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My passenger crossed into a controlled movement area

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FAA Regulations



After landing at a controlled airport my passenger accidentally crossed over the Non-Movement Area Boundary. Our plane was next to the boundary, he got on the phone while I was securing the airplane (puting on the cover, writing down the time, etc, etc) and he stepped into the controlled area (an active taxiway). He was one or two steps into the taxiway when others saw him and started yelling at him. I looked up, saw where he was and asked him to step in. Airport security showed up, my passenger apologized, they took down his information, and we left.


Did I break any FARs? Explaining to my passengers what the Non-Movement Area Boundary has never been part of my brief. Actually - I had never parked so close to a controlled area (literally two or three steps after clearing the wing), so I never thought much of it.


Although Airport Security didn't initially ask for my information, I understand they later asked around for my Certificate # and Contact Information. A fellow pilot that was around a knew me gave them my contact information. Should I be expecting a call from the FAA?





This is what the non-movement area marking looks like. We were parked next to the solid line: 

Non Area Movement Markings

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2 Answers

  1. Mark Kolber on Mar 26, 2013

    As PIC, you’re likely responsible for the aircraft and its passengers. If your airport has had incursion issues, you might hear from the FAA, in which case I would take two steps:

    1. Fill out a NASA ASRS form. There is no downside (so long as you don’t do something to break the anonymity of the process, like put your name in the report rather than =only= on the ID strip). The limited “get out of jail free” aspects of the process aside, this is a very good example of the type of report that should be filed since it deals with and educates others on an important aspect of aviation safety.

    2. Speak with a qualified aviation attorney. If you’re not a subscriber to AOPA’s Legal Services Plan, but an AOPA member, you can still get a list of the panel attorneys in your area. Most likely one of them will be willing to discuss the situation over the phone and give you some general direction of what to do it the FAA comes a-calling.

    I’m sure some would say that, in this situation a simple mea culpa – pretty much what you wrote in your post and what you would do in the future to avoid the situation – would take care of it and legal advise is overkill. That may end up being true but you never know with individual FSDO policies and inspectors. That’s why professional advice is always a good idea in these situations.

    (PS – it’s generally not a good idea to discuss an actual regulatory violation – potential or exiting – on a public forum, particularly one where your real name is listed)

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  2. Sam Dawson on Mar 27, 2013

    Please take what Mark wrote to heart. If you do not have the AOPA legal plan get it. Do NOT go to a FSDO or discuss the matter with anyone from the FAA without talking to an attorney.

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