Flight Plan Addressing Requirements

Flight Plans subject to ATFM should be filed at least 3 hours in advance in accordance
with IFPS procedures. Other FPLs, i.e. VFR or to countries not participating in the IFPS
system, such as Morocco, should be filed at least 1 hour in advance.


Flight Plan Administration

Some operators, including scheduled airlines, normally accept responsibility for their
own flight plan administration. The Support Staff are responsible for the checking,
receipt and despatch of all other flight plans and signals, and informing the Watch
Manager immediately of ETAs, delays, cancellations and other relevant information


Air Traffic Flow Management
ATC Gibraltar is responsible for ensuring that flight plans are accepted into the IFPS.
Any request for variation of a CTOT must be made in accordance with the instructions
in the CFMU Handbook.
The following are exempt from ATFM measures:

A. Flights in emergency, including those being hijacked.
B. Medical / Ambulance flights whenever human life is endangered.
C. Flights on SAR missions, or any other humanitarian purpose.
D. OAT flights.
ATC Gibraltar is not responsible for the administration of flow control messages in
respect of scheduled flights. The airlines or handling agents have responsibility for
coordinating these.



There are no noise abatement procedures for airborne aircraft at Gibraltar.


Diversion Action
If an aircraft elects to divert the following action is to be taken:
7.1.1 Civil Aircraft Diversion

Civil Aircraft Diversion
A. Approach Controller to coordinate diversion with Seville ACC and request routeing,
level and frequency.
B. ATC is to advise GIBAIR handling of the diversion.


Diversion Action
If an aircraft elects to divert the following action is to be taken:
Military Aircraft Diversion

Military Aircraft Diversion
Military aircraft operating to and from Gibraltar are forbidden to overfly Spanish
Territory. Military aircraft therefore, except when in emergency or operating for the
saving of life (Medevac), may not use Spanish airports for diversion purposes. The
airfields normally used are Tangier, Porto and Lisbon. Faro can only be used as an
emergency diversion airfield and cannot be nominated on a flight plan.
A. Approach Controller to coordinate diversion with Seville ACC and request routeing,
level and frequency.
B. ATC is to advise RAF Operations or the RAF Duty Officer of the diversion.


Gibraltar Met Office - Information METAR

METAR Routine aviation weather reports (MET 2309) issued hourly at time 50.


Gibraltar Met Office - Information SPECI

SPECI Aviation special weather reports issued following a significant change
from the previous report.


Gibraltar Met Office - Information LAF

LAF Local Area Forecasts. A forecast of conditions and significant changes
expected during a specified period. Two forecasts are normally issued:
A morning LAF at 0530Z to cover the period 0700Z-1500Z.
An afternoon LAF at 1300Z to cover the period 1400Z-2359Z


Gibraltar Met Office - Information WARNINGS

WARNINGS Warnings of significant meteorological conditions, including
All relevant met information is faxed to both the ATC switchboard and the VCR


Forecasters are on duty from

0600L to 2300L, or later if arrangements have been made
in advance to cover exercises etc. Met Observers are available throughout airfield
opening hours. In the event of flights outside normal hours, if there is no Forecaster
available, METARs will be issued, but on occasions the Met Observer may be unable to
guarantee the issue of SPECIs, due to other tasks. Warnings, such as Thunderstorm
Warnings, will not be issued when the Forecaster is off duty.


ATCO Met briefings

ATCOs are either to visit the Met Office to receive a briefing, or are to use the SelfBriefing
Facility in the ACR, prior to taking over watch.


8.3 Watchman Radar QNH Entry

On receipt of the faxed MET2309 from Met, the switchboard Support Staff will input the
QNH into the Master Flight Data Processing Position. If the controller is present he is to
be informed of the correct pressure, and is to acknowledge. The Support Staff will then
place the new MET2309 on the clip under the HRDF display. If the controller is not
present, the MET2309 should be placed prominently on the controller’s FPS board.


Special Met reports

When a crash or major incident takes place on, or in the vicinity of, the airfield the
Watch Manager is to inform the Duty Met Officer, who will raise a special weather report. The report is to be disseminated in accordance with the ATC Reporting
Actions Manual (GIB/Manual/001).


8.5 Wind Limitations
Generally a 1000ft wind of less than 15kts does not produce significant turbulence,
however with a wind direction between ....

....110OM and 250OM and speeds in excess of
15kts, the severity of the turbulence increases as the wind speed increases.


Wind speeds above....

....25kts may cause severe turbulence and marked variation in
airspeed during the latter stages of approach.
Pilots will observe wind limitations for landing as published by their Operating Authority.


Anemometer Readings
The Met office maintains three anemometers at Gibraltar with indicators in the Radar
Room and the VCR. These are situated as follows:

1. RW27 anemometer situated to the north of the RW 27 threshold.
2. Centre anemometer situated at the mid point of the runway on the mast adjacent
to the control tower building.
3. RW09 anemometer situated on the 430 mole.


WIND; The electronic displays provide ATCOs with....

instant wind, two minute mean and ten
minute gust information. They also provide information on crosswind and headwind
component. The two minute mean wind will be passed to arriving and departing
aircraft. At the ATCO’s discretion, in addition to the two minute mean, the Instant wind
may also be passed when considered of value.



Departing aircraft are normally passed the upwind anemometer readings as

Whenever the wind speed is 15kts or more and the wind direction is 30 degrees or
more from the runway direction, or turbulence or wind shear is observed or suspected,
then both the centre anemometer and the upwind anemometer readings should be
passed as follows:



Landing aircraft are normally passed the appropriate touchdown anemometer
readings as followed:
“Surface wind xxx/xx”
Whenever the touchdown or centre anemometer readings show a wind speed of 15kts
or more and the wind direction is 30 degrees or more from the runway direction then
both readings must be passed to pilots before landing:


During conditions of turbulence and/or wind shear controllers should pass...

anemometer readings during aircraft approaches. Controllers should use caution
whenever the wind direction has a southerly component as any anemometer in the lee
of the rock or high buildings may be affected by turbulence in strong wind conditions
which may cause the readings to fluctuate wildly or become inaccurate. Controllers may
continue to pass readings from anemometers in such conditions but should include the
following phraseology:
“Surface/Centre wind xxx/xx- this anemometer may be affected by
turbulence from the rock”


On occasions, especially when sea breeze conditions exist, tailwinds can occur at
both ends of the runway and in such circumstances controllers should pass ....

all three
anemometer readings to pilots as follows:
“RW27 touchdown wind xxx/xx Centre wind xxx/xx RW09 touchdown wind


In the event of failure of any anemometer the controllers must not pass information
obtained from that anemometer. Controllers can provide information derived from the
two wind socks, if visible, which are located:

1. RW27 wind sock situated to the north of the RW 27 threshold.
2. RW09 windsock situated on the 430 mole.
The wind socks are calibrated to 30kts and provide information as follows:
A. Wind sock at 90 degrees to pole – wind 30 kts
B. Wind sock at 45 degrees to pole – wind 15 kts
Controllers should state:
‘Surface wind is unavailable, surface wind believed to be xx/xx from
windsock/pilots report/ met forecast’


Use of the Non-Duty Runway and Runway Change Checklist
At all times only aircraft in emergency or aircraft carrying out flight checks may make
an approach to the non-duty runway. In all other circumstances, either for an arrival or
departure, a full runway change must be completed:

1. ADC will co-ordinate the RWY change with APC
2. Inform Watch Manager
3. Inform Aerodrome ATCA
4. Inform SAPPHO
5. Change RWY Lights
6. Inform any affected WIP Parties
7. Inform all Gibraltar Air Traffic


Pilots must not be allocated a runway which is not into wind unless they have been
provided with the following wind information and have agreed to accept the runway.

A. Landing aircraft should be provided with the touchdown and centre anemometer
wind readings prior to the approach.
B. On issue of take-off clearance aircraft should be provided with all three anemometer


8.13 Local Observations by other than the Gibraltar Meteorological Office

The Met Office is situated in the control tower building. Occurrences observed by ATCOs
either visually or on radar should be reported to the Met Office and an update
requested. Information from pilots is to be passed to the Met Office and to other aircraft
as required.


8.14 Turbulence and/or Wind Shear

The Met Office Area Forecast will contain warnings of turbulence and wind shear
Any information on turbulence and/or wind shear, including indications of sea
turbulence or waterspouts, reported by pilots or observed by ATC, is to be relayed to
aircraft and the Met Office as soon as possible. In such conditions additional
anemometer readings should be passed to aircraft.


8.15 ATC Met Report distribution

The Switchboard Support Staff is to distribute these to Approach as soon as possible
after receipt from the Met Office. The ADC receives Met information directly by fax.


8.15 ATC Met Report distribution

The Switchboard Support Staff is to distribute these to Approach as soon as possible
after receipt from the Met Office. ADC and Approach are to update their Met Warning
Boards and inform aircraft under their control of any relevant Met Warning.


Thunderstorm Warning - Criteria Thunderstorm Warnings

Thunderstorm Warnings are issued when thunderstorms have formed, or are
forecast to occur, within 40km of Gibraltar. They will be issued as early as possible and
will contain; details of timing; duration and movement, as appropriate.

The issue of a Thunderstorm Level message automatically cancels any previous
Thunderstorm Level message.


Thunderstorm Warning - Criteria HIGH

Thunderstorm Level High Thunderstorms are occurring or are expected over
Gibraltar in the immediate future (normally in about 15 mins)


Thunderstorm Warning - Criteria MODERATE

Thunderstorm Level Moderate Thunderstorms are developing or have been reported
within about 40km of Gibraltar, but are not expected to affect Gibraltar in the
immediate future.


Thunderstorm Warning - Criteria LOW

Thunderstorm Level Low Thunderstorms are not occurring at the present time or are
not expected.


8.17 Aircraft refuelling

The responsibility for continued refuelling during Thunderstorm Level Warnings lies with
the Fuelling Supervisor, the aircraft Captain, the AFRS, and appropriate RAF personnel.
ATC has no responsibility in this decision making process.


Aircraft Refuelling – Thunderstorm Warnings

Thunderstorm Warning Refuelling of aircraft is unaffected.


Aircraft Refuelling – Thunderstorm Warnings HIGH

Thunderstorm Level High Refuelling is normally only permitted when the
aircraft and refuelling vehicle are co-located in a
hangar. In exceptional circumstances refuelling
may take place outside provided procedures
specified by RAF Flight Operations are


Aircraft Refuelling – Thunderstorm Warnings MODERATE

Thunderstorm Level Moderate Refuelling is permitted, provided that the Fuelling
Supervisor receives regular updates from the Met
Office on the proximity of the Thunderstorm


Aircraft Refuelling – Thunderstorm Warnings LOW

Thunderstorm Level low Refuelling of aircraft is unaffected


8.18 Radio Sonde Launches

If a request is received from the Met Office to launch a weather balloon, this should be
accommodated subject to traffic conditions.
The Radio Sonde balloon has a vertical lift component of approximately 1200ft per
minute. If the Met Office calculates that the Radio Sonde will parachute back to earth
within 20nm of the airfield they will warn the Watch Manager accordingly.