One of our members posed an interesting question based on a predicament he faced while trying to fly an instrument approach into Treasure Cay, BHS (MYAT) due to poor visibility.

"I flew a trip to Treasure Cay MTAT last week, and the field was IFR due to visibilty. I had 2 IAP in my Jepp trip kit, and requested the GPS RNAV 14. Miami Center told me that they could not approve this as it had not been flight checked. We were too far away from Nassau (the controlling facility on the plate).... Can you shed some light on this and the proper procedure if a field like this is IFR?"

We have spoken extensively with Miami Center, Nassau Approach as well as the person in charge of Procedures and Airspace for the Bahamas Civil Aviation Department (CAD) and this is what we found:

The bottom line is that ALL of the Instrument Approaches in the Bahamas, with the exception of Nassau (MYNN) and Freeport (MYGF) are NOT AUTHORIZED. Miami Center was concerned that the approaches are within Bahamas airspace and not their airspace and the Bahamas CAD had not briefed them on any flight testing or procedures. Basically, there was a grey area when it came to flying these approaches because Nassau Approach controls the Treasure Cay area airspace but cannot communicate with low flying aircraft nor see low flying aircraft on RADAR. When you communicate with Nassau Radio (which has an antenna in Marsh Harbour), you are not talking to a controller but rather a flight service person who is relaying information to ATC by telephone. However, the Bahamas CAD is referring specific ICAO procedures which indicate that class E airspace cannot be used for Control Zones for Instrument Approaches so they have decided to suspend the use of these approaches based on airspace classification. Unfortunately, the NOTAM for suspending the use of these approaches ONLY appears under NOTAMís for the Nassau airport (MYNN) and does not appear under NOTAMís for any of the airports affected. Pilots should be aware that Jeppesen continues to publish these RNAV approaches with each update cycle of their Terminal Charts.

Bottom line, you cannot use any of the published IAPís for any airport other than Nassau or Freeport. We have sent a copy of the NOTAM to Miami Center and they are going to brief their controllers. We have recommended to the Bahamas CAD that the NOTAM should be published for each airport affected and not only under NOTAMís for Nassau. We have pointed out to Bahamas CAD that Jeppesen continues to publish the approaches that are not authorized.

A0023/14 - WITH THE EXCEPTION OF MYNN AND MYGF RNAV PROC IN THE BAHAMAS ARE NOT AUTH DUE TO AIRSPACE CLASSIFICATION RESTRICTIONS. 25 FEB 19:30 2014 UNTIL 26 MAY 19:30 2014. CREATED: 25 FEB 19:18 2014




Edited by Rick (04/03/14 11:53 AM)
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Rick Gardner
Caribbean Sky Tours