I know that with Hurricane Irene’s approach to the East Coast of the United States, virtually everyone has an interest. How can we not? There are around 80 million people in it’s path, not to mention the nation’s capital and the world’s financial capital.
The real worry is after the hurricane. Airports are the first point of relief from outside the devastation. For my longtime readers, this isn’t your first rodeo. Others can take a walk down memory lane.
I could spend all day listing the FAA facilities at risk -- DCA, PHL, the Command Center, the Tech Center, JFK, LGA and dozens of other places. But the two places that have to be on the FAA’s priority list are N90 and ZNY -- New York TRACON and New York Center.
One look at a map explains the problem. “A” is the TRACON and B is the Center.
(From Google Maps)
As you can see from the map scale, both are only about 10 miles inland. And if the FAA should lose both of them...some other facility has to take over the airspace. Good luck with that.
Regardless, there will be air traffic controllers working the airspace. While others are putting their lives back together, controllers will be putting their lives and their families on hold. They’ll be earning their pay.
And they’ll “make it work”. Somehow. Someway. They will get the emergency relief into the area’s airports. Somehow. Someway. They always do.
August 26, 2011