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Departures (12)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
QFA173 KLAX YBBN Enroute 1636
AUA82 KLAX LOWW Enroute 1827
CFG2081 KLAX EDDF Enroute 1830
ASA503 KLAX KSEA Enroute 0524
UAL551 KLAX KAUS Enroute 1619
JBU2885 KLAX KMIA Enroute 1726
AAL1977 KLAX KMIA Enroute 1919
CAO3106 KLAX ZBAA Arriving
AAL905 KLAX SKRG Enroute 2157
QFA007 KLAX YSSY Enroute 0506
SWA1345 KLAX KABQ Enroute 1600
SWA3055 KLAX KOAK Enroute 1600

Arrivals (20)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
SVA041 OEJN KLAX Enroute 0146
LOT21 EPWA KLAX Enroute 1045
JBU2123 KJFK KLAX Enroute 0248
ASA866 PHNL KLAX Enroute 0022
ASA250 MMPR KLAX Enroute 0143
SPK286 KSEA KLAX Enroute 0142
WJA1696 CYVR KLAX Enroute 0215
DAL440 NZAA KLAX Enroute 2131
SWA1282 KDAL KLAX Enroute 0245
CKS369 PHNL KLAX Enroute 2336
DAL1445 KDFW KLAX Enroute 0142
MLISHS1 KAMA KLAX Enroute 0108
NKS561 KLAS KLAX Enroute 0227
NKS1545 KLAS KLAX Enroute 0143
SWA2819 KLAS KLAX Enroute 1600
FCY241 KMSP KLAX Enroute 1917
FDX1402 KATL KLAX Departing
CAL6 RCTP KLAX Departing
GLJM KONT KLAX Enroute 1600
ANZ6 NZAA KLAX Enroute 2208

Los Angeles (SoCal) 32

Departures (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
GLJM KONT KLAX Enroute 1600

Arrivals (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
TKK837 VHHH KONT Enroute 0115

Empire (SoCal) 2

Departures (6)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
UAL1165 KSAN PHNL Enroute 2311
UAL2508 KSAN KSTL Enroute 1728
ASA579 KSAN KSEA Enroute 0703
SWA5230 KSAN KMSY Enroute 1840
WAT1812 KSAN KSFO Enroute 0320
FFT28P KSAN KPHX Enroute 1600

Arrivals (2)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
DLH5Y EDDM KSAN Enroute 0614
ASA783 KPDX KSAN Enroute 0259

San Diego (SoCal) 8

Departures (2)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
BOXER22 KSLI KLSV Enroute 1600
SWA763 KSNA MMPR Enroute 1600

Arrivals (3)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
SWA1 KPHX KSNA Enroute 0203
DAL2151 KDTW KLGB Enroute 0426
SWA2640 KPHX KSNA Enroute 0211

Coast (SoCal) 5

Departures (2)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
SWA2624 KBUR KSJC Enroute 0220
SWA2602 KBUR KLAS Enroute 0131

Arrivals (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
SWA1150 KSJC KBUR Enroute 0133

Burbank (SoCal) 3

Departures (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
SWA2129 KPSP KOAK Enroute 0757

Arrivals (2)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
SWA1412 KDEN KPSP Enroute 1512
N1M KMDW KPSP Departing

Palm Springs (SoCal) 3

Departures (6)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
FFT2136 KLAS KDFW Enroute 1703
NKS486 KLAS KSEA Enroute 1408
NKS561 KLAS KLAX Enroute 0227
NKS1545 KLAS KLAX Enroute 0143
SWA1424 KLAS KSEA Enroute 1600
SWA2819 KLAS KLAX Enroute 1600

Arrivals (4)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
ASA1366 KPDX KLAS Enroute 0200
SWA2602 KBUR KLAS Enroute 0131
NWA1193 KDTW KLAS Departing
SWA1404 KSMF KLAS Enroute 0127

Las Vegas 10

Departures (2)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
MNF50 KLSV LKPR Enroute 2245
AFS1000 KLSV KVPS Enroute 1710

Arrivals (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
BOXER22 KSLI KLSV Enroute 1600

Nellis 3
  • Flights To/From ZLA: 66
  • Flights in ZLA Airspace: 20
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    May 25th, 2022

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    Left Turn ORCKA

    LAX is one of the busiest airports on VATSIM, both for controllers and pilots. Since it is such a heavily trafficked airport on VATSIM and in the real world, there are many departure and arrival procedures that are used to expedite the flow of traffic. Of these departures, the ORCKA departure, is both very commonly included in flight plans, and prone to some mistakes. By writing this, I hope to clear up some confusion caused by the unique departure procedure and the cluttered plate.

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    Let’s start by looking at the departure, shown here first using the FAA plate.

     

    Despite what the lines may appear to show, pilots must not proceed to KLIPR after crossing their runway’s respective RNAV fix.

    This is not the complete procedure, simply the first page. We can see on the bottom the plate that there is a second page for us to look at. Additionally, we should know that dotted lines on a procedure indicate what pilots should do during a Lost Communications scenario. The second page, which describes how to fly the departure in text, is much more enlightening than this first page. For the south complex (runways 25R and 25L) it says, “... cross DOCKR (25R) or HIPPR (25L) at or below 3000, then on heading 236 or as assigned by ATC,” and for the north complex (runways 24R and 24L) “...cross FABRA (24R) or DLREY (24L) at or below 3000, then on heading 251 or as assigned by ATC.”

    That last part seems to trip the most pilots up, “then on heading <> or as assigned by ATC.” This means that, if flying by hand, simply fly the heading on the departure until ATC gives you a turn direct to KLIPR, then resume the departure from there (on to KEGGS and so on). It seems far more often pilots let the FMC dictate where they go, which while not an issue generally can cause problems when programmed incorrectly. Specifically, with the deletion of “VECTORS” legs and the removal of discontinuities therein. In order for the FMC to properly fly the departure, it is imperative that the “VECTORS” leg be left intact. Such a leg will keep your airplane flying the correct heading until ATC gives you a turn.

    Let’s work through this with a scenario. I will be using the Zibo 737-800 mod for XPlane 11 as an example.

    You are N12345, flying from LAX to LAS. Clearance delivery has cleared you on the ORCKA5 departure, MISEN transition, climb via SID except maintain 5000. Loading the departure into the flight plan, you are greeted with this.

     

    4b236587da2295c20cfbc3aacbbcd01a1438e0c7.png

     

    As we can see, there is the 640’ crossing, from which we navigate to DOCKR at or below 3000. After, the “VECTOR” leg mentioned earlier is shown. It is absolutely imperative that pilots do not delete this leg. As shown, the vector leg is on a heading of 236, as published on the departure. The same is true for the north runways, but on a heading of 251.

    But what if your FMC does not have this VECTORS leg present? If after ensuring that there hasn’t been a mistake in loading the departure, and that your navdata is up to date and the leg still isn’t present, simply fly using heading. The two ways of doing this (with or without autopilot engaged) is to fly in LNAV mode until DOCKR and then switch to heading mode, or to use heading mode from the start. While the latter option does not legally fly the RNAV departure, it is fairly accurate for sim reasons, as real aircraft would not have this issue when loading the departure.

    You start up and taxi out to runway 25R. Tower tells you “N12345 RNAV DOCKR wind calm runway 25R cleared for takeoff.” Throttles go up, airspeed builds, and you takeoff. Per the departure “climb on heading 251 to 640 feet, then climb direct to cross DOCKR at or below 3000.” Up you go, passing through 640’ easily, and onto DOCKR.

    Contacting departure, the controller says “N12345 radar contact, altitude as reported, climb via ORCKA5 departure.” Now what? Simple, continue flying the departure. After DOCKR, begin the vectors leg, in this case on heading 236. The “climb via SID” part of the instruction simply means you can ignore the “except maintain 5000” from the initial clearance on the ground. To what altitude? FL230, shown on the bottom right of the Jeppesen chart and top middle of the FAA charts, complying with altitude restrictions. In short order, the controller will issue an instruction for you to rejoin the departure at KLIPR, either with another assigned heading or a vector directly to the fix.

    To briefly summarize, the ORCKA departure is frequently flown incorrectly, causing loss of separation issues at LAX. This can be attributed to some misinformation floating around online about deleting VECTORS legs in flight plans, and confusing charting on FAA departure plates. Ensure that the VECTORS leg is present in your FMC when loading the departure into the FMC. If it is not present, simply fly either manually or using the heading mode present in almost all autopilots manufactured in the last 70 years.

    I hope this has been informative, and I look forward to seeing you all in the virtual skies!