Airport Advisories at Non-Towered Airports

This report documents the manner in which non-towered airports provide advisories to pilots regarding winds, traffic, and runways in use. Unlike with pilot advisories, there is little guidance available for airport operators in providing airport advisories. The objective of this report is to aggregate available guidance on this topic and document information from non-towered airports with at least 50,000 annual aircraft operations. The report includes a literature review and a telephone interview survey of 165 non-towered airports. More detailed interviews were conducted and used to develop six case examples that document effective airport advisory programs in place at airports. More than 90% of airports that participated in the study provide information to pilots via Automated Surface Observing System (ASOS)/Automated Weather Observing System (AWOS) and wind sock/segmented circle. Approximately one-third provide audible airport advisories, typically through the UNICOM frequency. At 43%, common traffic advisory frequency (CTAF) serves as UNICOM by sharing the same frequency. According to 85%, pilots generally adhere to published procedures, including traffic patterns. At 97%, pilots consistently communicate their intentions over CTAF. At 54%, radio frequency interference (bleed over) is a problem, whereas 11% report it as only a slight problem. Fully 95% of participating airports agree that audible airport advisories are necessary at non-towered airports. This is true even among the majority of non-towered airports currently not providing audible airport advisories, which indicates the perceived value in audible airport advisories by airport managers. Various lessons learned include the efforts by airport staff to minimize runway incursions; enhancements to the airfield; encouragement of communication; pilot meetings; safety reminders; limited access; procedural enhancements; driver training; and additional signage. Common ideas to change airport advisories in an effort to improve aviation safety include using proper phraseology, appending ASOS/AWOS broadcasts with current operationally relevant information as appropriate, and more effectively training personnel staffing the UNICOM station.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 70p
  • Serial:
  • Publication flags:

    Open Access (libre)

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01607665
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 9780309389747
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Project A11-03, Topic S04-15
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Aug 17 2016 9:14AM