A project for safety at Eros

Most of my last days working for ICAO in Namibia are spent in a project to improve safety at Eros airport.

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The project is lead by the Eros ATS unit manager, Christine Eiman. Two other controllers are involved and two ICAO advisors are supporting; Rob and I. 150217

I had the opportunity to return to the ATC centre and to a job I was very involved in three years ago; simulator exercise production. This time in an attempt to use the Eurocat radar simulator as a 2D Tower simulator.150223a

I and Rob quickly learned how to be simulator pilots…150223b

…and I think we managed fairly well in making the aircraft take off and land, follow traffic circuits and the suggested new procedures.150223c

After a few simulations Christine and Mikhail were convinced. This will be a great improvement for the Air Traffic Management at Eros airport.150225

After the tests in the simulator the team was ready to present the ideas to the airspace users. Good discussions followed with valuable inputs from the pilots view. These inputs were incorporated and then…150304a

…it was time for real tests. Richard Becker at Windhoek Flight Training Center offered us to test fly the new routes for free!

150304bAfter more than an hour in the air we had learned more. We could see that the routes were flyable but also that one entry point was too difficult to identify from the air and had to be replaced.

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This week the Project was presented to the Namibian Airspace Committee.

There is however more remaining in the project. I am preparing material for the AIP amendments, there will be more airspace user consultation, there will be training for controllers, there will be safety assessments and more. But the continuation will be done without my assistance…

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2 Responses to A project for safety at Eros

  1. Rob Grant says:

    Better late than never: the entry exit points were introduced in 2015 – a great success!. As I left Namibia in December 2016 two VFR routes were in operation: VFR Route 1 to the GFA and beyond and VFR Route 2 to the south over the ridge line.
    From a high incident rate in the unstructured airspace around Eros, to the now almost incident free Eros airspace is a joy to behold.
    The three members of the team , Mikki, Christine and Erik are to be congratulated for their determination and hard work; even more so when one considers some of the vitriol and selfishness displayed by a small number of pilots at Eros wanting to stay with the “old ways which were safer”. What utter nonsense when statistics prove otherwise.

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