[Note in progress]
This research note is for those interested in organizing balloon and kite mapping workshops in Canada. Particularly in the Greater Vancouver area, aerial mappers will need to be aware of sea planes and air traffic in the air space above the city. Here are some recommendations on how to safely and legally fly recreational kites and balloons from NAV Canada, a private company that owns and operates Canada's civil air navigation services. This note is based on research by Vancouver organizer Melissa Nunes.
NOTE: If Kite or Balloon flying are issues in your area, you can always resort to pole mapping.
What is a NOTAM:
NOTAM stands for A Notice to Airmen and is a notification to pilots before a flight, advising them of circumstances related to the state of flying.
When to issue a NOTAM:
Flying a kite at a location where it is not hazardous to aviation safety or not likely to be hazardous to aviation safety is considered a recreational activity and a NOTAM can be issued.
Issue NOTAM at least 5 hours before the beginning of the activity and no more than 48 hours in advance. Information should be forwarded to the closest Flight Information Centre (FIC) at 1-866-WXBRIEF.
NOTAM information required:
- type of activity
- area of activity (radius, co-ordinates, and preferably distance and direction from nearest aerodrome, or bearing and distance from a NAVAID
- the maximum altitude above mean sea level (MSL) at which the activity will be conducted
- times of the activity (in Universal Coordinated Time).
This information is found in the Canadian NOTAM Procedures Manual, section 5.5.12 (Recreational Activities) available here.