Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has split the Lagos Sub-Flight Information Region (Sub-FIR) airspace into two sectors, reports Nigerian Flight Deck
The sectorisation which took off at exactly 00.01 UTC on 18 July was a culmination of a two-year strategic plan by the agency to achieve sectored operations in the Lagos sub-FIR owing to the congested single radio frequency enroute control operations.
NAMA managing director Captains Fola Akinkuotu said sectorising Lagos became imperative owing to the increasing volume of traffic and the attendant challenges posed to both pilots and air traffic controllers.
Measures included the development of standard operating procedures (SOPs) and a test-run of the procedures at the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), Zaria; in-house training of needed manpower to boost capacity in the two sectors; enhancement of the required support facilities for ground-ground and air-ground communication; update of the radar maps and database of the radar system; test run of the radar system and radio communication equipment, as well as the issuance of an Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP) supplement on May 9 to give airspace users 56 days notification as required by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and Part 14 of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations.
Akinkuotu listed other milestones to include the signing of Letters of Agreement with adjacent FIRs like Accra, Douala, and Lome; the signing of letters of procedures between Lagos – Abuja and Lagos – Port Harcourt; development and publication of Nigerian enroute charts showing the delineation of the East and West airspace sectors and the conduct of safety assessment as well as a stakeholders’ forum.