(a) General. Unless otherwise authorized or required by the ATC
facility having jurisdiction over the Class D airspace area, each person
operating an aircraft in Class D airspace must comply with the applicable
provisions of this section. In addition, each person must comply with
§§91.126 and 91.127. For the purpose of this section, the primary airport
is the airport for which the Class D airspace area is designated. A
satellite airport is any other airport within the Class D airspace area.
(b) Deviations. An operator may deviate from any provision of
this section under the provisions of an ATC authorization issued by the
ATC facility having jurisdiction over the airspace concerned. ATC may
authorize a deviation on a continuing basis or for an individual flight,
(c) Communications. Each person operating an aircraft in Class D
airspace must meet the following two-way radio communications
(1) Arrival or through flight. Each person must establish
two-way radio communications with the ATC facility (including foreign ATC
in the case of foreign airspace designated in the United States) providing
air traffic services prior to entering that airspace and thereafter
maintain those communications while within that airspace.
(2) Departing flight. Each person --
(i) From the primary airport or satellite airport with an operating
control tower must establish and maintain two-way radio communications
with the control tower, and thereafter as instructed by ATC while
operating in the Class D airspace area; or
(ii) From a satellite airport without an operating control tower, must
establish and maintain two-way radio communications with the ATC facility
having jurisdiction over the Class D airspace area as soon as practicable
(d) Communications failure. Each person who operates an aircraft
in a Class D airspace area must maintain two-way radio communications with
the ATC facility having jurisdiction over that area.
(1) If the aircraft radio fails in flight under IFR, the pilot must
comply with §91.185 of the part.
(2) If the aircraft radio fails in flight under VFR, the pilot in
command may operate that aircraft and land if --
(i) Weather conditions are at or above basic VFR weather minimums;
(ii) Visual contact with the tower is maintained; and
(iii) A clearance to land is received.
(e) Minimum Altitudes. When operating to an airport in Class D
airspace, each pilot of --
(1) A large or turbine-powered airplane shall, unless otherwise
required by the applicable distance from cloud criteria, enter the traffic
pattern at an altitude of at least 1,500 feet above the elevation of the
airport and maintain at least 1,500 feet until further descent is required
for a safe landing;
(2) A large or turbine-powered airplane approaching to land on a runway
served by an instrument landing system (ILS), if the airplane is ILS
equipped, shall fly that airplane at an altitude at or above the glide
slope between the outer marker (or point of interception of glide slope,
if compliance with the applicable distance from cloud criteria requires
interception closer in) and the middle marker; and
(3) An airplane approaching to land on a runway served by a visual
approach slope indicator shall maintain an altitude at or above the glide
slope until a lower altitude is necessary for a safe landing.
Paragraphs (e)(2) and (e)(3) of this section do not prohibit normal
bracketing maneuvers above or below the glide slope that are conducted for
the purpose of remaining on the glide slope.
(f) Approaches. Except when conducting a circling approach under
part 97 of this chapter or unless otherwise required by ATC, each pilot
(1) Circle the airport to the left, if operating an airplane; or
(2) Avoid the flow of fixed-wing aircraft, if operating a helicopter.
(g) Departures. No person may operate an aircraft departing from
an airport except in compliance with the following:
(1) Each pilot must comply with any departure procedures established
for that airport by the FAA.
(2) Unless otherwise required by the prescribed departure procedure for
that airport or the applicable distance from clouds criteria, each pilot
of a turbine-powered airplane and each pilot of a large airplane must
climb to an altitude of 1,500 feet above the surface as rapidly as
(h) Noise abatement. Where a formal runway use program has been
established by the FAA, each pilot of a large or turbine-powered airplane
assigned a noise abatement runway by ATC must use that runway. However,
consistent with the final authority of the pilot in command concerning the
safe operation of the aircraft as prescribed in §91.3(a), ATC may assign a
different runway if requested by the pilot in the interest of safety.
(i) Takeoff, landing, taxi clearance. No person may, at any
airport with an operating control tower, operate an aircraft on a runway
or taxiway, or take off or land an aircraft, unless an appropriate
clearance is received from ATC. A clearance to "taxi to" the takeoff
runway assigned to the aircraft is not a clearance to cross that assigned
takeoff runway, or to taxi on that runway at any point, but is a clearance
to cross other runways that intersect the taxi route to that assigned
takeoff runway. A clearance to "taxi to" any point other than an assigned
takeoff runway is clearance to cross all runways that intersect the taxi
route to that point.