Where have Africa’s Notams gone?

By Rebecca Lougheed

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ASECNA have a secret treasure trove of AIP SUPs on all kinds of airport closures and other fairly essential info that doesn’t seem to be getting published by Notam. 

Now, it might be because these are relatively long things and as you may recall, Notams shouldn’t really be valid for longer than 3 months because then it is less temporary and more, well, lengthy.

But there are still some in there that we really would expect to see as notams. Such as:

  • FOON/Franceville, Gabon having potholes in its runway and so not allowing operations on runway 33 from Oct 4 to Dec 31.
  • GOSS/Saint Louis, Senegal is closed to all traffic for works from Oct 5 to Dec 27.
  • DXXX/Lome, Togo is having works until Dec 31 so folk should watch out for workers and their machinery during taxi.
  • GOGG/Ziguinchor, Senegal is closed from Sep 19 to Feb 28 2023 because of security works.

And that’s just the obvious ones we spotted – there are plenty more! Here’s the list of ‘latest news’ list they publish:

So the point really is, check this page if you are planning Togo into or over ASECNA countries because things that could impact your operation do not seem to be Notam-ed, and they could have a significant impact, particularly with regards alternate and en-route aerodromes.

And if you’ve Benin an ASECNA country or airspace and have experienced issues (with un-Notamed stuff or anything else) then please drop us an email with the details on news@ops.group so we can share the info around to other folk.

(Sorry for the puns. It’s been nice Chad-ing).

ASECNA are raising their fees.

Specifically, their en-route fees another airport lighting fees.

AIC 33/A/22GO was issued Oct 10 and is effective from January 1 2023. 26/A/22FC came out at the same time (and says the same thing).

  • En-route fees will increase by 5%
  • Runway lighting fees will increase by 3%

So, if you are an international flight this means the following:

  • If you weight less than 4 tonnes you won’t get charged.
  • If you weigh between 4 and 14 tonnes you will be charged 220.76 Euro
  • If you weigh more than 14 tonnes then you will be charged 110.38 Euro

But then there is the co-efficient bit, and then there are these two tables as well…

Again, here is the ASECNA AIC/AIP page so you can find any others to check them as well.

Wait… what is ASECNA?

ASECNA is the Agency for Security of Air Navigation in Africa and Madagascar. They look after Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea Bissau, Mali, Mauritanie, Niger, Senegal, Togo, and Madagascar.

Which in terms of FIRs, means the FMMM/Antananarivo, FCCC/Brazzaville, DRRR/Niamey, FTTT/N’Djamena and GOOO/Dakar oceanic and terrestrial.

That all looks a little like this:

The ASECNA FIRs.

What else has been happening here recently?

Well, if you missed it, then a big ATC strike in October 2022 caused some trouble because they started using non-trained personnel to fill the ATC seats – a very risky practice which we obviously don’t like.

It hasn’t been all bad news with them though. In June 2022 they also started implementing Free Route Airspace, and they have a pretty decent ADS-B service set up across the region.

Then there has been the fuel shortage woes. This isn’t necessarily within ASECNA airspace, but impacts the entire region so worth a mention.

What about airspace safety?

Chad (the FTTT/N’Djamena FIR and FTTJ/N’Djamena international) saw land and air borders closures in 2021 following the death of their President and effectively a military rule brought in.

Mali had a military coup and reneged on agreements to hold elections, leading to sanctions from the rest of ECOWAS (their neighbours) which resulted in closures of land and air borders.

Flown in to any of these countries recently? Send us your report!

Please send us your Airport Spy reports so we can share the gotchas, the things to know, contacts to contact and anything else useful.

What’s Airport Spy? Well, you write a quick little postcard with “what happened” when you went to some airport somewhere. Then you, and others (that’s the magic), can refer to your notes for future flights to the same place. Try it here if you haven’t already.

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Rebecca Lougheed

Rebecca Lougheed

I am an OPSGROUP team member, an A340/A380 pilot, and interested in all things flight ops, cats and beer related. Based near an undisclosed airfield in England. Question for us? Write to blog.team@ops.group.

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