Our Reno-Stead Airport Manager sent out this email to his Stead tenants today, and I received the AOPA link from a couple of other sources.
It’s really easy to get complacent with our preflight planning, especially a ‘simple’ local fun flight. With an airport as large and as professionally run as our Reno-Stead non-towered airport there can easily be things going on or planned about which you have no knowledge UNLESS you do your due diligence and read the NOTAMS and listen to the AWOS EVERY TIME YOU GO OUT TO FLY.
Read and heed….
I received the link above from Larry Cheek.
This is worth sharing because I sometimes people tell me to “put it on AWOS because I don’t check NOTAMs”. It would appear that failure to check and heed closure NOTAMs has pretty steep penalties. I can point to a couple of instances here that it was apparent the pilot neither checked NOTAMs or the AWOS and used a closed surface.
The other thing I am thinking about here…
I tend to send tenant bulletins a lot with closure info. Usually, I will copy my NOTAM into the bulletin. But, these may not be the only NOTAMs for the airport. I always repeat for you to check NOTAMs, but I wonder if I am creating bad habits or a false sense of security?? Are emails and AWOS tags that may not cover everything making us lazy and opening us up for potential violations?
As you read the above, I once had a story like this cut the other way. The threshold of a runway was under construction, so the threshold was closed and displaced so you could use the remaining 4,800’ of the runway. NOTAMs, AWOS, markings, signage, and mailings were all done. A local, home-based pilot touched down in the excavated section, did not have speed, distance, or time on his side and sheared off the landing gear when he hit the open pavement section. Tried to sue the airport. Suit failed because when he called for flight briefing, he hung up when they got to NOTAMs; they had the recording.
Try not to be that guy. Review and comply with NOTAMs.
Safety tip for the month of July, right?