Anonymous asked in Cars & TransportationAircraft · 9 years ago

VFR in class A airspace?

This is a question to which I already have the answer. I will post the link proving the correct answer after I vote for the best answer under askers comment. Most pilots will get this wrong. That's a huge hint. This is to help other pilots who don't understand regulations. Here's the question. Can you fly VFR in class A airspace? Easy 10 points!


Please be descriptive in yor answer. There's already two good answers here and I want to pich the answer that helps others the most! Thanks!

10 Answers

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Yes, but only if you experience a 2-way communications failure while operating IFR in Class A.

  • 9 years ago

    Absolutely. You can fly VFR while on an IFR flight plan if you choose to do so, all you have to have is visual referencing and meet the required weather minimums to be in technical VFR.

    So with Class A, what are the requirements to be at FL180 or above? Alt reporting transponder, Instrument rating, and two way communications. You must obviously have an instrument flight planned filed.In all regards to safety, if you're at 17,500 and need to climb for whatever reason, deteriorating conditions below, you can request permission from the controller to enter into Class A airspace, even without an IFR rating and no punitive action will be taken, in fact- as pilot in command and you feel as if there is a safety issue, you should do whatever you need to keep the flight safe. File a NASA report in case you feel that it might come back to haunt you, but it probably will not.

    Now chances are that you're on the controllers frequency and you're being monitored by radar. In the event radar coverage fails or the controller is busy and the cloud coverage is minimal- you can see a horizon, you can mention this to the controller and carry out your flight as filed. Now you're truly VFR because you are then responsible for visual separation and avoiding obstacles- although you would be in IFR too, and you're responsible for your own navigation.

    Is it wise to do? No, the big and fast boys are up there. Can it be done? Yes.

  • In addition to the lost comms issue already addressed...

    In Canada..

    601.06 (1) No person shall operate a VFR aircraft in Class A airspace unless the aircraft is operated in accordance with an authorization issued by the Minister.

    (2) The Minister may issue an authorization referred to in subsection (1) where the operation of the aircraft is in the public interest and is not likely to affect aviation safety.

    In the US..

    § 91.135 (d)

    ATC authorizations. An operator may deviate from any provision of this section under the provisions of an ATC authorization issued by the ATC facility having jurisdiction of the airspace concerned. In the case of an inoperative transponder, ATC may immediately approve an operation within a Class A airspace area allowing flight to continue, if desired, to the airport of ultimate destination, including any intermediate stops, or to proceed to a place where suitable repairs can be made, or both. Requests for deviation from any provision of this section must be submitted in writing, at least 4 days before the proposed operation. ATC may authorize a deviation on a continuing basis or for an individual flight.


    Paul have a look at 91.159,(2) (b) and 91.185(b)

  • 9 years ago

    Can you fly VFR in Class A Airspace? VMC (Visual Meteorological Conditions) exist at all altitudes. Happens every day. The question throws you off because of how it's worded. This guy MUST work for the FAA, and he got every single one of you. You can file an IFR flight plan, fly under IFR rules with ZERO clouds or humidity in the sky. Old hat for 135 operators. We all know the requirements for operating in Class A Airspace. But ask yourself, what is VFR? (Visual Flight Rules) What does it deal with? Basically its all about seeing and avoidance. At 35,000ft MSL, where there is often no clouds,(though they periodically get there during storms) pilots do this everyday.(see and avoid) In VMC, they are responsible for seeing and avoiding traffic, regardless of IFR rules or flight planing. It is only in IMC (Instrument Meteorological Conditions) that approach control, air route traffic control are responsible for separation. (IFR, IMC, separation/ VFR, VMC, visual separation, get it?) When operating in other airspace, the cloud clearance requirements are either clear of clouds, 500 below, 1000 above and 2000 horizontal or 1000 below, 1000 above 1SM horizontal...Basically it's telling you no matter what airspace you're in, stay away from clouds unless you absolutely cannot avoid them, which would be IMC....Come on guys.....

    Source(s): Myself, Instrument rated general aviation pilot.....See small picture.
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  • Paul M
    Lv 5
    9 years ago


    As there is no such thing as VFR in class A. If for no other reason than there are no published VFR minimums for class A airspace.

    In general class A airspace starts at FL180 and the highest possible VFR altitude is 17500'

    An aircraft may operate in class A if they cannot meet the requirements for IFR. But only with the permission of the controlling authority as described in 91.135. This in no way means the aircraft is operating under VFR.

  • 9 years ago

    In the USA, according to 14 CFR part 91.185(b), if your radio fails while operating under IFR, you should continue the flight under VFR and land as soon as possible. So, under these circumstances, you could (should) fly VFR in class A airspace.

  • 9 years ago

    short answer: no, class a airspace is ifr only.

    i see no point in legalistic hairsplitting. while the regulations provide for exceptions, i can't imagine why such a flight might occur.

  • 9 years ago

    This is a question to which I already have the answer, too, but Yahoo Answers is not a game show.

  • 9 years ago

    No, "VFR on top" is actually an IFR clearance and doesn't negate your clearance or ATC responsibility.

  • 9 years ago

    simple. no

    Source(s): AIP Vol 1 ENR1.4-5
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