NBAA Issues Advisory to Pilots Following Fire in Chicago Air Traffic Control Facility

Contact: Dan Hubbard, (202) 783-9360,

Washington, DC, Sept. 26, 2014 – The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) advises pilots to avoid the Chicago region if at all possible for 24 hours following a fire at an air traffic control facility in Aurora, IL, Friday morning.

The fire broke out early Friday morning at the Chicago Air Route Traffic Control Center, the FAA radar facility controlling high-level air traffic around the Chicago area. All inbound and outbound flights at major airline airports and regional airports that serve business aviation were suspended. The cause of the fire is currently under investigation.

“Today’s event in Chicago has had a severe impact on the ability of the FAA to maintain anywhere near normal traffic flows to or from airports, from Indiana all the way to the Michigan Upper Peninsula,” said Bob Lamond, NBAA Director of Air Traffic Services and Infrastructure. “We encourage pilots to avoid the area in order to provide FAA the ability to restore service.” 

While short-term, low-level re-routings are being slowly put into place, and FAA explores how to bring some measure of traffic back to the high-level infrastructure over the mid-west, NBAA strongly encourages pilots to perform only essential flights in ZAU airspace for the next 24 hours, he said. 

Pilots needing to operate in ZAU airspace should plan for extra fuel and lengthy delays.

The current status for the airspace is available via the FAA’s Operational Information System web page,

NBAA also encourages members to sign up for NBAA Airspace Alerts available by visiting

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Founded in 1947 and based in Washington, DC, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) is the leading organization for companies that rely on general aviation aircraft to help make their businesses more efficient, productive and successful. The Association represents more than 10,000 companies and provides more than 100 products and services to the business aviation community, including the NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition, the world’s largest civil aviation trade show. Learn more about NBAA at

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