>>>I saw a post awhile back where someone said that if a flight was less than a certain distance, than it was restricted to FL280 and below. Can someone help me out with this? What is the distance, I have forgotten. Thanks.
There is no hard-and-fast regulation that mandates this, and it's largely a function of the efficiency of the aircraft used, the actual load (weight) plus what the ATC system can handle. To some extent, getting up to FL410 on a short flight is something like getting on the freeway and going to the far left lane, only to immediately start heading to the rightmost lane to make the next exit 3/4 mile down the road. You can certainly do this if there's no traffic, but if there is any, you'll probably never get more than a lane or two away from the rightmost.
Someone mentioned a SWA OAK
getting FL410, and while it happens, it's not always a certainty. Our flight planning computer looks for optimum altitudes, and had the flight been heavy, or a -300/-500, it'd have been lower, and again, ATC traffic can be a factor.
Sometimes, ATC "cap" flights (that could go higher) to lower altitudes. LAS
(and vice versa) are good examples, as ATC will almost always cap you at FL280 or FL270 so as to stay underneath all the traffic in/out ofthe Bay-area airports (SFO
). Ditto for PHX
flights, so they can keep you underneath the transcon streams into LAS
, and the other SOCAl airports.
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