ILS Critical Area

n9088d

New Member
Controllers...

When is a pilot expected to hold short of the ILS critical area boundary?? Some pilots believe they need to hold short of the ILS critical line anytime the ATIS says there are instrument approaches in use. Is this true? Or is the line there just to let pilots know when they've cleared the ILS critical area after exiting a runway (after landing)?

Thanks.
 

400A

New Member
Any time the weather is below 800' ceiling or less than 2 miles vis, OR whenver requested by ATC.
 

ATC RET 2003

No More Vectors
Controllers...

When is a pilot expected to hold short of the ILS critical area boundary?? Some pilots believe they need to hold short of the ILS critical line anytime the ATIS says there are instrument approaches in use. Is this true?
Generally speaking, only when you are told to hold short of it.

Here's a piece from the book that tells the controllers when to tell you:

3-7-5. PRECISION APPROACH CRITICAL
AREA

a. ILS critical area dimensions are described in
FAAO 6750.16, Siting Criteria for Instrument
Landing Systems. Aircraft and vehicle access to the
ILS/MLS critical area must be controlled to ensure
the integrity of ILS/MLS course signals whenever
conditions are less than reported ceiling 800 feet or
visibility less than 2 miles. Do not authorize
vehicles/aircraft to operate in or over the critical area,
except as specified in subpara a1, whenever an
arriving aircraft is inside the ILS outer marker (OM)
or the fix used in lieu of the OM unless the arriving
aircraft has reported the runway in sight or is circling
to land on another runway.

PHRASEOLOGY-
HOLD SHORT OF (runway) ILS/MLS CRITICAL AREA.

1. LOCALIZER CRITICAL AREA
(a) Do not authorize vehicle or aircraft
operations in or over the area when an arriving
aircraft is inside the ILS OM or the fix used in lieu of
the OM when conditions are less than reported ceiling
800 feet or visibility less than 2 miles, except:
(1) A preceding arriving aircraft on the
same or another runway that passes over or through
the area while landing or exiting the runway.
(2) A preceding departing aircraft or
missed approach on the same or another runway that
passes through or over the area.
(b) In addition to subpara a1(a), do not
authorize vehicles or aircraft operations in or over the
area when an arriving aircraft is inside the middle
marker when conditions are less than reported ceiling
200 feet or RVR 2,000 feet.


As always, if there is any doubt... ask.
 

n9088d

New Member
Thanks for your replies, guys. This is one of those topics that just seems so ambiguous. I've been flying for almost 9 years, and I've never once in my life been told by ground or tower to "hold short of the ILS critical area." I've never even heard that on another frequency either. Plus I've seen many aircraft blow right on through the ILS critical line on bad weather days and the tower has said nothing to them. If this is a rule pilots are expected to know (the rule of holding short of the ILS critical line when less than 800 and 2) then there needs to be a change made to the primary and instrument training curriculums. Pilots don't know this (at least most don't).
 

whysoserial

New Member
As a pilot, you are supposed to know what it is, what it looks like, and what it's called.

Remember, it's when the weather is LESS than 800 OR 2 miles. Do you fly when it's often like that? Maybe nobody is on the approach and/or within the parameters of when it needs to be protected.

If you don't get told to hold at it then don't. How are you to know who's on the approach?

It seems too a lot of the ILS hold bars are located where not many aircraft taxi. That's how it is at my airport...we don't need to protect it from 99% aircraft that taxi out for departure.
 

n9088d

New Member
As a pilot, you are supposed to know what it is, what it looks like, and what it's called.

Remember, it's when the weather is LESS than 800 OR 2 miles. Do you fly when it's often like that? Maybe nobody is on the approach and/or within the parameters of when it needs to be protected.

If you don't get told to hold at it then don't. How are you to know who's on the approach?

It seems too a lot of the ILS hold bars are located where not many aircraft taxi. That's how it is at my airport...we don't need to protect it from 99% aircraft that taxi out for departure.

Right. Of course everyone is familiar (or at least should be) with what it is/looks like, etc. My point was, not everyone knows when to hold short there.

I live in the midwest, so I get a lot of opportunities to fly in instrument conditions. And at my airport, 100% of aircraft must taxi beyond the ILS hold line to get to the runway (full length), or even the run-up area. It's right in the middle of the taxiway and is not located near an intersection. I would think in almost 9 years of flying and listening to ATC I would've heard "hold short of the ILS critical area" at least once. Maybe I have and I just don't remember. :rolleyes:
 

whysoserial

New Member
Right. Of course everyone is familiar (or at least should be) with what it is/looks like, etc. My point was, not everyone knows when to hold short there.

I live in the midwest, so I get a lot of opportunities to fly in instrument conditions. And at my airport, 100% of aircraft must taxi beyond the ILS hold line to get to the runway (full length), or even the run-up area. It's right in the middle of the taxiway and is not located near an intersection. I would think in almost 9 years of flying and listening to ATC I would've heard "hold short of the ILS critical area" at least once. Maybe I have and I just don't remember. :rolleyes:
Ya, I guess what I was trying to say is that you don't need to know when to hold short of it. You either get told to hold short of it or you don't :)
 

braunpilot

What day is it?
I always enjoy when I ask the controller if I need to hold short and they say "negative" but then come back right as I am about to pass the ILS Critical Area Hold Short signs and they say "Hold Short ILS Critical Area". I slam on the breaks and usually turn around because I passed it. But I have only been asked to do that twice maybe three times. And that includes flying into MEM and a bunch of others. Most airports that I have seen have just changed ALL hold short lines to comply with it so that ATC never has to distinguish between. At least at ASG they did. But then again it also doesn't have any names for any of the taxiways. It's taxi to runway 18 via west parrell taxiway. Roger. It's must easier that way so that the airport doesn't have the FAA looking over their sholder as much. I know that where the ILS antenna is has a lot to do with the size and place of the ILS critical area. But that is just my little view of the ILS world.
 

DE727UPS

Well-Known Member
I would say, anytime it's less than 800 and 2, you should hold short. If ATC doesn't tell you to hold short, as per the 7110.65 quoted above, I'd say they screwed up. The "system" relies on pilots and controllers "looking out for each other". Let's catch each others mistakes whenever possible, for the sake of safety.

I was once on the FAA liasion committee of my union. We had a crew taxi past the ILS hold short at MHT when the weather was less than 800 and 2. The tower guys reported the crew and it was my job to get into the 7110.65 and see if ATC shared responsibility. The above quote shows ATC is supposed to tell you to hold short. I believe the AIM directs pilots to hold short, as well. So it's a shared responsibility.

I never heard another word from the union, but I'm assuming our pilots were not sanctioned, in the end.
 

n9088d

New Member
I would say, anytime it's less than 800 and 2, you should hold short. If ATC doesn't tell you to hold short, as per the 7110.65 quoted above, I'd say they screwed up. The "system" relies on pilots and controllers "looking out for each other". Let's catch each others mistakes whenever possible, for the sake of safety.

I was once on the FAA liasion committee of my union. We had a crew taxi past the ILS hold short at MHT when the weather was less than 800 and 2. The tower guys reported the crew and it was my job to get into the 7110.65 and see if ATC shared responsibility. The above quote shows ATC is supposed to tell you to hold short. I believe the AIM directs pilots to hold short, as well. So it's a shared responsibility.

I never heard another word from the union, but I'm assuming our pilots were not sanctioned, in the end.
That's an interesting story. Good info. It's always a bit unsettling to me when expectations are ambiguous. If intelligent people like you and me (and other pilots) can't figure out exactly what's expected regarding a certain procedure (like the ILS hold line), then obviously it needs clarification. The FAA should realize that this isn't something that should be debate-able. There should just be a right answer and that's it. I've glanced through the AIM to see if I could find anything about this topic, but I didn't find anything. Can anyone else cite the exact paragraph where they found the answer??

Guess I'll start holding short of the ILS line when it's less than 800 and/or 2. I'll still have to wonder if that's truly the right thing to do or not though. :eek:
 

ATC RET 2003

No More Vectors
There should just be a right answer and that's it. I've glanced through the AIM to see if I could find anything about this topic, but I didn't find anything. Can anyone else cite the exact paragraph where they found the answer??
4-3-18 a. 8.

If a pilot is expected to hold short of a runway
approach (“APPCH”) area or ILS holding position
(see FIG 2−3−15, Taxiways Located in Runway
Approach Area), ATC will issue instructions.
 

n9088d

New Member
4-3-18 a. 8.

If a pilot is expected to hold short of a runway
approach (“APPCH”) area or ILS holding position
(see FIG 2−3−15, Taxiways Located in Runway
Approach Area), ATC will issue instructions.
You're my hero! THANK you! Now that's a good, solid answer. :) Do you accept tips?
 

ATC RET 2003

No More Vectors
You're my hero! THANK you! Now that's a good, solid answer. :) Do you accept tips?
You are welcome...

All I did, though, was look up something in "the book" and the AIM, which is easy enough to do and come up with, as you put it, "...a right answer and that's it."

However, I much prefer Don's stance from post #9 where he said,

The "system" relies on pilots and controllers "looking out for each other". Let's catch each others mistakes whenever possible, for the sake of safety.
I once worked at a place with an ILS critical area. Sometimes the weather went below 800 or 2. I am grateful for the pilots to whom I forgot to give the hold restriction that didn't just go with the right answer and that's it.
 
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