NOTICE TO AIRMEN
Since the NAS is continually evolving, Notices to
Airmen (NOTAM) provide the most current essential
flight operation information available, not known sufficiently
in advance to publicize in the most recent
aeronautical charts or A/FD. NOTAMs provide information
on airports and changes that affect the NAS that
are time critical and in particular are of concern to IFR
operations. Published FAA domestic/international
NOTAMs are available by subscription and on the
Internet. Each NOTAM is classified as a NOTAM (D),
a NOTAM (L), or an FDC NOTAM. [Figure 1-21]
A NOTAM (D) or distant NOTAM is given dissemination
beyond the area of responsibility of a Flight Service
Station (AFSS/FSS). Information is attached to hourly
weather reports and is available at AFSSs/FSSs.
AFSSs/FSSs accept NOTAMs from the following personnel
in their area of responsibility: Airport Manager,
Airways Facility SMO, Flight Inspection, and Air Traffic.
They are disseminated for all navigational facilities that
are part of the U.S. NAS, all public use airports, seaplane
bases, and heliports listed in the A/FD. The complete
NOTAM (D) file is maintained in a computer database at
the National Weather Message Switching Center
(WMSC) in Atlanta, Georgia. Most air traffic facilities,
primarily AFSSs/FSSs, have access to the entire database
of NOTAM (D)s, which remain available for the duration
of their validity, or until published.
A NOTAM (L) or local NOTAM requires dissemination
locally, but does not qualify as NOTAM (D) information.
These NOTAMs usually originate with the Airport
Manager and are issued by the FSS/AFSS. A NOTAM (L)
contains information such as taxiway closures, personnel
and equipment near or crossing runways, and airport
rotating beacon and lighting aid outages. A separate file
of local NOTAMs is maintained at each FSS/AFSS for
facilities in the area. NOTAM (L) information for other
FSS/AFSS areas must be specifically requested directly
from the FSS/AFSS that has
responsibility for the airport
Directory listings include the
associated FSS/AFSS and
NOTAM file identifiers.
FDC NOTAMs are issued by
the National Flight Data
Center (NFDC) and contain
regulatory information such as temporary flight restrictions or amendments to instrument
approach procedures and other current aeronautical
charts. FDC NOTAMs are available through all air
traffic facilities with telecommunications access.
Information for instrument charts is supplied by
Aviation System Standards (AVN) and much of the
other FDC information is extracted from the
NOTAM (D) System.
The Notices to Airmen Publication (NTAP) is published
by Air Traffic Publications every 28 days and
contains all current NOTAM (D)s and FDC NOTAMs
(except FDC NOTAMs for temporary flight restrictions)
available for publication. Federal airway
changes, which are identified as Center Area
NOTAMs, are included with the NOTAM (D) listing.
Published NOTAM (D) information is not provided
during pilot briefings unless requested. Data of a permanent
nature are sometimes printed in the NOTAM
publication as an interim step prior to publication on
the appropriate aeronautical chart or in the A/FD. The
NTAP is divided into four parts:
- Notices in part one are provided by the National
Flight Data Center, and contain selected
NOTAMs that are expected to be in effect on the effective date of the publication. This part is
divided into three sections:
a. Airway NOTAMs reflecting airway changes that fall within an ARTCC’s airspace;
b. Airports/facilities, and procedural NOTAMs;
c. FDC general NOTAMs containing NOTAMs that are general in nature and not tied to a specific airport/facility, i.e. flight advisories and restrictions.
- Part two contains revisions to minimum en route
IFR altitudes and changeover points.
- Part three, International, contains flight prohibitions,
potential hostile situations, foreign notices,
and oceanic airspace notices.
- Part four contains special notices and graphics pertaining
to almost every aspect of aviation; such as,
military training areas, large scale sporting events,
air show information, and airport-specific information.
Special traffic management programs
(STMPs) are published in part four.
If you plan to fly internationally, you can benefit by
accessing Class I international ICAO System NOTAMs,
that include additional information. These help you differentiate
IFR versus VFR NOTAMs, assist pilots who
are not multilingual with a standardized format, and may
include a “Q” line, or qualifier line that allows computers
to read, recognize, and process NOTAM content