Following the recent meeting to improve Notam availability on the AIS website, we can report that AIS has now updated the site with dummy codes that can be used for departure and destination at aviation sites that do not have an ICAO indicator. A full listing can be found in the FAQs on the site or at http://www.ais.org.uk/aes/en/image/oad.pdf
There are, however, still a number of concerns about the site which have been raised with the CAA by Mike Cross on behalf of AOPA.
He claims that some airfields have not been displaying Notam information for self-briefing by pilots. Where anything is displayed it is not to any standard; there is no backup for when the AIS site fails and at the moment no time-frame for providing one. Apart from the telephone system which is likely to come under increasing pressure as the flying season gets underway; there is no provision for anyone without web access to obtain a written brief other than by asking the Duty Officer to fax a brief.
These issues, he adds, will not be dealt with until a standardised one-button brief is available (expected April 2003) and has been made available for fax download, which will be at some later date.
Mike has written on behalf of AOPA to Phil Roberts, Assistant Director of Airspace Policy 1 at the CAA, requesting that the old A1/A8 bulletins be made available as an interim measure until the one-button download has been made available, has been properly trialled, and has gained general user acceptance. The standardised brief has also been made available for fax download, has been properly trialled, and has gained general user acceptance.
The CAA have also been asked that the AI/A8 and its successor, the one-button brief, should be made available from a different server to ais.org.uk or should be mirrored on to other servers so that it would remain available to users in the event of a failure of the main server.