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3 Answers

Procedure Turn

Asked by: 759 views FAA Regulations, Flight Instructor, Instrument Rating

Hello CFI's 

I work at a flight school in south Florida and me and other flight instructors have had a little bit of a discussion about weather or not pilots should do a procedure turn. If atc on an rnav approach other than one with a TAA format tells you : "proceed direct to an IAP ( that has a lieu of a PT) cleared for the RNAV X approch" do you have to do the procedure turn regardless where you are coming from?? (the aim says that generally a procedure turn is not required when the turn to the final approch course is less than 90 degress) but on my understanding a pt will always be required unless atc clears you for the 'straight in approch' (the aim says it right) regardless where you are coming from, unless a straight in area has been described in the approch (TAA format). I want to know what you guys think about this (:

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3 Answers



  1. Jeff on Aug 22, 2016

    The general rule is that unless the chart says “No PT” or ATC clears you straight in, then the PT is required if it’s shown on the chart. As always, if there is any confusion, just ask ATC for clarification. Also, if you don’t want to do the PT, just ask ATC.

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  2. Best Answer


    Russ Roslewski on Aug 22, 2016

    You are absolutely right and it appears you know the AIM reference already.

    Practically speaking, however, ATC often forgets to add the words “straight in”, and pilots often forget to confirm it, therefore it creates a situation of implied straight-in, which is really not a good situation. Sure, usually ATC wants you to go straight in and usually you want to go straight in, but without making sure each other knows what each of you expects, it can be dangerous.

    Best to confirm it and remove all doubt.

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  3. John D Collins on Aug 23, 2016

    If the PT or HILPT is charted, you must fly it unless one of the following four exceptions apply:

    1) You are receiving vectors to final
    2) The route or TAA segment is charted as NoPT
    3) You are cleared straight-in
    4) You are conducting a timed approaches from a holding fix

    There are numerous NASA reports of confusion on this point. So absent a clearance for a straight-in when it appears obvious that the hold is not needed, you are required to do the hold. However, as Russ points out, this is often an error on the part of the controller and they really intend you to fly straight in. The only way to clarify this is to ask.

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