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Top Dangerous Airports In The U.S (Approach & TO)?  
User currently offlinerohanghosh From United States of America, joined Apr 2011, 48 posts, RR: 0
Posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 7428 times:

What are the Top Dangerous Airports in the U.S in terms of approach and takeoff?
I got a lot of frequent flier miles that are about to expire and I want to take a round trip flight on one such trip based on what you guys suggest. Thanks in advance.

[Edited 2011-05-21 20:53:43]

13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineBrick From United States of America, joined Aug 1999, 1589 posts, RR: 7
Reply 1, posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 7349 times:

The airport for Vail / Eagle County Airport (EGE) in Colorado is probably the most hazardous for the take-off phase of flight. Departure is to the west with a large hill right in close proximity of the runway. Departures require an immediate left turn to avoid terrain.

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User currently offline4holer From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 3047 posts, RR: 9
Reply 2, posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 7305 times:

Just to clarify before you get people posting about grass strips in nthe Rockies or gravel beaces in Alaska, you are obviously asking about airports with mainline commercial service, right?


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User currently offlineUTAH744 From United States of America, joined Jul 2009, 207 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 7213 times:

Quoting Brick (Reply 1):
Quoting Brick (Reply 1):
The airport for Vail / Eagle County Airport (EGE) in Colorado is probably the most hazardous for the take-off phase of flight. Departure is to the west with a large hill right in close proximity of the runway. Departures require an immediate left turn to avoid terrain.

Amen. First time I went in there it was solid IFR down close to minimums. The approach in the B757 is full LNAV and VNAV and when we broke out all of the visual references were where they were susposed to be so the landing was normal. The second time it was clear as a bell and again we used the full LNAV and VNAV and it was an eye opener. We were descending through the mountain vallies. I hadn't realized how close we were to terrain the first time.



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User currently offlineweb500sjc From United States of America, joined Sep 2009, 750 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 7045 times:
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around so cal i hear the most difficult is KAVX, Catalina. it has cliffs on either end of the runway, makes it a interesting visual illusion. the wind also comes over the departure side of the runway, and falls down on the arrival end, creating a down draft on final (but that's assuming the wind is blowing the right way- the other day i saw a sustained 30kt crosswind component.)

but that is an airport without scheduled service- if you want scheduled service there is SAN or SNA.



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User currently offlineCALPSAFltSkeds From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 2727 posts, RR: 9
Reply 5, posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 6910 times:

KSAN (busiest single runway commercial airport in the US), is surrounded by residential property and rising terrain on both ends of the 9,501 ft. single runway. There is no ILS on the most used runway, Runway 27. The approach slope for RW27 is much higher than standard due to terrain on the final approach. RW 27 has a displaced threshold due to terrain and buildings (plus a gas station) at the east end of the runway. The displaced threshold allows a Runway Protection Zone away from these buildings (but not all objects) and allows the arrivals to stay above the terrain on final.

The sole ILS on RW 9 has high minimums from what I've been told. There is no crushable concrete on the east end of runway 9 for overruns, which has shortened the usable runway length for landings. RW 9 must be used for arrivals during low ceiling weather conditions.

If east traffic is used due to Santa Ana winds, low ceilings or Winter storms, many departures cannot use RW9 due to terrain at the east end of the runaway. This creates head-to-head operations with landings on 9 and some tailwind departures on 27.

While all of these problems exist, the FAA has increased standards to consider the obstructions, etc., KSAN has long been considered "dangerous" by many and ranked as such over the years.


User currently onlineHPRamper From United States of America, joined May 2005, 4145 posts, RR: 8
Reply 6, posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 6791 times:

I've heard some of the Alaska Panhandle airports are pretty tough. And no, these aren't gravel strips. JNU comes to mind but from what I've heard there are worse.

User currently offlineC767P From United States of America, joined Oct 2008, 893 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 6765 times:

Quoting web500sjc (Reply 4):
around so cal i hear the most difficult is KAVX, Catalina.

In SoCal at small GA airports with no scheduled service, I think Big Bear City (L35) has more interesting approaches compared to AVX. Of course, the other day with those high surface winds, AVX would have been deadly. Both can make for some interesting approaches, I have just seen more interesting ones at L35.

Quoting CALPSAFltSkeds (Reply 5):
KSAN

I don’t think there is anything dangerous about Lindbergh. Things mentioned definitely can take its toll on operations when weather does not cooperate, but not really sure about making it unsafe.


User currently offlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 8, posted (3 years 7 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 6609 times:

While some airports are indeed in fairly close quarters and may require a little extra work from the flight crews, if you are looking for a real white knuckle experience you're likely to be somewhat disappointed. What most of these airports are really is just a fairly modest reduction in the margin of safety, there really are very few airports throughout the world that actually push the limits of aircraft and their crews. Just because it made some Travel Channel top 10 or whatever does not mean that you are cheating death with each trip to San Diego.

Quoting CALPSAFltSkeds (Reply 5):
There is no crushable concrete on the east end of runway 9 for overruns, which has shortened the usable runway length for landings.

It appears, based on Google Earth, that they probably need the entire displaced threshold for departures so reducing it for installation of EMAS would be impractical. Even with that, it appears that there is ~6700 feet available for landing, which is slightly more than what's available at Chicago Midway. And considering that San Diego generally sees far less of the brake compromising conditions of rain, snow, and ice than Chicago does, I'd venture that the reduction in safety is marginal at worst.



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User currently offlineGoldenshield From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 6119 posts, RR: 14
Reply 9, posted (3 years 7 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 6192 times:

Quoting UTAH744 (Reply 3):
Quoting Brick (Reply 1):
The airport for Vail / Eagle County Airport (EGE) in Colorado is probably the most hazardous for the take-off phase of flight. Departure is to the west with a large hill right in close proximity of the runway. Departures require an immediate left turn to avoid terrain.

Amen.

I'd have to say that EGE is a cakewalk compared to ASE. Oh wait:

Quoting 4holer (Reply 2):
you are obviously asking about airports with mainline commercial service, right?

Then ASE doesn't count.



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User currently offlineBrick From United States of America, joined Aug 1999, 1589 posts, RR: 7
Reply 10, posted (3 years 7 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 6137 times:

Yeah, the reason I didn't mention ASE is because the largest aircraft the visits is the CRJ-700. EGE sees many 757-200's during the winter.


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User currently offline777fan From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 2522 posts, RR: 2
Reply 11, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 5957 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 8):
Even with that, it appears that there is ~6700 feet available for landing, which is slightly more than what's available at Chicago Midway. And considering that San Diego generally sees far less of the brake compromising conditions of rain, snow, and ice than Chicago does, I'd venture that the reduction in safety is marginal at worst.

And while we're at it, why don't we include MDW for the reasons you mentioned, as well as the arrival/departure patterns which place it in relatively close proximity to ORD.

Additionally, I'd add DCA to the list for many of the same reasons: relatively short runway (often serviced by 757s and Mad Dogs fighting to clear the fenceline at Gravelly Point!), tight traffic patterns (not to mention restricted airspace), and funky weather which is typically pretty hot and humid in the summertime.


777fan



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User currently offlinefalstaff From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 6166 posts, RR: 29
Reply 12, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day ago) and read 5929 times:
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Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 9):
Then ASE doesn't count
Quoting Brick (Reply 10):
Yeah, the reason I didn't mention ASE is because the largest aircraft the visits is the CRJ-700. EGE sees many 757-200's during the winter.




What is the largest thing ever flown into ASE? The biggest I recall was the BEA 146 back in the Aspen Airways days. I know Air Wisconsin flew them in there too after UA bought out Aspen. Aspen was a cool airline. I remember seeing their CV-580s lined up at DEN all the time when I was a kid.



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User currently offlineBrick From United States of America, joined Aug 1999, 1589 posts, RR: 7
Reply 13, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 5898 times:

Historically, ASE doesn't see commercial service operated by anything larger than a CRJ-700, BAe-146, or DHC-8-400.

The only limitations for aircraft flying into ASE is the wingspan cannot exceed 95ft (29m) because of a non-standard runway/taxiway separation and the max gross landing weight cannot exceed 100,000 lbs (45,000 kg). Even though the runway was extended in 2010, these restrictions were left in place.



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