Canadian Aviation Regulations (SOR/96-433)

Regulations are current to 2017-03-20 and last amended on 2017-01-01. Previous Versions

[602.107 to 602.113 reserved]

Division VI — Visual Flight Rules

Minimum Visual Meteorological Conditions for VFR Flight in Controlled Airspace

 No person shall operate an aircraft in VFR flight within controlled airspace unless

  • (a) the aircraft is operated with visual reference to the surface;

  • (b) flight visibility is not less than three miles;

  • (c) the distance of the aircraft from cloud is not less than 500 feet vertically and one mile horizontally; and

  • (d) where the aircraft is operated within a control zone,

    • (i) when reported, ground visibility is not less than three miles, and

    • (ii) except when taking off or landing, the distance of the aircraft from the surface is not less than 500 feet.

Minimum Visual Meteorological Conditions for VFR Flight in Uncontrolled Airspace

 No person shall operate an aircraft in VFR flight within uncontrolled airspace unless

  • (a) the aircraft is operated with visual reference to the surface;

  • (b) where the aircraft is operated at or above 1,000 feet AGL

    • (i) during the day, flight visibility is not less than one mile,

    • (ii) during the night, flight visibility is not less than three miles, and

    • (iii) in either case, the distance of the aircraft from cloud is not less than 500 feet vertically and 2,000 feet horizontally;

  • (c) where the aircraft is not a helicopter and is operated at less than 1,000 feet AGL

    • (i) during the day, flight visibility is not less than two miles, except if otherwise authorized in an air operator certificate,

    • (ii) during the night, flight visibility is not less than three miles, and

    • (iii) in either case, the aircraft is operated clear of cloud; and

  • (d) where the aircraft is a helicopter and is operated at less than 1,000 feet AGL

    • (i) during the day, flight visibility is not less than one mile, except if otherwise authorized in an air operator certificate or a flight training unit operator certificate — helicopter,

    • (ii) during the night, flight visibility is not less than three miles, and

    • (iii) in either case, the aircraft is operated clear of cloud.

  • SOR/2014-131, s. 14.

VFR Over-the-Top

 Notwithstanding paragraphs 602.114(a) and 602.115(a), an aircraft may be operated in VFR OTT flight during the cruise portion of the flight during the day if

  • (a) the aircraft is operated at a vertical distance from cloud of at least 1,000 feet;

  • (b) where the aircraft is operated between two cloud layers, the vertical distance between the layers is at least 5,000 feet;

  • (c) flight visibility at the cruising altitude of the aircraft is at least five miles; and

  • (d) the weather at the aerodrome of destination is forecast to have a sky condition of scattered cloud or clear and a ground visibility of five miles or greater with no forecast of precipitation, fog, thunderstorms or blowing snow, and those conditions are forecast to exist

    • (i) where the forecast is an aerodrome forecast (TAF), for the period from one hour before to two hours after the estimated time of arrival; and

    • (ii) where an aerodrome forecast (TAF) is not available and the forecast is an area forecast (FA), for the period from one hour before to three hours after the estimated time of arrival.

Special VFR Flight

  •  (1) Notwithstanding paragraph 602.114(b), an aircraft may be operated in special VFR flight within a control zone if

    • (a) weather conditions preclude compliance with paragraph 602.114(b);

    • (b) flight visibility is not less than

      • (i) one mile, where the aircraft is not a helicopter, or

      • (ii) one-half mile, where the aircraft is a helicopter;

    • (c) the aircraft is operated clear of cloud and with visual reference to the surface at all times; and

    • (d) authorization to do so has been requested and obtained from the appropriate air traffic control unit.

  • (2) Where aerodrome traffic permits, an air traffic control unit shall authorize a pilot-in-command to operate an aircraft in special VFR flight within a control zone if

    • (a) the pilot-in-command requests authorization to operate the aircraft in special VFR flight;

    • (b) when reported, ground visibility within the control zone is not less than

      • (i) one mile, where the aircraft is not a helicopter, or

      • (ii) one-half mile, where the aircraft is a helicopter;

    • (c) the aircraft is equipped with radiocommunication equipment capable of maintaining communication with the appropriate air traffic control unit; and

    • (d) the aircraft is not a helicopter and is operated during the night, and the authorization is for the purpose of allowing the aircraft to land at the destination aerodrome.

  • SOR/2006-77, s. 11.

[602.118 to 602.120 reserved]

Division VII — Instrument Flight Rules

General Requirements

  •  (1) No pilot-in-command shall operate an aircraft in IMC in any class of airspace, except in accordance with IFR.

  • (2) No pilot-in-command of an aircraft shall conduct an IFR flight within controlled airspace unless the aircraft is operated in accordance with an air traffic control clearance pursuant to section 602.31.

Alternate Aerodrome Requirements

 Except as otherwise authorized by the Minister in an air operator certificate or in a special authorization issued under subsection 604.05(2), no pilot-in-command shall operate an aircraft in IFR flight unless the IFR flight plan or IFR flight itinerary that has been filed for the flight under section 602.73 includes an alternate aerodrome having a landing area suitable for use by that aircraft.

  • SOR/2014-131, s. 15.

Alternate Aerodrome Weather Minima

 No pilot-in-command of an aircraft shall include an alternate aerodrome in an IFR flight plan or IFR flight itinerary unless available weather information indicates that the ceiling and visibility at the alternate aerodrome will, at the expected time of arrival, be at or above the alternate aerodrome weather minima specified in the Canada Air Pilot.

Minimum Altitudes to Ensure Obstacle Clearance

  •  (1) Subject to subsections (2) and (3), the pilot-in-command of an IFR aircraft shall, except when taking off or landing, or when being radar-vectored by an air traffic control unit, ensure that the aircraft is operated at or above

    • (a) the MOCA, when the aircraft is on an airway or air route; and

    • (b) the minimum altitude established by the Minister to ensure obstacle clearance and specified on an IFR chart, when the aircraft is within airspace in respect of which such a minimum altitude has been established.

  • (2) When an aircraft referred to in subsection (1) is not being operated on an airway or air route or within airspace in respect of which a minimum altitude referred to in paragraph (1)(b) has been established, the pilot-in-command shall ensure that the aircraft is operated at or above

    • (a) an altitude of 1,000 feet above the highest obstacle located within a horizontal distance of five nautical miles from the estimated position of the aircraft in flight;

    • (b) in a region designated as a mountainous region in the Designated Airspace Handbook and identified therein as area 1 or 5, an altitude of 2,000 feet above the highest obstacle within a horizontal distance of five nautical miles from the estimated position of the aircraft in flight; and

    • (c) in a region designated as a mountainous region in the Designated Airspace Handbook and identified therein as area 2, 3 or 4, an altitude of 1,500 feet above the highest obstacle within a horizontal distance of five nautical miles from the estimated position of the aircraft in flight.

  • (3) If aviation safety would be at risk as a result of the presence of obstacles to air navigation, the Minister may issue a NOTAM that establishes a higher minimum altitude requirement than that referred to in subsection (1) or (2).

 
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