2-6-2. PIREP SOLICITATION AND DISSEMINATION
Emphasis must be placed on the solicitation and dissemination of Urgent (UUA) and Routine (UA) PIREPs. Timely dissemination of PIREPs alerts pilots to weather conditions and provides information useful to forecasters in the development of aviation forecasts. PIREPs also provide information required by ATC in the provision of safe and efficient use of airspace. This includes reports of strong frontal activity, squall lines, thunderstorms, light to severe icing, wind shear and turbulence (including clear air turbulence) of moderate or greater intensity, braking action, volcanic eruptions and volcanic ash clouds, detection of sulfur gases in the cabin, and other conditions pertinent to flight safety. Null reports are critical to aviation weather forecasters and pilots and must be disseminated. Controllers must provide the information in sufficient detail to assist pilots in making decisions pertinent to flight safety.
NOTE: Routine PIREPs indicating a lack of forecasted weather conditions, for example, a lack of icing or turbulence, are also valuable to aviation weather forecasters and pilots. This is especially true when adverse conditions are expected or forecasted but do not develop or no longer exist.
- FAA Order JO 7110.65, Para 3-1-8, Low Level Wind Shear/Microburst Advisories.
- FAA Order JO 7110.65, Para 3-3-4, Braking Action.
- P/CG Term - Braking Action.
- FAA Order JO 7210.3, Para 6-3-1, Handling of SIGMETs, CWAs, and PIREPs.
- AIM, Para 7-5-9, Flight Operations in Volcanic Ash.
- FAA Order JO 7210.3, Para 10-3-1, SIGMET and PIREP Handling.
- FAA Order JO 7110.10, Chapter 8, Section 2, Pilot Weather Report (UA/UUA).
- Solicit PIREPs when requested, deemed necessary or any of the following conditions exists or is forecast for your area of jurisdiction:
- Ceilings at or below 5,000 feet. These PIREPs must include cloud bases, tops and cloud coverage when available. Additionally, when providing approach control services, ensure that at least one descent/climb–out PIREP and other related phenomena is obtained each hour.
- Visibility (surface or aloft) at or less than 5 miles.
- Thunderstorms and related phenomena.
- Turbulence of moderate degree or greater.
- Icing of light degree or greater.
- Wind shear.
- Braking action reports less than good.
- Volcanic eruptions, ash clouds, and/or detection of sulfur gases in the cabin: sulfur dioxide (SO2) or hydrogen sulfide (H2S).
- If only SO2 or H2S are detected with no reported volcanic ash clouds, ask the pilot if volcanic ash clouds are in the vicinity.
- 1. The smell of sulfur gases in the cockpit may indicate volcanic activity that has not yet been detected or reported and/or possible entry into an ash-bearing cloud. SO2 is identifiable as the sharp, acrid odor of a freshly struck match. H2S has the odor of rotten eggs.
- 2. Pilots may forward PIREPs regarding volcanic activity using the format described in the Volcanic Activity Reporting Form (VAR) as depicted in the AIM, Appendix 2.
Record with the PIREPs:
- FAA Order JO 7110.10, Para 8-2-5, Soliciting PIREPs
Obtain PIREPs directly from the pilot, or if the PIREP has been requested by another facility, you may instruct the pilot to deliver it directly to that facility.
- Aircraft position.
- Type aircraft.
- When the PIREP involves icing include:
- (a) Icing type and intensity.
- (b) Air temperature in which icing is occurring.
Disseminate PIREPs as follows:
- REQUEST/SAY FLIGHT CONDITIONS.
- Or if appropriate,
- REQUEST/SAY (specific conditions; i.e., ride, cloud, visibility, etc.) CONDITIONS.
- If necessary,
- OVER (fix),
- ALONG PRESENT ROUTE,
- BETWEEN (fix) AND (fix).
- Relay pertinent PIREP information to concerned aircraft in a timely manner.
NOTE: Use the word gain and/or loss when describing to pilots the effects of wind shear on airspeed.
- “Delta Seven Twenty-one, a Boeing Seven Thirty-seven, previously reported wind shear, loss of two five knots at four hundred feet.”
- “Alaska One, a Boeing Seven Thirty-seven, previously reported wind shear, gain of two-five knots between niner hundred and six hundred feet, followed by a loss of five zero knots between five hundred feet and the surface.”
- . Relay all operationally significant PIREPs to the facility weather coordinator and to all aircraft in sector(s) below and adjacent to the report.
- FAA Order JO 7210.3, Para 6-3-1, HANDLING OF SIGMETs, CWAs, AND PIREPs.
- . Relay all operationally significant PIREPs to:
- (a) The appropriate intrafacility positions.
- (b) The OS/CIC for long line dissemination via an FAA approved electronic system (for example, AIS-R, or similar systems); or,
- (c) Outside Alaska: The overlying ARTCC's Flight Data Unit for long-line dissemination.
- (d) Alaska Only: The FSS serving the area in which the report was obtained.
NOTE: The FSS in Alaska is responsible for long line dissemination.
- (e) Other concerned terminal or en route ATC facilities, including non-FAA facilities.