Consultation starts on changes to air traffic management

Consultation starts on changes to air traffic management

The National Air Traffic Control Service (Nats) is seeking comments from the public on changes to the way aircraft are managed in the skies above the southeast.

The consultation on plans for air space routes to and from Gatwick and London City airports runs until January 21.

Proposals for Heathrow and other London airports will then follow.

Nats says the changes would reduce the amount of stacking – where aircraft circle while they wait for a landing slot – put more routes over the sea and cut CO2 emissions.

Aircraft would climb higher on take-off and fly at a greater altitude for longer during landing.

It said the changes were needed to ensure safety levels and the new system would mean less noise for most people.

But residents under new flight paths could experience more air traffic, the BBC reported.

Juliet Kennedy, operations director at Nats’ Swanwick headquarters in Hampshire, said: “The whole of the southeast of England, pretty much, is already over flown by aircraft.

“What we’re trying to do is to work out the best possible route structure which suits everybody, works best for the people who are living underneath the areas where the aircraft fly but also for the airlines who are flying them and enables us to meet the demands that are placed on us by all the people who want to fly.”

She added: “The airspace above London is the most complex in the world and, as traffic levels increase, change is necessary to ensure safety and service levels.”


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