Jan. 6, 2022

The recent addition of new RNAV SIDs supporting simultaneous RNAV departures from parallel runways is leading to confusion for some pilots when ATC uses the prescribed phraseology for these SIDs.

Many large airports conduct simultaneous RNAV departures from parallel runways. The first waypoint published on the RNAV SID is typically unique to each runway, allowing for an RNAV route that separates these simultaneous departures. Therefore, it is important that the correct runway and RNAV SID runway transition for takeoff is loaded in the FMS, as assigned by ATC. Pilots must review the “Attention All Users Page” that accompanies these RNAV SIDs

To ensure the pilot has the correct runway and correct first waypoint loaded in the FMS, ATC will issue the takeoff clearance using the “RNAV to ” phraseology, (e.g., “Cessna 123X, RNAV to FACTS, runway 36R cleared for takeoff”). When this “RNAV to” phraseology is issued, pilots are expected to verify the correct takeoff runway and then RNAV route to stated waypoint is correctly loaded in the FMS. They should respond to the clearance using the same phraseology (e.g., “Cessna 123X, RNAV to FACTS, runway 36R cleared for takeoff”).

Pilots must not confuse this clearance with a “direct to” clearance to the stated waypoint. Pilots must fly the RNAV SID’s route from the runway to the waypoint as loaded in the nav database. The RNAV route coded in the nav database may include specific routing (e.g., heading-to-altitude/direct-to fix, heading to course intercept/course to fix) that must be followed to ensure required separation between simultaneous runway departures.

Pilots are encouraged to review and use proper phraseology to ensure safety during simultaneous RNAV SID departures on parallel runways.

For more information, review AIM Section 5-2-8.