Posted by: RTC Pilot | October 22, 2010

Line Up & Wait

The following is an excerpt taken from FAASTeam noticeĀ  # NOTC2485:

Effective September 30, 2010, U.S. controllers will begin using the term “line up and wait” in place of “position and hold” when instructing a pilot to taxi onto a departure runway and wait for takeoff clearance. Both current and future versions of the phrase are used when takeoff clearance cannot immediately be issued, either because of traffic or other reasons.

Other changes have also made their way into standard ATC lexicon. Effective June 30, 2010, air traffic controllers no longer use the term “taxi to” when authorizing an aircraft to taxi to an assigned takeoff runway. Now, controllers must issue explicit clearances to pilots crossing any runway (active/inactive or closed) along the taxi route. In addition, pilots crossing multiple runways must be past the first runway they are cleared to cross before controllers can issue the next runway-crossing clearance.

As you may recall, previous “taxi to” clearances authorized pilots to cross any runway along the assigned route. One exception to the new rule is at airports where taxi routes between runway centerlines are fewer than 1,000 feet apart. In this case, multiple runway crossings may be issued if approved by the FAA Terminal Services Director of Operations.

The elimination of the “taxi to” phrase will apply only to departing aircraft. Arriving aircraft will still hear the phrase “taxi to” when instructed to taxi to the gate or ramp. However, controllers in these situations still will be required to issue specific crossing instructions for each runway encountered on the taxi route.

Remember, if you’re unsure of any ATC instruction or clearance you’ve heard, contact ATC immediately. It’s always better to check and be certain. And, remember to “line up and wait.”

For More Information:

Pilot/Controller Glossary

Aeronautical Informational Manual (AIM)

Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP)

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