Airpark uses flashing pilot controller to activate flashing light on joint use taxiway

There are a number of airparks or fly-in communities around the country that allow cars on the taxiways. In a very few instances there have been problems with the two vehicles being on the same piece of pavement at the same time. The result is a collision.

One airpark has developed a warning light system so operators of cars will know when an aircraft is on the taxiway.

We use our CTAF (5 clicks to turn on, 7 off) to activate a rotating red beacon warning people not to open the electric access gate when the light is flashing. On the airport side, there’s a large railroad crossing style red light that homeowners look at to see if it’s safe to pull out of their driveways (taxiways) onto the runway (common road). The process of educating – reminding service people (UPS, propane truck, etc.) and other visitors is constant.

Our most serious problem remains unauthorized landings by people who see the numbers on our runway and can’t resist. Of course, these people don’t know about the light system. This doesn’t happen too often, but there have been a couple of close calls with vehicles.

For any who may be interested, Ramsey Electronics markets an inexpensive pilot controlled lighting receiver and switch.

The homeowners’ association says they are developing a set of rules, with explanatory FAQ’s, regarding the safety and right-of-way policies. It’s intended for the property owners – both pilots and non-pilots.

If you’ve tried any warning methods or are thinking about something, add your comments.