Landing at Night at an Airport without Lights

Alchemy

Partner, Ally, Friend
Just curious, does anyone know if legally, by the FAR's if you can land at night at an airport which does not have runway lights? I asked my CFI about this earlier today, and could not get a definite answer from any of the other CFI's at my flight school either.

Of course it wouldn't be smart and I'd never want to do it, but it'd be nice to know.
 

E_Dawg

Moderator
I read an NTSB report of some guy who (crash) landed next to the runway at an airport where the runway lights were OTS. He didn't check NOTAMs and when he got there the lights didn't turn on!


He must not have been very 'bright'.



That'll 'light up' your night.



That's sure to 'brighten' his weekend.



I wonder if the FAA will 'enlighten' him.



OK I'm done
 

JDMcFly

New Member
A lot of strips in the carribean don't have much for landing lights..

I was flying in flightsimulator one evening, at dark around the area and flew into an airport that's runway only had those two "blinking" lights. Talk about loss of orientation!

Not only could I barely even see the strip, the blinking lights made it worse, because it is all I could really see of the runway, it was very hard to align my self with the runway.

Well.. Okay, isn't much of a story, I think I made it onto the strip, barely.. Luckily it WAS only in flightsimulator.

I hate those dang blinking lights.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
I was flying in flightsimulator one evening, at dark around the area and flew into an airport that's runway only had those two "blinking" lights. Talk about loss of orientation!

.I hate those dang blinking lights.

[/ QUOTE ]

There's a reason for the Runway End Identifier Lights, or REILs; that's to let the pilot be able to pick out the runway environment from surrounding lights especially when the runway edge lights are low or medium intensity.

When you land in PHX or the surrounding airports at night, you'll learn to love those "blinking lights"
 

JDMcFly

New Member
I suppose I will, I just didn't expect them, or really know how to fly into an unlighted strip at dark (with just those two lights).

I don't mind the 'blinkers' as long as there are edge lights. I don't recall this one having any, it was awhile ago though.
 

bumflip

New Member
I used to fly under blackout conditions in the OH-58 under NVG's....Talk about a lack of depth perception! You also had to be able to rip off the NOD's and still land! Main idea is off-center viewing, and IF you have only two blinking lights on the runway, don't even look at them, fixation/fascination is another killer!
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
I used to fly under blackout conditions in the OH-58 under NVG's....Talk about a lack of depth perception! You also had to be able to rip off the NOD's and still land! Main idea is off-center viewing, and IF you have only two blinking lights on the runway, don't even look at them, fixation/fascination is another killer!

[/ QUOTE ]

We regularly do NVG ops too, albeit not down in the trees like the helos do! Was operating with helos once. When working out a deconfliction plan between them and us, I queried the AMC in the OH-58 if he wanted 500' and below. You would've thought I just committed blasphemy asking that question! In a somewhat surprised voice, he informed that the helos would like 100' AGL and below, since that's all they need, but expect them to be lower.

You ever do JAAT? I don't mean the current CAS with helos JAAT, but the old JAAT with the JAAT fires coordination clock and such?
 

H46Bubba

Well-Known Member
Could you imagine GA flying around with NVG's? Man, people would be crashing left and right! It could be plausable though with proper training. I've always wanted to try it.
 

Cheechako

Well-Known Member
In Alaska where I flew we didn't have lights on the runway. Every now and then someone would come in after dark. We'd all run out there on snow-mobiles and four-wheelers and line the runway. One guy even had a battery powered strobe light he'd put on the end of the runway. Worked pretty good!
 

DeltaASA16

Well-Known Member
WOW! I can't believe that they'd do that in ALASKA
...well when you gotta do something, you gotta do it!



DeltaASA16
 

onthebeach

New Member
Neatest trick I ever saw in this regard was on a guy's privately owned strip on the peninsula east of Galveston bay. The strip was about 2000' x 25' and sod, if I remember right. Anyway, the guy had gone to home depot or somewhere and bought a bunch of those red reflector things on aluminum posts...the kind people stick in the ground by the corners of their driveways. He stuck them every 50' or so down both sides of the runway. Then when he came in at night he just lined up on where the strip was by reference to the nearby highway, turned on his landing light, and bingo! the reflectors gave him "runway edge lighting." Probably would have s*cked if his landing light burned out.
 

ready2fly

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Probably would have s*cked if his landing light burned out.

[/ QUOTE ]
I'm pretty sure you're not going to get booted for typing the word "SUCK".
 
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