So. California, Chicago Air Radar Falters : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

So. California, Chicago Air Radar Falters

Note: The mention of a computer glitch. Maybe they are testing? -- Diane

San Jose Mercury News -- Silicon Valley, California Posted at 6:44 a.m. PST Thursday, November 12, 1998

Southern California, Chicago air radar falters


The air traffic radar systems for Southern California and at O'Hare International Airport temporarily failed, but officials said passengers were not endangered.

The main radar system at O'Hare went down from about 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday and may have been caused by this week's strong winds and changing temperatures, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Don Zochert said.

A remote antenna called into action as a backup also experienced ``minor technical problems,'' but no passengers were ever at risk, Zochert said.

But air traffic controllers said the switch to Midway Airport's system left a 20-mile blind spot on their scopes as they directed aircraft within 40 miles of O'Hare. Controllers said it forced them to increase the separation between planes, causing delays.

Kurt Granger, head of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association local representing the controllers, said the main system will suffer malfunctions on occasion, but not having a good backup radar system at one of the world's busiest airports is ``not acceptable.''

Separately, a new radar system that guides aircraft in and out of Southern California's major airports failed for 11 minutes Tuesday evening because of a computer glitch but was replaced by a backup system, FAA spokesman Tim Pile said.

-- Diane J. Squire (, November 12, 1998


Hmmm. Those air traffic people, they just want so much don't they? Not only is the system apparently unnecessary - passengers weren't at risk, but they want a second system too! ;->

-- Mitchell Barnes (, November 13, 1998.

The radar also failed in a Utah airport last week. This is the second time for Chicago in the past two weeks.

-- Dave (, November 13, 1998.

Guys - can't you see they're just practicing for the day(s) when the ATC system won't work. 8<)

Gotta be ready to land that FAA administrator in the dark on the wee morning hours of 01/01/2000 - with no Ground Control Radar, no GPS, no radio, no conventional radar, no enhanced tracking radar, no searchlight, no radio beacons, no transponders, no weather warning radar, ......

Now, close your eyes, and repeat after me....It's okay, trust us, we're from the government. It's okay, trust us, we're from the government. It's okay, trust us, we're from the government. It's okay, trust us, we're from the government. It's okay, trust us, we're from the government. It's okay, trust us, we're from the government...

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (, November 13, 1998.

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