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Arrival Procedures


The aircraft on the offset course approach must see the runway-landing environment and, if ATC
has advised that traffic on the straight-in approach is a factor, the offset course approach aircraft
must visually acquire the straight-in approach aircraft and report it in sight to ATC prior to reach-
ing the DA for the offset course approach.


The Clear of Clouds point is the position on the offset final approach course where aircraft
first operate in visual meteorological conditions below the ceiling, when the actual weather
conditions are at, or near, the minimum ceiling for SOIA operations. Ceiling is defined by the
Aeronautical Information Manual.


SOIA PRM approaches utilize the same dual

communications procedures as do other PRM


At KSFO, pilots conducting SOIA operations select the
monitor frequency audio when communicating with the
final radar controller, not the tower controller as is
customary. In this special case, the monitor controller’s
transmissions, if required, override the final controller’s
frequency. This procedure is addressed on the AAUP.


SOIA utilizes the same AAUP format as

do other PRM approaches. The minimum weather
conditions that are required are listed. Because of the
more complex nature of instructions for conducting
SOIA approaches, the “Runway Specific” items are
more numerous and lengthy.


Examples of SOIA offset runway specific



Aircraft must remain on the offset

course until passing the offset MAP prior to
maneuvering to align with the centerline of the offset
approach runway. 


Pilots are authorized to continue past

the offset MAP to align with runway centerline when:


the straight

−in approach traffic is in

sight and is expected to remain in sight,


ATC has been advised that “traffic is

in sight.” (ATC is not required to acknowledge this


the runway environment is in sight.

Otherwise, a missed approach must be executed.
Between the offset MAP and the runway threshold,
pilots conducting the offset PRM approach must not
pass the straight

−in aircraft and are responsible for

separating themselves visually from traffic conduct-
ing the straight

−in PRM approach to the adjacent

runway, which means maneuvering the aircraft as
necessary to avoid that traffic until landing, and

providing wake turbulence avoidance, if applicable.
Pilots maintaining visual separation should advise
ATC, as soon as practical, if visual contact with the
aircraft conducting the straight

−in PRM approach is

lost and execute a missed approach unless otherwise
instructed by ATC.


Examples of SOIA straight

−in runway

specific notes:


To facilitate the offset aircraft in

providing wake mitigation, pilots should descend on,
not above, the glideslope/glidepath.


Conducting the straight

−in approach,

pilots should be aware that the aircraft conducting the
offset approach will be approaching from the
right/left rear and will be operating in close proximity
to the straight

−in aircraft.

7. Recap.

The following are differences between widely spaced
simultaneous approaches (at least 4,300 feet between
the runway centerlines) and Simultaneous PRM close
parallel approaches which are of importance to the pi-

(a) Runway Spacing.

 Prior to PRM simulta-

neous close parallel approaches, most ATC


breakouts were the result of two aircraft in

−trail on

the same final approach course getting too close
together. Two aircraft going in the same direction did
not mandate quick reaction times. With PRM closely
spaced approaches, two aircraft could be alongside
each other, navigating on courses that are separated
by less than 4,300 feet and as close as 3,000 feet. In
the unlikely event that an aircraft “blunders” off its
course and makes a worst case turn of 30 degrees
toward the adjacent final approach course, closing
speeds of 135 feet per second could occur that
constitute the need for quick reaction. A blunder has
to be recognized by the monitor controller, and
breakout instructions issued to the endangered
aircraft. The pilot will not have any warning that a