DanVS From Brazil, joined Jul 2009, 264 posts, RR: 0 Posted (2 years 11 months 1 week 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 4200 times:
I was taking a look at the high altitude enroute charts of China, and I was surprised to see that the country has very few airways, even in congested areas such as Beijing and Shanghai. Considering the number of flights over the country, I wonder how so many flights can be squeezed in so few airways. For example, only one airway connects Beijing and Shanghai and only one for Japan-Beijing area.
Japan alone has a lot more airways than the entire China (needless to say that Japan's size is a fraction of China's).
China's skies are hardly crowded, but its restricted routes are. Experts and pilots say airspace allocated for commercial use is only around 20 percent. "The airspace is too small. It's like an eight-lane highway with just two lanes open," said Jeff Zhang, a pilot at one of the top three Chinese carries.
In addition, the lack of up-to-date equipment at airports,such as those used to navigate pilots in bad weather, relatively stricter safety standards and the scarcity of trained air controllers are also adding to flight delays, they say.
With the military unlikely to make more space available for commercial use, it is up to the airlines and aviation authorities to make the best use of the resources they have, for example, by using bigger planes or upgrading equipment.
"As a pilot, I want to fly as soon as possible too because I don't get paid when I'm on the ground. The airlines don't like delays either since they want to use their aircraft as many times as possible," said Zhang. "No one likes delays. But this is all because of the narrow air space."
They file the published routes. I know Jeppesen have been asked to do some flight plans for Chinese carriers, and they did not have the routes the carriers asked them to use. It is not uncommon for me to see aircraft on unusual tracks not on my charts, from what I can see these are domestic routes.
This is not the only country to do this, try and get the charts for a lot of Russian or Indian ( e.g. Port Blair), they are only made available to domestic carriers.
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