Temporary Flight Restriction - What is it and why it can matter
A TFR (temporary flight restriction) is defined by the FAA as the following "A Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) is a type of Notices to Airmen (NOTAM). A TFR defines an area restricted to air travel due to a hazardous condition, a special event, or a general warning for the entire FAA airspace. The text of the actual TFR contains the fine points of the restriction."
The three primary reasons that a TFR are issued are:
- Major sporting events that concentrate travel in and out of a specific area
- Natural disasters
- Emergency of national security situations
Due to the infrequency of the situations above and specifics related to geographical areas, you may travel without any impact of a TFR. However, in the case that you do, it is good to know how they operate and what the adjustments to your travel may be.
Each TFR issues specific limitations depending on what the cause is and who is impacted. our aircraft operator may be allowed to fly in or out of a location involved in a TFR if they receive a COA (certificate of waiver of authorization) that grants them permission. A worst case scenario is that your departure or arrival times may be adjusted or there would need to be a location adjustment to your itinerary. Whether the Super Bowl is in your home town, the POTUS is making a visit, or a wildfire remains unconfined and generating massive smoke plumes, ensure that your operator or aviation advisor has contingency plans and communicates appropriately so that your travel day is not ruined.