NCAA alerts pilots, airline operators on bad weather
The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has asked pilots and airline operators to take caution during the dry season due to dangerous weather conditions.
The NCAA gave the warning in an Advisory Circular with reference no AC: NCAA-AEROMET – 34 signed by its Director-General, Musa Nuhu, and addressed to all Pilots and Airline Operators on Sunday.
The advisory which was initiated by the agency’s Directorate of Aerodrome and Airspace Standards (DAAS) followed the Seasonal Climate Prediction (SCP) issued by the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMET) recently.
The NiMET had predicted cessation of rainfall and weather associated with the Dry Season in Nigeria from late December to March/April 2023.
The advisory was intended to alert pilots about the nature of weather associated with the dry season in Nigeria ranging from light/moderate to severe dust haze and sometimes early morning fog which can sometimes reduce the horizontal visibility to below the aerodrome operating template.
With the issuance of this circular, Advisory Circular AC: NCAA – AEROMET 33 is accordingly canceled.
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The NCAA listed the effects of this hazardous weather on flight operations to include air-to-ground visibility reduction due to haze dust or fog and reduction of aerodrome visibility below the prescribed operating minima, among others.
It read: “Closure of the airspace by Air Traffic Controllers when any of these conditions in (3) are observed or forecast by NIMET; strict adherence to published aerodrome weather minima by Flight Crews/Operators and Air Traffic Controllers (ATC).
“Pilots/Flight Crew Members shall obtain adequate departure, en-route, and destination weather information and briefing from NIMET Aerodrome Meteorological Offices and Stations prior to flight operations and exercise maximum restraint whenever adverse weather is observed.
“Operators shall ensure that all necessary measures are put in place to cushion the effects of delay or cancellations on their passengers.
“While the authority urges all passengers to exercise patience and understanding during this period as their safety is of utmost importance, stakeholders should ensure strict compliance to this Advisory Circular as violations would be viewed seriously.”