Skip to comments.Air Force One Photo Op: What Was FAA's Role? (Link to Memo)
Posted on 04/30/2009 8:48:12 AM PDT by TankerKC
An FAA memo ( PDF) floating around the Internet Wednesday suggests that if the FAA didn't originate the secrecy surrounding Monday's White House photo op over New York, it certainly went along with it.
The memoauthored by James J. Johnston of the agency's security operations branchclearly indicates the FAA was notified well ahead of the planned flyover and that it recognized the kind of reaction it might cause. The memo begins by saying: "The information in this document is considered FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY, and should only be shared with persons with a need to know. Information in this document shall not be released to the public or media."
The document then details the flight planning and the schedule, including the intent to fly around as low as 1000 feet in the Hudson River Corridor in the vicinity of the Statute of Liberty. The flyover occurred on Monday morning and raised a considerable ruckus in lower Manhattan and mid-town, as hundreds of workers panicked and evacuated buildings in the city, fearful of another 9/11-type terrorist attack. Also circulating the news sites are recordings of hysterical calls to New York's emergency services numbers.
The FAA did not respond to email and telephone requests for comment and, interestingly, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association told AVweb that it was declining comment because it didn't normally comment on security issues.
(Excerpt) Read more at avweb.com ...
Somebody should file a FOIA to see who was on the plane!
I Officially want to use it to blow this administrations narcissism sky high! How’s that?
SUBJECT: Flight Notification- New York City -Statue of Liberty Photo Op, Upper New York Bay / Newark Bay on April 27, 2009, 10:00L. (amended 4/23)
The information in this document is considered FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY, and should only be shared with persons with a need to know. Information in this document shall not be released to the public or media.
1. The Department of Defense (DOD), in coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), will conduct a flying photo op in the New York City Area on April 27, 2009 involving a transport and fighter aircraft. Below are the details regarding the operation.
Date: Monday April 27, 2009 (Primary), April 28 or April 30 (weather backup dates)
Number / Type Aircraft: 1 VC-25 and 2 F-16s. Actual photo op will only have VC25 and 1 F16.
Departure point: ADW
Arrival point: ADW
Flight Plan: Crews will file two separate IFR flight plans:
ADW-JFK: KADW.. PALEO V44 SIE CAMRN4 JFK
Requested altitude FL190B210
EWR-ADW: KEWR..EWR7.BIGGY J75 MXE V378 BAL KADW
Planned Departure Time: 0930 approximately
Planned Time On Photo Op Location: 10:00 -10:30L.
Planned Photo Op Altitude: 1000-1500ft
Number of Passes: 2, possibly 3
The aircraft will depart ADW via IFR clearance as a three (3) ship formation to Sea Isle (SIE). At SIE one (1) of the fighters will leave the flight and return to ADW IFR via SIE ATR V308 BILIT ADW.
The VC25 and 1 F16 will proceed IFR to CAMRN intersection south of JFK. In the vicinity of CAMRN intersection the aircraft will cancel IFR and proceed VFR with New York TRACON (N90) towards the Verranzano Bridge. N90 will hand the aircraft off to Newark Tower (EWR) for the flight in the Upper NY and Newark Bay. Upon completion of the final pass the aircraft will be treated as a EWR departure and pickup an IFR clearance back to ADW.
The photo op portion of the flight will be VFR in accordance with the specified ground track as per the attached map (Attachment 1). On the northbound flight segments the fighter aircraft will be offset to the east by approximately ½ mile. During the southbound flight segment the fighter will re-position to remain offset to the aircraft within the depicted box.
The operation will be monitored by FAA Air Traffic Security Coordinators (ATSC) at the Domestic Event Network at FAA Headquarters from start to finish. Any questions or issues can be directed to the FAA ATSC at the DEN. The FAA ATSC can be reached at (202) 493-5107.
The Public Affairs posture for this effort is passive. No media or press releases are planned. Please direct all media inquiries to the FAA Air Traffic Security Coordinator at (202) 493-5107. Due to the possibility of public concern regarding DOD aircraft flying at low levels, coordination with Federal, State and Local law enforcement agencies, emergency operations centers and aviation units has been accomplished.
JAMES J. JOHNSTON, FAA Air Traffic
AJR-2 System Operations Security
Disruptions to other flights in the area is a given. Our plane got delayed and I missed an important connection that ruined a trip, because Clinton was flying into town and they shut down the airport for an hour for Air Force One to land. I’ve never forgotten that.
The cost to the taxpayers for this photo op has been quoted at $300,000+, but the actual cost was far higher when the cumulative costs of the disruptions are factored in.
Thanks for posting the flight plan. There must be a request/order placed for this service; specifically a Reference.. that thread goes to the blinding brilliant source of this fiasco.
I don’t believe this is an authentic memorandum. There is no way they would be flying at 1000 feet under any circumstance and certainly not for a photo op.
Obama or any of the first family ( or VP) were on the plane.
There's always that possibility.
Only an IDIOT who approve something like this, unless they were trying to upset people in New York City!
The FAA should pay the laundry bills of all those who were panicked.
AKA - Scare Force One
A memo w/out a signature? Believable?
LOL. My Call Sign on my first T-37 Solo was "Scare 36."
I had a buddy who lost a business deal because he was sitting on the tarmac at LAX while Clinton got a haircut.
To this day he still turns beet red about it.
The List, ping
If they want a nicely framed shot of a VC-25 over the Statue of Liberty, or with the New York or Jersey City skylines? Yeah, they could be at 1000-1500 feet, easily. Look at the video that’s been floating around. Sure looks like it’s at least under 2000 feet to me.
Ya think MO had an appointment to get her hair and nails done after shopping and lunch?