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3 Answers

Missed Approach after sidestep/swingover

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Instrument Rating

Hey, I have a question regarding a swingover (I'm flying in an JAA/EASA country, so that's the term we use; the FAA guys probably know it as sidestep). Assuming I've been cleared for an instrument approach at an airport with a parallel ¬†RWY system and I'm on final and the controller asks me if I can accept a swingover to the other runway. I confirm that and he clears me to swingover and land. Now let's say s/he didn't specify any missed approach to be followed, which one shall I fly? Of course, in the real world, I'd ask, but is it laid down anywhere which one I'd have to follow? Both missed approaches have their pros and cons I suppose. Following the missed approach for the instrument approach runway is easy for workload, nothing new to be briefed on final, heads can remain up, but I might interfere with traffic from that runway. On the other hand, following the missed approach for the landing runway doesn't have the traffic issue, but it forces (unless VERY familiar with the airport) one pilot to check for the new missed approach in a low altitude environment, which is not safe either. So, which one is it (if it's in the regulations)? As mentioned before, if in doubt I'd always ask, but just wondering in case a check captain puts me in that situation and expects me to know and act accordingly.   Thanks for your answer, I'll appreciate it.

3 Answers



  1. Lion on Oct 18, 2013

    Fly the missed approach for the initial runway unless instructed otherwise by the ATC.

    Remember this fact: Your approach clearance is a “package” which includes your missed approach procedure. Unless your initial approach clearance is cancelled or your missed approach is amended by the ATC, you are expected to fly what you have been initially cleared for. The ATC is responsible to keep your MA procedure protected until you land.

    Note: If you were cleared for a visual approach to the parallel, neither missed approach procedure applies. Fly straight VFR departure and communicate your request with ATC.

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  2. Mark Kolber on Oct 19, 2013

    The only thing I’d add t Lion’s post is that an instrument side-step requires that the side-step maneuver (and its minimums) are authorized by the approach chart.

    So, just like circling, same chart, same approach, different minimums, same missed approach.

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  3. TK Knees on Jan 16, 2014

    Real world, your situation will probably go like this:

    Controller: Aircraft XYZ you”re cleared the ILS to 25L
    Controller (when you’re below the cloud deck): Aircraft XYZ are you able a sidestep to 25R?
    You: Affirmative
    Controller: Roger, aircraft xyz you’re cleared for the visual to 25R

    We hear it so often that it may not register, but the “visual” part of that last statement just altered your approach clearance from the ILS 25L to the Visual Approach 25R. A visual missed for 25R would be conducted if unable to land.

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