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2 Answers

Flight levels above 18,000 ft

Asked by: 2096 views , , , ,
Airspace, FAA Regulations, Instrument Rating

Would anyone like to take a shot and explain WHY AIM 3-1-5 (VFR altitudes) suggest to add 500 ft to flight levels above 18,000 ft?  1) You must be instrument rated and on an instrument flight plan at 18,000ft and above.  2). When would anyone be VFR above 18,000.

AIM 3-1-5 seems to contradict the regulations...

Has anyone noticed this before?

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2 Answers



  1. Sam Dawson on Jul 15, 2014

    Lost comms while operating above FL180 in VFR conditions.

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  2. mavman on Jul 31, 2014

    Article: http://www.avweb.com/news/system/182429-1.html?redirected=1

    6-4-1. Two-way Radio Communications Failure

    2. VFR conditions. If the failure occurs in VFR conditions, or if VFR conditions are encountered after the failure, each pilot shall continue the flight under VFR and land as soon as practicable.

    NOTE- This procedure also applies when two-way radio failure occurs while operating in Class A airspace. The primary objective of this provision in 14 CFR Section 91.185 is to preclude extended IFR operation by these aircraft within the ATC system. Pilots should recognize that operation under these conditions may unnecessarily as well as adversely affect other users of the airspace, since ATC may be required to reroute or delay other users in order to protect the failure aircraft. However, it is not intended that the requirement to “land as soon as practicable” be construed to mean “as soon as possible.” Pilots retain the prerogative of exercising their best judgment and are not required to land at an unauthorized airport, at an airport unsuitable for the type of aircraft flown, or to land only minutes short of their intended destination.

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