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Final: FAA Issues Rule on RNAV Ops in Remote Locations/Mountainous Terrain

The Helicopter Association International is circulating word about the publication of a final rule and is seeking comments regarding RNAV Ops in the boonies -- despite the fact that the rule, at this point, is a done deal. The FAA's issuance of a final rule amends the regulations to allow the use of published Obstacle Departure Procedures (ODP) or an alternative procedure or route assigned by Air Traffic Control (ATC). The final rule amends the requirements to facilitate compliance and accurately reflect operating conditions in areas in which the terrain impedes communications.

The final rule also amended the communication and navigation equipment requirements for aircraft operations under Visual Flight Rules (VFR). The FAA determined that compliance with the new communications requirements may not be possible in remote locations and areas of mountainous terrain. This final rule is adopted without prior notice and public comment, but the public may comment prior to the effective date of the rule.

This amendment becomes effective June 30, 2009. Commends must be received by June 1, 2009 and should be identified by Docket Number FAA-2002-14002. To submit online, go to http://www.regulations.gov and follow the instructions for sending your comments. To mail, send comments to Docket Operations, M-30, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington DC 20590. To fax, send comments to Docket Operations at 202-493-2251.

FMI: www.hai.org, http://www3.verticalgateway.com/portals/12/rotornews/May%2009/74%20FR%2020202.pdf

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