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Departures (22)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
JAL61 KLAX RJAA Enroute 0303
AFR2857 KLAX LFPG Enroute 0408
THY10 KLAX LTFM Enroute 1204
AFR23 KLAX LFPG Enroute 0708
AAL134 KLAX EGLL Enroute 1100
SWA312 KLAX KDEN Enroute 1257
N700CP KLAX KLAS Enroute 2212
UAL511 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1632
QFA94 KLAX YMML Enroute 1640
AAL1847 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1927
AAL73 KLAX YSSY Enroute 0433
RPC2263 KLAX CYVR Enroute 2136
NKS2699 KLAX KLAS Enroute 2046
DAL7321 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1600
SWA361 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1157
DAL361 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1135
SWA314 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1447
KLM20J KLAX EHAM Enroute 1600
NKS2348 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1600
ANA780 KLAX RJTT Enroute 1600
SWA265 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1244
NKS326 KLAX KIAH Enroute 1600

Arrivals (22)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
AFR20 LFPG KLAX Enroute 1708
TAM8086 SBGR KLAX Enroute 0923
CPA880B VHHH KLAX Enroute 1303
UAL28 KORD KLAX Enroute 1600
AAL960 KMIA KLAX Enroute 1121
NKS1786 KORD KLAX Enroute 1248
UAL71P KDEN KLAX Enroute 1340
DAL3703 KGEG KLAX Enroute 1322
N9099C KSAN KLAX Enroute 0245
AAL950 KMIA KLAX Enroute 1116
DAL317 PHNL KLAX Enroute 1028
UAL1413 KLAS KLAX Enroute 0800
N74H KLAS KLAX Enroute 1503
SWA2615 KABQ KLAX Enroute 1205
AAL960A KMIA KLAX Enroute 1107
EVA6 RCTP KLAX Enroute 1818
DAL1625 KSAN KLAX Enroute 1504
UAL429 KSAN KLAX Enroute 1419
UAL5390 KSMF KLAX Enroute 0654
UAL424 KLAS KLAX Enroute 1600
AAL1641 KDFW KLAX Departing
PAL102 RPLL KLAX Enroute 1105

Los Angeles (SoCal) 44

Departures (2)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
N3558E KAJO KSNA Enroute 1600
UAL560 KONT KLAS Enroute 1857

Arrivals (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
ASA1234 PAFA KONT Enroute 1106

Empire (SoCal) 3

Departures (13)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
EAL769 KSAN KSFO Enroute 1600
ASA1061 KSAN KSJC Enroute 1600
N9099C KSAN KLAX Enroute 0245
FDX1839 KSAN KOAK Enroute 1214
N7634A KSAN Enroute 2319
N447DA KSAN Enroute 1626
DAL1625 KSAN KLAX Enroute 1504
UAL429 KSAN KLAX Enroute 1419
FFT2084 KSAN KPHX Enroute 1600
FFT2126 KSAN KLAS Enroute 0651
SCX599 KSAN PANC Enroute 1600
SWA4621 KSAN KDEN Enroute 0318
AC320 KSAN KTUS Enroute 1600

Arrivals (4)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
HAL58 PHNL KSAN Enroute 1451
NKS4569 KSTL KSAN Enroute 1451
UAL2309 KDEN KSAN Enroute 0622
SWA1704 KTUS KSAN Enroute 1059

San Diego (SoCal) 17

Departures (2)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
UAL1403 KSNA KSFO Enroute 1727
JSX603 KSNA KLAS Enroute 1413

Arrivals (2)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
EJA393 KMCO KSNA Enroute 1049
N3558E KAJO KSNA Enroute 1600

Coast (SoCal) 4

Arrivals (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
HAWK2 KWVI KBUR Enroute 1600

Burbank (SoCal) 1

Departures (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
XALEO KPSP KLAS Enroute 2350

Arrivals (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
ROU1735 CYYZ KPSP Enroute 1218

Palm Springs (SoCal) 2

Departures (5)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
GTI3627 KLAS KCVG Arriving
DAL525 KLAS KTUS Enroute 1157
UAL1413 KLAS KLAX Enroute 0800
N74H KLAS KLAX Enroute 1503
UAL424 KLAS KLAX Enroute 1600

Arrivals (16)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
UAL2344 KSFO KLAS Enroute 1225
N700CP KLAX KLAS Enroute 2212
UAL511 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1632
AAL1847 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1927
SWA4952 KOAK KLAS Enroute 1600
XALEO KPSP KLAS Enroute 2350
NKS2699 KLAX KLAS Enroute 2046
DAL7321 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1600
SWA361 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1157
DAL361 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1135
SWA314 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1447
JSX603 KSNA KLAS Enroute 1413
FFT2126 KSAN KLAS Enroute 0651
UAL560 KONT KLAS Enroute 1857
NKS2348 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1600
SWA265 KLAX KLAS Enroute 1244

Las Vegas 21

Departures (1)

Callsign Dep Arr Status ETA
JTL624 KPMD KHOT Enroute 0310

Palmdale 1
  • Flights To/From ZLA: 93
  • Flights in ZLA Airspace: 46
  • Controller Schedule

    July 15th, 2024

    Socal Approach (West)
    Justin Nguyen

    Session with EY

    1500 - 1630 PDT / 2200 - 2330 Zulu

    The Art of the Timely Handoff

    As a controller, one of the easiest things you can do to improve your life and that of your fellow controllers is to work on timely handoffs. Nearly every controller will find him or herself guilty of holding onto an aircraft too long. The result can range from delays at the runway to airspace busts or go-arounds, but it is almost always bad for everyone involved.

    So, when should you hand an aircraft off to the next controller? As soon as you no longer need to talk to the aircraft. It really is as simple as that. If there is nothing more you anticipate needing to say to a pilot, hand them off to the next controller or approve a frequency change if there’s not a “next” controller.

    Let us look at a couple of practical examples, starting with LA Ground.

    LA Ground

    As a ground controller, your primary mission is the safe and efficient movement of aircraft around the airport. For our purposes, that means not crashing airplanes into one another, and getting them to the correct location on the airport. The biggest opportunity you will have to elevate your handoffs while working LA Ground is when aircraft are taxiing from Terminals 4 through 8 to Runway 25R.

    First and foremost, make sure the pilot is on the correct taxiway and headed in the correct direction (the green arrow in the diagram below). Pilots may be unfamiliar with the field or get disoriented, so it is important to make sure they’re going where you want them to go and that they won’t get lost.

    Secondly, you want to make sure that there are no conflicts with other aircraft, which would most likely take the form of an aircraft coming out of the “Box” or one of the cargo/GA pads north of the 25R departure end (the orange boxes). Absent any potential conflicts from those areas, there is no reason you shouldn’t advise the pilot to contact Tower (or the controller staffing that position) as the aircraft approaches C5 (the yellow circle) or, at the latest, C3 (the red circle).

    146568dc7d5353afb3c4a6f9eb85811307432817.png

    There are numerous operational advantages for all parties involved. As the Ground controller, you relieve yourself of the burden of remembering to hand off the aircraft later. Anyone who has received an annoyed transmission from a pilot or message from a Tower controller can relate to this. Additionally, pilots may switch to Tower on their own. This is quite common in the real world but can result in confusion when on VATSIM.

    From the pilot’s perspective, an early handoff makes better use of their time. It is also important to remember that a handoff isn’t instantaneous. The pilot’s workload may not allow for them to switch over immediately, so build in time for that to happen.

    Additionally, by giving the Tower controller (or the radar controller providing Tower services) more time with the aircraft, you open up a wealth of options: intersection departures, takeoff clearances without the aircraft coming to a stop, and more.

    Now let us look at a radar example but stay in the area of KLAX.

    SoCal Departure

    Working a departure position (be it sectorized or as part of a larger area of responsibility) is an excellent example of both needing a timely handoff from Tower (remember Tower controllers: as soon as you see the altitude block increment, ship ‘em to Departure!) and wanting to ensure a timely handoff to Center. Let’s look at everyone’s favorite example, the ORCKA 5 departure out of KLAX.

    2017900fcc4927233cd785e0ddf698d2c0960559.png

    As the Departure controller, you’re going to still be focused on the same two tasks as earlier: the safe and efficient movement of the aircraft. In this instance, we of course want to prevent loss of separation – that’s our top priority. Secondly, we want to make sure the traffic departs the terminal area efficiently and gets headed toward its ultimate destination. No one on the ORKCA5 is looking to fly heading 251 or 236 a minute longer than they must.

    After establishing radar contact with the departing aircraft, your first instruction will likely involve canceling the restriction that they stop their climb at 5,000 feet. This is accomplished either through “climb and maintain one-three thousand” or “climb via the ORCKA Five departure” if you still need compliance with the published crossing restrictions.

    The next instruction (provided you didn’t have to correct an erroneous pilot) will likely be the left turn back toward KLIPR. This instruction is usually provided as the aircraft is climbing through 5,000 feet, which serves two purposes. One, by observing the climb through 5,000 feet, you’ve verified the aircraft has correctly canceled the restriction they received on the ground to level off at 5,000. Secondly, at that point they are over halfway to their vertical goal of crossing KLIPR at or above 10,000 feet and can start the turn.

    Looking ahead on the SID, you’ll notice things progress quickly and if left unmonitored, an aircraft climbing via the SID can climb out of your airspace in little time. So, let us review our checklist:

    • Is the aircraft clear of conflict? Is there going to be a loss of separation?
    • Is the aircraft complying with your vertical instruction to climb above 5,000 feet?
    • Is the aircraft complying with your lateral instruction to make the LEFT TURN direct KLIPR?

    If these criteria are met, it’s time to initiate the handoff to the next controller. Even though your airspace goes all the way up to 13,000 feet, you gain nothing by holding onto the aircraft. And you run the very real risk of forgetting about the aircraft and a) having it level off at 13,000, or b) having it bust through your airspace if it’s climbing via the SID (note: the ORCKA5 has a top altitude of FL230).

    Adding to the delay in the handoff from a pilot’s perspective of changing frequencies, you also now need to consider the delay in the next controller seeing your handoff. By building in this extra time, you give everyone more breathing room while also freeing up your resources for the next pilot who just took off. And you never know, that next one could be someone trying a right-turn off the deck toward KLIPR – you’ll be glad you made things easier on yourself.

    Conclusion

    Ultimately, there is no reason to hold onto an aircraft until they are right at the end of your airspace or jurisdiction. You do not increase your level of interaction with the traffic, and you do not increase safety or efficiency. All you risk doing is causing undue delays or worse, a loss of separation. Keep in mind, this is a lesson that applies at every controller position, from Ground to Center, and most controllers would benefit from being more proactive with their handoffs.