Reno Air Racing
Blue ribbon panel to study possible changes to ensure safety
CITING AN OVERWHELMING DESIRE by the aviation, aviation racing, and local communities, the Reno Air Racing Association
(RARA) is moving forward with plans to hold the 49th Reno
National Air Races September 12-16, 2012, at Stead Airport,
said Mike Houghton, RARA president and CEO.
With several sponsors, fans, and victims of last year’s accident in attendance, Houghton said the association is in the
process of acquiring the permits and FAA waivers required
to hold the event, which was cut short last year by the crash
of Jimmy Leeward’s Galloping Ghost Unlimited P- 51 that
resulted in 11 deaths and more than 70 injuries.
“We’re moving ahead,” Houghton said. He called last
year’s crash—the first ever at Reno that resulted in the death
MANUFACTURING OF 121. 5 MHZ ELTS TO END
THE FAA HAS PUBLISHED a notice that will cancel the TSO that
governs manufacturing of ELTs operating on 121. 5 MHz.
That means that once the TSO is canceled, probably later
this year, no new models of 121. 5 MHz ELTs can be
All existing units can continue to be used, as can normally
functioning “yellow-tagged” 121. 5 MHz ELTs and new 121. 5
MHz ELTs manufactured to the current ELT TSO. Also,
pilots continue to be authorized by FAR 91.207 to use either a
121. 5 MHz or 406 MHz ELT.
of spectators—a terrible tragedy that “will
not become the concluding epilogue of
the historic Reno National Air Races.” As
plans for the event proceed, an appointed
blue ribbon panel of aviation experts will
study all aspects of the races—both on
and off the pylon course—to determine
what can be done in the area of safety.
If for any reason it is determined that
the air races cannot be held, Houghton
said an alternative aviation event and
memorial tribute to the 2011 victims
would be organized.
The cancellation of the 121. 5 MHz ELT
TSO is one more firm indication that the
FAA is fully committed to the international
standard locator operating on 406 MHz. A
number of countries around the world
already require the higher frequency ELT
that transmits the identification and GPS-derived location of the ELT. Satellites in
orbit can receive the 406 MHz signal for
rapid location of the emergency signal.