washingtonian
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Question About Ground Stops?

Fri Feb 18, 2011 10:35 pm

If there is a ground stop at JFK due to weather, are all aircraft destined to JFK held on the ground or just aircraft within a near vicinity? Does it really make sense to hold a plane at LAX that is 6 hours away from JFK just because there is a thunderstorm passing over JFK at the moment?
 
Mir
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sat Feb 19, 2011 12:46 am

Depends on what the range of the ground stop is. Some of them will be only for airports close to JFK, some will be for the whole country, depending on what is required.

For instance, currently both EWR and SFO have delay programs. EWR's is for all airports in the US and Canada, but SFO's is for 2000 miles only. So if you're farther than 2000 miles from SFO, you aren't affected. Ground stops work the same way. You might also see "1st tier" or "2nd tier". 1st tier means that any aircraft departing from within the ARTCC of the affected airport, as well as any bordering ARTCCs, are affected (for JFK, that would be New York, Boston, Cleveland and Washington). 2nd tier means all those, plus any that border them (so add Indianapolis, Chicago, Minneapolis, Atlanta and Jacksonville).

So to answer the question: no, not all ground stops stop all traffic to that airport.

-Mir
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aklrno
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sat Feb 19, 2011 4:53 am

This has an interesting effect on regional traffic connecting to long-haul at SFO. If I'm flying RNO-SFO-AKL and the visibility is limited at SFO they may cut SFO from 4 active runways to 2. This is very common. The incoming NZ flight has no problem. It was in the air hours before the delays set in. It leaves SFO more or less on time. The RNO flight is most likely to be delayed because it is still on the ground. I then miss my connection unless I allowed for half a day at SFO. That's why I always go via LAX and recommend everyone I know to do the same connecting regional to long-haul in California. LAX isn't pretty, but it works.
 
roseflyer
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sat Feb 19, 2011 5:05 am

Quoting aklrno (Reply 2):
The incoming NZ flight has no problem. It was in the air hours before the delays set in. It leaves SFO more or less on time. The RNO flight is most likely to be delayed because it is still on the ground. I then miss my connection unless I allowed for half a day at SFO. That's why I always go via LAX and recommend everyone I know to do the same connecting regional to long-haul in California. LAX isn't pretty, but it works.

Either do that or make sure you are on a 6am departure to SFO since groundstops and flow control pretty much never affect the first arrivals of the day.
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aklrno
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sat Feb 19, 2011 6:07 am

Quoting aklrno (Reply 2):
Either do that or make sure you are on a 6am departure to SFO since groundstops and flow control pretty much never affect the first arrivals of the day.

that's 12-14 hours at SFO? i'll just go to LAX if you don't mind.  
 
B747forever
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sat Feb 19, 2011 7:30 am

Also does the ground stop sometimes only affect a particular flight? Back in 2009 I flew LAX-EWR on CO and we departed the gate 1.5 hours late due to a weather program in EWR. Once we left the gate we also waited for 50 minutes on the taxiway before finally departing to EWR almost 2.5 hours delayed. The weired thing is that there was an AA flight to EWR departing at about the same time but that flight was not delayed at all!
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Mir
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sat Feb 19, 2011 7:46 am

Quoting B747forever (Reply 5):

Sometimes an airline will ask ATC to hold their flights for terminal congestion or something like that - ATC doesn't show favoritism to particular airlines, so they won't take the initiative unless the airlines ask.

Also, sometimes the routing a flight takes has an effect on whether it gets delayed or not.

-Mir
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Maverick623
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sat Feb 19, 2011 10:39 am

Quoting B747forever (Reply 5):
Also does the ground stop sometimes only affect a particular flight? Back in 2009 I flew LAX-EWR on CO and we departed the gate 1.5 hours late due to a weather program in EWR. Once we left the gate we also waited for 50 minutes on the taxiway before finally departing to EWR almost 2.5 hours delayed. The weired thing is that there was an AA flight to EWR departing at about the same time but that flight was not delayed at all!

Keep this in mind:

Quoting Mir (Reply 6):
Sometimes an airline will ask ATC to hold their flights for terminal congestion or something like that

And then also realize that the opposite happens: sometimes an airline will ask for "relief", usually because of crew rest issues where the flight will cancel if the crew times out. It doesn't always happen, but if a slot opens up and the plane is ready to go, they'll clear them in.
"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
 
Mir
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sat Feb 19, 2011 4:34 pm

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 7):
And then also realize that the opposite happens: sometimes an airline will ask for "relief"

Or a third option: the airline can swap EDCTs between their flights, so that one flight gets to go out on time and another flight is delayed further.

-Mir
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pilotpip
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sun Feb 20, 2011 1:07 am

Quoting B747forever (Reply 5):
The weired thing is that there was an AA flight to EWR departing at about the same time but that flight was not delayed at all!

Sometimes these delays are also imposed by the carrier. If the delay had occured at say, ORD the reverse would have been true. AA wasn't delayed because they have maybe 5 gates and 30 flights a day. CO at EWR on the other hand has dozens of gates and hundreds of flights. The results of wx trickle through their entire system and not delaying flights could result in thousands or reroutes and connection issues which would cost them dearly.
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dxing
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sun Feb 20, 2011 7:16 am

Quoting Mir (Reply 1):
So to answer the question: no, not all ground stops stop all traffic to that airport.

You are confusing ground stops and ground delay programs. If an airport is in a ground stop everything gets stopped. If you let the far away planes take off while everything close in is ground stopped the arrival rate will surely spike at some time in the future causing a revision in the program rate or an out and out ground stop due to airborne volume.

A ground delay program meters the flow and takes into account the arrival times of those coming transcon or closer. Usually, unless it is really bad weather, the farthest tiers are not subject to the program. There are also programs that can be put in place for certain centers if weather is bad in that sector and they can't handle their regular full volume.

Quoting Mir (Reply 6):
Also, sometimes the routing a flight takes has an effect on whether it gets delayed or not.

That use to be true but not anymore. The FAA has wised up to that trick. The only way it works now is if, as described above, a particular center is having a bad weather day and can't handle the traffic it normaly does.

Quoting Maverick623 (Reply 7):
And then also realize that the opposite happens: sometimes an airline will ask for "relief", usually because of crew rest issues where the flight will cancel if the crew times out. It doesn't always happen, but if a slot opens up and the plane is ready to go, they'll clear them in.

This is correct.

[Edited 2011-02-19 23:17:19]
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Mir
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Sun Feb 20, 2011 5:56 pm

Quoting dxing (Reply 10):
You are confusing ground stops and ground delay programs. If an airport is in a ground stop everything gets stopped. If you let the far away planes take off while everything close in is ground stopped the arrival rate will surely spike at some time in the future causing a revision in the program rate or an out and out ground stop due to airborne volume.

I have seen ground stops with limited scope. You are correct that there will be a future spike in arrival rate, but if there's a scheduled ebb in traffic flow that can absorb that, it won't be a problem. As I said before, there are a lot of factors that go into the decision.

Quoting dxing (Reply 10):
The only way it works now is if, as described above, a particular center is having a bad weather day and can't handle the traffic it normaly does.

That is what I was talking about. A flight not routed through that center might not have the same delays. I forget what the name for it is, but it's those airspace lines that show up on OIS from time to time (normally in the summer, so I can't provide examples)

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
dxing
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 1:43 am

Quoting Mir (Reply 11):
I have seen ground stops with limited scope.

Virtually always at the request of hub carrier and limited to their planes. A ground stop is issued when the arrival system is overwhelmed or conditions at the field have forced arrivals to be stopped. A ground delay program is almost already in place or is instituted prior to the ground stop being lifted.

Quoting Mir (Reply 11):
You are correct that there will be a future spike in arrival rate, but if there's a scheduled ebb in traffic flow that can absorb that, it won't be a problem.

Once a field is placed in a ground stop a ground delay program almost always follows if the field is of any size. This is to help meter any diversions that occured due to the ground stop to get back in the air and to the destination field.

Quoting Mir (Reply 11):
A flight not routed through that center might not have the same delays.

But a carrier cannot route around a particular center in order to avoid a ground delay unless a traffic management initative is put in place by the FAA. There are a few exceptions such as using the waters routes from/to Florida from/to the northeast to avoid a DC center delay but unless your aircraft has rafts and HF you can't take advantage of that. Try routing thru Cleveland center on the land side and your plan will be rejected.

Quoting Mir (Reply 11):
I forget what the name for it is, but it's those airspace lines that show up on OIS from time to time (normally in the summer, so I can't provide examples)

They are playbook reroutes and are still subject to edcts if a ground delay program is in effect for the destination field. If no ground delay program is in effect then there is almost an absolute certainty that an AFP (airspace flow program) will be in place which is like an airborne delay program.
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bond007
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 11:33 am

Quoting dxing (Reply 10):
If an airport is in a ground stop everything gets stopped.
Quoting dxing (Reply 12):
Quoting Mir (Reply 11):
I have seen ground stops with limited scope.

Virtually always at the request of hub carrier and limited to their planes.

As Mir, mentioned, actually all Ground Stops have scope ... that may be ALL, but more than often is not, and is restricted to surrounding centers, distance, or tiers (for example 1st & 2nd tier centers). If an East coast airport has a ground stop, which is generally for a short period of time, it commonly only affects surrrounding centers, and even if it includes 1st and 2nd tier centers, that still leaves all the West coast centers out of scope ... if the FAA anticipate the Ground Stop only lasting a hour or so, it's not going to be affected by flights departing that have 4 or 5 hr flight times (and they are probably under some other delay program anyway, so the 'spike' issue is already allowed for).

Ground Stops by carrier are the least common types of Ground Stops, but as you say, do occur from time to time.

Bond
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bond007
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 12:51 pm

I guess an example would have been a good idea  

Note the DEP FACILITIES INCLUDED, which is only 1st tier (those centers bordering ZAU center). Flights originating from other centers are far enough away as to not be arriving before the Ground Stop was planned to be cancelled ... now, of course, it could be extended ... but that's another story, and presumably would mean holding and/or diversions for flights that did make the decision to depart.


CTL ELEMENT: ORD
ELEMENT TYPE: APT
ADL TIME: 2020Z
GROUND STOP PERIOD: 20/2015Z - 20/2130Z
CUMULATIVE PROGRAM PERIOD: 20/1800Z - 21/0359Z
DEP FACILITIES INCLUDED: (1stTier) ZKC ZAU ZMP ZID ZOB
PREVIOUS TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 589 / 88 / 21
NEW TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 1703 / 125 / 61
PROBABILITY OF EXTENSION: MEDIUM
IMPACTING CONDITION: WEATHER / LOW CEILINGS
COMMENTS: EXPECT CONFERENCE FOR REVISION TO GDP. EXPECT HOLDING
THROUGH 2130Z.

[Edited 2011-02-21 04:55:09]
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dxing
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 2:24 pm

Quoting bond007 (Reply 14):
IMPACTING CONDITION: WEATHER / LOW CEILINGS
COMMENTS: EXPECT CONFERENCE FOR REVISION TO GDP. EXPECT HOLDING
THROUGH 2130Z.

This is not a ground stop due to ORD being closed, it is due to wx and low ceilings meaning the tower cannot land what they predicted they could hence the revision to the program and holding expected. If ORD were actually closed, that is not accepting any traffic, the ground stop would be all. The ground stop here is to allow time for a revision to the program, which is shown in the example to be worked out via a conference call with the affected parties. This is actually a poor example as the GS does not show the GDP behind it and what scope that was. More than likely the 2nd and 3rd tier centers were never included.

I understand what you are driving at but a true ground stop, one because the field is being directly impacted almost always stops everyone in their tracks. To let the transcons leave would only create havoc at some future time. That was the OP's question.

Quoting washingtonian (Thread starter):
If there is a ground stop at JFK due to weather, are all aircraft destined to JFK held on the ground or just aircraft within a near vicinity? Does it really make sense to hold a plane at LAX that is 6 hours away from JFK just because there is a thunderstorm passing over JFK at the moment?


[Edited 2011-02-21 06:59:56]
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bond007
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 2:58 pm

Quoting dxing (Reply 15):
This is not a ground stop due to ORD being closed, it is due to wx and low ceilings

Which is what most of the Ground Stops are  

Jimbo
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dxing
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 3:05 pm

I edited my previous post to be more clear at what I was responding too and in the meantime you posted.

Quoting bond007 (Reply 16):
Which is what most of the Ground Stops are

Disagree. While weather certainly plays into GS's I have seen far more GS's due to overly rosey predictions from tracon as to how many they can land in an hour leading to airborne holding and the centers upstream getting upset because the traffic is backing up into their sectors.
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bond007
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 3:36 pm

Quoting dxing (Reply 15):
To let the transcons leave would only create havoc at some future time. That was the OP's question.

Quoting washingtonian (Thread starter):
If there is a ground stop at JFK due to weather, are all aircraft destined to JFK held on the ground or just aircraft within a near vicinity? Does it really make sense to hold a plane at LAX that is 6 hours away from JFK just because there is a thunderstorm passing over JFK at the moment?

So ... the answer is generally no. The Ground Stop would be exactly like my example for ORD yesterday, where most likely only 1st (and maybe 2nd) tier centers are affected. Flights from the West Coast would not be affected unless conditions were especially severe, and the FAA thought the Ground Stop would be extended fior several hours.

Jimbo
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dxing
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 3:48 pm

Quoting bond007 (Reply 18):

So ... the answer is generally no. The Ground Stop would be exactly like my example for ORD yesterday, where most likely only 1st (and maybe 2nd) tier centers are affected. Flights from the West Coast would not be affected unless conditions were especially severe, and the FAA thought the Ground Stop would be extended fior several hours.

Sorry, but we'll have to agree to disagree. The impacting weather around ORD in the example is not stopping arrivals, only slowing them down, and was probably exacerbated by an overly rosey expectation of what they could actually land in a given hour. The OP asked about weather, such as a TS over the field, stopping arrivals. Unless I am missing something arrivals were not stopped at ORD at any time. If arrivals are cut off completely, as due to a TS or snow piling up so fast on the runways that they cannot be kept cleared, all traffic to the airport will be halted. That has happened a couple of times this past winter and almost always happens several times during the summer.
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Goldenshield
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 7:35 pm

Quoting dxing (Reply 19):
Unless I am missing something arrivals were not stopped at ORD at any time.

ORD will generally keep 2-4 runways open at a time during heavy snowfall, randomly closing a pair at a time to plow. They do a rather excellent job there, all things considered.

Quoting dxing (Reply 19):
The impacting weather around ORD in the example is not stopping arrivals, only slowing them down,

5 hour flow, anyone?
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bond007
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Mon Feb 21, 2011 9:56 pm

Whether or not the arrivals are stopped completely or not, is irrelevant .... a ground stop is a ground stop, and to answer the OP question again, no, ALL departures are not necessarily stopped ... there is a scope, which yes, could be ALL, but does not need to be.


Jimbo
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washingtonian
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Tue Feb 22, 2011 2:35 pm

Thanks for all the replies everyone. I ask this because I downloaded an app called FAAwait on my iPhone. Under the legend it has:
Ground stops--flights may not depart to the airport listed until the ground stop expires
Ground delays--flights departing to the airport listed are subject to a delay at their oirigin (this delay may vary by origin).

I guess this fits in with what you all described above, though its not clear if the Ground stop they refer to refers to all airports in the country.
 
Mir
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Tue Feb 22, 2011 9:44 pm

Quoting bond007 (Reply 21):
there is a scope, which yes, could be ALL, but does not need to be.


An example from today:

CTL ELEMENT: TEB
ELEMENT TYPE: APT
ADL TIME: 2106Z
GROUND STOP PERIOD: 22/2015Z - 22/2230Z
DEP FACILITIES INCLUDED: (Manual) ZTL ZAU ZMP ZID ZMA ZJX ZBW ZOB
ZDC
ZNY CYHZ CYOW CYUL CYYZ CYTZ CYQB
PREVIOUS TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 814 / 68 / 18
NEW TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 3150 / 128 / 68
PROBABILITY OF EXTENSION: MEDIUM
IMPACTING CONDITION: VOLUME / COMPACTED DEMAND
COMMENTS:


So if your flight to TEB was departing from DEN/HOU/SFO/LAX/etc., the ground stop would not apply to you.

-Mir
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dxing
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Wed Feb 23, 2011 10:12 pm

Quoting Mir (Reply 23):
An example from today:

Still does not address a weather issue as the OP asked about. Volume and compacted demand is not necessarily related to weather.

Meanwhile.....

Quoting bond007 (Reply 13):
Ground Stops by carrier are the least common types of Ground Stops, but as you say, do occur from time to time.

Also from today....

ATCSCC ADVZY 027 DCC/ASQ 02/23/11 GROUND STOP
DESTINATION AIRPORT: ALL
FACILITIES INCLUDED: ALL
EXPECT UPDATE: 2230Z
REASON: AIRLINE REQUEST/
REMARKS: AIRLINE REQUEST ALL FLIGHTS BE GROUND STOPPED DUE
TO AN EXPECT UPDATE AT 2230Z.
232141-232359
11/02/23 21:41


And that is an "all" as in everywhere. You don't see that all the time.

Last Friday when we had all that wind in New York, the airports were still accepting arrivals but at a greatly reduced rate, there was was a GDP already in place and yet.....

ATCSCC Advisory
ATCSCC ADVZY 056 EWR/ZNY 02/18/2011 CDM GROUND STOP
MESSAGE:
CTL ELEMENT: EWR
ELEMENT TYPE: APT
ADL TIME: 1904Z
GROUND STOP PERIOD: 18/1854Z - 18/2000Z
CUMULATIVE PROGRAM PERIOD: 18/1829Z - 18/2359Z
DEP FACILITIES INCLUDED: (Manual) ZFW ZKC ZME ZTL ZAU ZMP ZID ZMA
ZHU
ZJX ZBW ZOB ZDC ZNY CYHZ CYOW CYUL CYYZ CYTZ CYQB
PREVIOUS TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 541 / 73 / 28
NEW TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 954 / 84 / 50
PROBABILITY OF EXTENSION: MEDIUM
IMPACTING CONDITION: WEATHER / WIND
COMMENTS:



EFFECTIVE TIME:
181908 - 182100
SIGNATURE:
11/02/18 19:08


Only the west coast ZLA, ZOA. ZSE, ZAB, ZDV, and ZLC were excluded. Had the airport stopped accepting arrivals altogether they too would have been included. As long as the airport is still accepting arrivals it would be difficult to imagine a ground stop affecting all airports. If the airport stops accepting arrivals and declares itself closed without an open time, you can't even legally dispatch to that airport.

[Edited 2011-02-23 14:34:24]

[Edited 2011-02-23 14:38:20]

[Edited 2011-02-23 14:39:09]

[Edited 2011-02-23 14:40:30]
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Mir
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Thu Feb 24, 2011 2:52 am

Quoting dxing (Reply 24):
Still does not address a weather issue as the OP asked about. Volume and compacted demand is not necessarily related to weather.

It wasn't a weather issue - it was clear and a million that day. But it's still a ground stop that wasn't effective everywhere. Those can be for weather, volume, operational issues, etc.

-Mir
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dxing
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Thu Feb 24, 2011 1:44 pm

Quoting Mir (Reply 25):
It wasn't a weather issue - it was clear and a million that day. But it's still a ground stop that wasn't effective everywhere. Those can be for weather, volume, operational issues, etc.

The OP asked specifically about weather. If the airport is not taking arrivals and is effectively closed, no departures will be allowed to that airport until it is again accepting arrivals. If the condition is not forcing closure of the airport then the ground stop can be modified. But again, if the airport is closed due to a TS over the field, as the OP asked about, no departures will be allowed nor would any dispatcher allow his flight to depart unless there was a solid time at which the airport would be accepting arrivals and his or her flight would arrive after that time.
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bond007
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Fri Feb 25, 2011 7:59 pm



Quoting dxing (Reply 26):
The OP asked specifically about weather. If the airport is not taking arrivals and is effectively closed, no departures will be allowed to that airport until it is again accepting arrivals. If the condition is not forcing closure of the airport then the ground stop can be modified. But again, if the airport is closed due to a TS over the field, as the OP asked about, no departures will be allowed nor would any dispatcher allow his flight to depart unless there was a solid time at which the airport would be accepting arrivals and his or her flight would arrive after that time.

Well, here is the exact answer to the OP question from today for JFK and thunderstorms, and as discussed,does not affect ALL airports.In fact for the 4 Ground Stops active now for thunderstorms, none of them affect ALL departures:

MESSAGE: CTL ELEMENT: JFK
ELEMENT TYPE: APT
ADL TIME: 1823Z
GROUND STOP PERIOD: 25/1823Z - 25/2000Z
CUMULATIVE PROGRAM PERIOD: 25/1730Z - 26/0359Z
DEP FACILITIES INCLUDED: (2ndTier+CZY_AP) ZTL ZAU ZMP ZID ZJX ZBW
ZOB
ZDC ZNY CYHZ CYOW CYUL CYYZ CYTZ CYQB
PREVIOUS TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 1004 / 159 / 100
NEW TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 1328 / 182 / 133
PROBABILITY OF EXTENSION: MEDIUM
IMPACTING CONDITION: WEATHER / THUNDERSTORMS
COMMENTS: HOLDING OF UP TO 30 MINUTES CAN BE EXPECTED UNTIL
CONDITONS
IMPROVES.

Here is another, here only affecting a few centers:

MESSAGE: CTL ELEMENT: LGA
ELEMENT TYPE: APT
ADL TIME: 1905Z
GROUND STOP PERIOD: 25/1905Z - 25/2030Z
CUMULATIVE PROGRAM PERIOD: 25/1400Z - 26/0259Z
DEP FACILITIES INCLUDED: (Manual) ZTL ZJX ZDC
PREVIOUS TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 636 / 122 / 35
NEW TOTAL, MAXIMUM, AVERAGE DELAYS: 1384 / 161 / 77
PROBABILITY OF EXTENSION: MEDIUM
IMPACTING CONDITION: WEATHER / THUNDERSTORMS




Jimbo

[Edited 2011-02-25 12:03:14]
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bond007
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RE: Question About Ground Stops?

Fri Feb 25, 2011 9:19 pm

Quoting dxing (Reply 26):
as the OP asked about, no departures will be allowed nor would any dispatcher allow his flight to depart unless there was a solid time at which the airport would be accepting arrivals and his or her flight would arrive after that time.

But that was the point of the question. If it's obvious from the radar that the storm will have passed in the next hour or so, then the scope would never include flights departing 6hrs away, unless they expected continuing delays for some reason. All of the ground stops I saw today for thunderstorms had limited scope for that reason. I guess it should be obvious that if there is no time they expect to accept arrivals again, the ground stop would affect ALL .... but that is not common. Thunderstorms are, by their nature, 'usually' either short-lived, fast moving, or scattered enough as not to close an airport for an extended time.

Quoting washingtonian (Thread starter):
Does it really make sense to hold a plane at LAX that is 6 hours away from JFK just because there is a thunderstorm passing over JFK at the moment?

No, see my examples above from JFK today. A perfect example to answer your question.

Jimbo
I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!

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