Aviation In Canada

Sunday, September 04, 2005

ATC Radio Chatter

This is a recent exchange between a pilot outbound to Deer Lake from Halifax (a track of about 063°M) and Halifax Terminal. The pilot was given a heading of 075 for "vectors around traffic". The traffic was inbound from Deer Lake and not on the terminal's frequency yet.

Pilot: "Are we able to go direct Deer Lake yet?"
ATC: "No, you're on vectors around traffic."
Pilot: "Well, we don't see any traffic."
ATC: "Fly heading 060 and you'll probably get a pretty good look at him."

Seriously, though, there are a number of answers that could have come from that comment. "I guess I'm doing my job well then." Or how about, "That's what ATC is all about." There used to be one group of pilots who flew the Moncton FIR regularly and they often made remarks like, "Where's my traffic?" as if they were expecting us to say, "Oh, you caught me. I actually didn't have any for you. You can proceed on course now." When all it did in the short term is waste air time on the radio, and in the long term lead to a bad working relationship. Thankfully, there isn't a lot of this going around any more, but obviously still a few pilots who think that way.