is growing exponentially.
There’s no question that it’s getting busy up there. It will get even busier if we can find a way to fill all the empty pilot seats. Thank goodness for mandatory ADS-B equipment and our friends in Air Traffic Control, but even they are struggling.
I’m not alone with my concerns about crowded skies. A coalition of six general aviation organizations are worried about the increasing congestion levels within our National Airspace System (NAS) and are looking at ways to make the skies safer.
The group sent a letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg asking the Department of Transportation (DOT) to work with them on the many issues facing aviation today. The coalition includes AOPA, EAA, GAMA, HAI, NATA, and NBAA – influential organizations serving a large percentage of aviators. They want a meeting with the DOT to discuss how the General Aviation community can help to improve our aviation system.
Although we all know that the airlines are struggling with their issues, we also know that their disruptions trickle down to all aviation users. For example, acute air traffic control shortages, scheduling difficulties because of pilot shortages, worsening weather conditions (especially severe), and ever-increasing traffic conditions affect how well the airspace system operates.
The coalition is looking for ways to assist the DOT in its goal to operate a system that runs safely and efficiently while equitably serving all stakeholders. The rest of us might benefit if they can control the looming airline crisis. Upgrading our aviation airspace to a state-of-the-art smooth running machine sounds like a win/win for all of us.