Update March 4:
Local agents report that ATC services are back to normal in Myanmar, as most ATC staff have returned to work. Operators overflying the VYYF/Yangon FIR should therefore be getting normal ATC service again now, and the Contingency Procedures are no longer in effect, but be on alert for the situation to change quickly.
Story from Feb 13:
Myanmar is no longer providing ATC service to overflights, due to lack of ATC staff.
Thousands of people across the country are taking part in nationwide strikes and protests against the military who overthrew the government at the start of February, and some ATC staff have joined in.
Local sources estimate that 70% ATC and 80% AIS staff are on strike, with very limited operations at NOTAM offices.
ATC service is still being provided at VYYY/Yangon, the country’s main airport, which remains open for arrivals and departures.
But for overflights of the country (the VYYF/Yangon FIR), all operators now have to follow the Contingency Procedures:
- 15 minute separation will be applied to all overflights
- You can only transit the airspace via specific waypoints, airways, and at certain flight levels.
Here are the VYYF/Yangon Notams that carry the announcement:
A0038/21 - DUE TO DISRUPTION OF ATS IN YANGON FIR ALL ACFT ARE ADVISED THAT THE MYANMAR INT'L CONTINGENCY PLAN FOR ACFT INTENDING TO OVERFLY THESE FIRS IS IN EFFECT.FLIGHT PLANING MUST BE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONTINGENCY ROUTES LISTED AND FL ASSIGNMENT.PILOTS MUST STRICTLY ADHERE TO THE CONTINGENCY PROCEDURES.ONLY APPROVED INT'L FLIGHTS ARE PERMITTED TO OVERFLY MYANMAR AIRSPACE.(RMK- YANGON INT'L AIRPORT APP AND TWR CONTROL SERVICE AVBL FOR ALL ARR/DEP TRAFFIC. 08 FEB 12:28 2021 UNTIL 28 FEB 23:59 2021. CREATED: 08 FEB 13:04 2021
A0037/21 - YANGON ACC WILL APPLY 15 MIN SEPARATION IN YANGON FIR FOR ALL OVERFLY TRAFFIC AND DEP/ARR TRAFFIC DUE TO LACK OF ATC STAFF. MAKE SURE TO PROVIDE ABOVE MENTIONED SEPARATION OVER ALL CONVERGING POINT IN YANGON FIR AND MONITOR THE ALL TRAFFIC. 08 FEB 06:30 2021 UNTIL 28 FEB 23:59 2021 ESTIMATED. CREATED: 08 FEB 08:36 2021
Here’s a quick reference map of where we’re talking about:
And here’s the info on the Contingency Routes in effect, as published in the Myanmar AIP section ENR 3.5:
|West bound||320,340||Kolkatta ACC||HF, ADS/CPDLC|
|East bound||350||Bangkok ACC||VHF|
|West bound||320,380||Kolkatta ACC||HF, ADS/CPDLC|
|East bound||290||Kumming ACC||VHF|
|West bound||300,380||Kolkatta ACC||HF, VHF,
|East bound||330,410||Bangkok ACC||VHF|
|West bound||280||Chennai OCC||HF, ADS/CPDLC|
|East bound||270||Bangkok ACC||VHF|
|West bound||300,320||Dhaka FIR||VHF/HF|
|East bound||330,410||Vientiane FIR||VHF|
Here’s what that looks like in map form:
Following the coup on Feb 1, the Myanmar Military declared a state of emergency and assumed control. Airports across the country were briefly closed, but a Notam issued on Feb 3 declared they were all open again. The strikes and protests started up on Feb 6, and show no signs of stopping anytime soon – despite a ban on large public gatherings and night-time curfews imposed by the military.
The VYYF Notams say that the current airspace restrictions will remain in place until Feb 28, but given the volatile situation on the ground right now, this could well get extended. We will keep this page updated with the latest news as we get it.
You won’t find the full version of the Myanmar ATS Contingency Plan in their AIP yet – the Myanmar CAA have stored it elsewhere on their website. You can find it here.
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