What's going on in France tonight ?

Old Dec 21, 15, 10:41 pm
  #16  
 
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There are delays for flights between Spain/Portugal and the UK flying over the west of France because new equipment has been installed in the ATC centre in Brest. Flights in this airspace have been reduced to allow controllers to get used to the new system. That is why some flights are routing further west over the Bay of Biscay than normal or going east via Marseilles and Dijon. This can have a knock on effect creating delays for flights that normally go over the east of France.

As far as London-Milan is concerned, a routing via Stuttgart and Zurich is not unusual. However most London-Geneva/Milan flights usually route just west of Paris. Part of this airspace is also controlled from Brest and has delays hence some flights are going the 'pretty way'.

Last edited by winchpete; Dec 22, 15 at 1:20 am
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Old Dec 22, 15, 1:04 am
  #17  
 
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What's going on in France tonight ?

Another data point BA 2736 LGW - GVA this morning went round over Belgium and came down the eastern side of France (Metz - Nancy) to arrive near Basel then on the GVA
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Old Dec 22, 15, 1:52 am
  #18  
 
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I was listening to LiveATC at GVA tower and there were interesting discussions between at least one BA pilot and the tower about the routings (it was all in terms of waypoints but going to SOSAL when trying to get to the UK seemed a long way round to me). GVA was hit by severe fog and movements were strongly limited but above about 800 m there wasn't any fog - it was bright sunshine, so I really didn't understand any of it (and the exchanges between the tower and plane didn't provide any explanation).
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Old Dec 22, 15, 4:04 am
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What's going on in France tonight ?

We have had fog in the lake Geneva area for a couple of weeks but it was bad last Saturday... First big day of the winter season for GVA... All caused by high pressure and temperature inversions... And the water in the lake still being relatively warm compared to the air...
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Old Dec 22, 15, 4:40 am
  #20  
 
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But only the ba flight avoid France between LHR-GVA-LHR the swiss fight crossed France
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Old Dec 22, 15, 11:22 am
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This is just a guess, based on a bunch of Googling, but France seems to be conspicuously absent from the European Single Sky (Free Route Network) at the moment. Being in it seems to be a good thing from an efficiency point of view - perhaps because it's more straightforward, it takes less effort to get a slot.
Very few EU states are Free Route currently. The Irish and Norwegians springing to mind as trailblazers for this project. As winchpete stated the French are in the process of updating flight processing equipment at some of their centres. Capacity through sectors impacted has been reduced significantly while the controllers come up to speed with their new systems and it all beds in. Lots of flights to the Canaries from the UK have gone into Oceanic airspace west of the Bay of Biscay to avoid the restrictions. I presume similar things have been happening through the spine and to the east of France. Normal service should be resuming over the next few days. IIRC, the 21st was the last day of planned flow regulations.
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Old Dec 23, 15, 10:40 am
  #22  
 
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I was affected by this when flying on the BA2692 yesterday, LGW-FAO.

Noticed early in the morning that the flight was on time, 1315, but showing a 55 minute late arrival into FAO (1701). Got to LGW and enquired at the F Lounge desk as to what was going on and they were as puzzled as I was - aircraft was on time, had a slot for 1335 and still showing the usual block time (2h50).

Only once we were on board did the FO explain that due to "Industrial Action" in France we would be routing out over Land's End and on towards Ireland, taking 3h20 instead of the usual 2h20.

Fortunately there didn't seem to be any rationing of the booze in ET like there has been before, and we landed at 1701 after a pleasant but extended time in the tender embrace of the world's favourite.

Here was our routing - I wonder if the French should be billed for the fuel!?

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Old Dec 27, 15, 2:01 am
  #23  
 
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BA504, LHR-LIS last night, and no mention of the extra flying time, but was advised on the BA app that the arrival was delayed by an extra approx 50 mins!

We actually arrived about 10 minutes ahead of the planned delay, and it was mentioned that we landed ahead of planned!!

Great crew on this flight!
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Old Dec 27, 15, 3:21 am
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BA725 GVA-LHR about to take off, already a 1 hour delay, and now they're saying we'll be avoiding France and flying over Germany instead due to "air traffic restrictions".
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Old Dec 27, 15, 3:52 am
  #25  
 
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On the next GVA-LHR (BA727), also advised we should be about an hour late into Heathrow, making my EWR connection tighter than I would have liked...

Everything on the board here (Heathrows and Gatwicks) are showing delays of 20 - 60 minutes.
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Old Dec 27, 15, 4:32 pm
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GVA delays today were due to low visibility.

Re: delays and extended routings to avoid French airspace - the traffic regulations (20% reduction) are due to expire on Jan 7th. In fairness to the French, they have been lifting delays as often as they can on a tactical basis to permit more flights through their airspace.
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Old Dec 28, 15, 12:31 am
  #27  
 
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BA499 has a ground hold in LIS of approx 1 hour, and an estimated flying time of 2 hrs 11 minutes per the Captain, and will be avoiding French Airspace, according to the Captain.

Incidentally appears to be the same crew I came with! Captain and FO for certain are same, and are supplying considerably more info than on the outbound flight!
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Old Dec 29, 15, 2:11 am
  #28  
 
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This still seems to be a problem, my FAO-LGW this afternoon is already delayed 40 minutes due to the late inbound aircraft. Fortunately we seem to be going back direct as only 25 mins late into LGW.
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