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TOPIC: New notam website for Canadian pilots

New notam website for Canadian pilots 1 year 10 months ago #20512

  • Adrian B
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Hello everyone!

I was recommended by Aviation.Ca to come here to tell you about a website that I have been working on for some time. It's called Zulu for Pilots and it's an interactive Google map that displays all the notams issued by NavCanada. You can find the website at www.zuluforpilots.com. The About Section has also a brief description on how the site works.

Personally, I find the notam aspect of flight planning to be an absolute chore. I also feel like when it comes to the general aviation in Canada, our tools are ancient and out dated compared to our American friends.

The website is very basic but I’m already in the works on incorporating new features based on initial feedback. Of course, I would like it if this community could take a look at the website and provide any feedback. It will definitely be appreciated.

Hope all the Canadian pilots enjoy the site! Fly safe!

Edit: It's free!
Last Edit: 1 year 10 months ago by Adrian B.
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New notam website for Canadian pilots 1 year 10 months ago #20513

  • Michael Oxner
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I had a brief look, and I can say that I like what I see. I have an important question.

I'm an ATC in Moncton ACC, and all too often we see pilots filing flight plans through charted restricted airspaces (the most common in our region is CYR724, although we see others as well). These are areas that are published on many charts, and it still happens. My personal, largely-unsubstantiated belief is incomplete flight planning. In this day and age of "GPS will get me there", many pilots get no indication of such areas as the equipment navigates on exactly the line that was asked for. Those are the published areas.

There are many areas that don't get published. Things like concerts and fireworks areas, forest fire areas, temporary military missions, etc crop up on short notice. These are often away from airports, and as such are not associated with any particular airport NOTAM file (ICAO airport code).

Each NOTAM summary offers a general section from "headquarters" which is a national scope, as well as a regional scope by FIR. How does your website handle these? Rule changes, active airspace, obstacles not associated with airports, and so forth have to be accounted for somehow, otherwise this site could help lead a pilot astray, thinking he received all of the pertinent NOTAMs. This is a serious concern to me as pilots awash in pre-flight duties and stresses with passengers/bosses look to find the easiest/quickest methods of doing things. I'd hate to see someone miss something important for the enroute portion of their flight plan because it wasn't associated with an airport.

So far, I like the interface. Did I miss something that would help me find such a NOTAM between airfields?
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New notam website for Canadian pilots 1 year 10 months ago #20514

  • Adrian B
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Hi Michael,

Glad you were able to take some time to not only have a look at the website but also come back to me with your feedback.
There are many areas that don't get published. Things like concerts and fireworks areas, forest fire areas, temporary military missions, etc crop up on short notice. These are often away from airports, and as such are not associated with any particular airport NOTAM file (ICAO airport code).

Funny enough, part of my notam frustrations started here. Whenever restricted/advisory airspace showed up under the FIR, it was a painstaking process to determine if my flight would cross this route. This is the direction where I will be taking Zulu for Pilots. I'm in the middle of incorporating FIR & National notams. Afterwards, I want to see "shaded regions" on the map that depict both published and "last-minute" restricted/advisory airspaces. Finally, I would like to see a pilot plot his route on the map and see what notams are relevant to his or her flight.

So to answer your questions in your final paragraphs, the website's scope is limited to aerodrome notams only. However, FIR & national notams are #1 on my "to do" list.

Thank you again for taking the time for writing.

P.S. Maybe one day we'll cross paths on the radio - I've been wanting to fly out to the East coast for some time.

Adrian
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New notam website for Canadian pilots 1 year 10 months ago #20515

  • Michael Oxner
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I'm glad to see that you're aware of this and working on it. I think your site has great potential if you can find a way to capture this sort of thing.

And definitely reach out this way sometime. From the St. Lawrence Seaway to the Cape Breton Highlands, we have plenty of scenery to see from the air, and lots of hospitality on the ground. Summer and fall are best, especially if you're VFR.
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