July 28, 2014

Listen to an NBAA Flight Plan podcast on the Association’s new Weather Subcommittee.

A new effort to improve the gathering and dissemination of weather information to general aviation operators was highlighted on July 21, as NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen announced the formation of a new NBAA Weather Subcommittee. Ed Bolton, FAA associate administrator for NextGen, and other government and industry officials were present at the announcement, which was made at the summer meeting of the Friends & Partners of Aviation Weather (FPAW).

“A lot of people, at every level, are dedicating their time and expertise to help us try and identify the best weather practices, and best weather information, so that together we can ultimately disseminate it,” Bolen said at the FPAW meeting, which was held at NTSB headquarters in Washington, DC. “Working together, we can collectively raise the bar and continue to enhance aviation safety, not just in the U.S., but around the world.”

NBAA has sponsored the FPAW event since the group’s inaugural meeting at the NBAA convention in Dallas in 1997. The now biannual event draws together the aviation weather community to discuss, recommend and implement solutions and policies regarding aviation weather and flight safety. In addition to FPAW participation, NBAA works daily on weather-related issues, and has one of its Air Traffic Services specialists – John Kosak – representing business aviation on the FAA Collaborative Decision Making Weather Evaluation subteam.

“The formation of our new Weather Subcommittee, part of NBAA’s long-standing Access Committee, is the next logical step for NBAA’s involvement,” said Bolen. “The new subcommittee gives us the opportunity to leverage the efforts and information we have today and make sure that information is put into the hands of operators. We hope to understand weather better, communicate weather better and ultimately operate in a safer way.”

Bolen added that NBAA has been working closely with the FAA for years on weather-related issues and programs, such as the recently launched “Got Weather?” initiative described by Bolton at the FPAW meeting. The Got Weather? initiative offers information about a variety of weather-related phenomena, ranging from agency publications, to news articles and other resources across the aviation community.

“Through the new Weather Subcommittee, NBAA will be reaching out to the broader aviation community – including government program managers, pilots, dispatchers, weather information providers, the research and academic communities, and others – to gain broad community perspective, collaboration, consensus and buy-in,” said Bolen. “NBAA Members and general aviation operators as a whole will benefit because the long-term goal is to provide more accurate current and forecast weather across the aviation spectrum, in order to enhance the safety and efficiency of the National Airspace System.”

Bruce Carmichael, who serves not only as vice chairman of the NBAA Access Committee, but also with the National Center for Atmospheric Research, will chair the new Weather Subcommittee. Kosak will be the Association’s staff liaison to the subcommittee.