May 20, 2018

Restricted Airspace Agreement Signed

Restricted Airspace
Capt. Jason Hammond of Patuxent River Naval Air Station and St. Mary’s County Commissioner President Randy Guy shake hands after signing agreement on the coordination of use of restricted airspace in the county.

Patuxent River Naval Air Station and St. Mary’s County government have come to a formal agreement to coordinate the use of Restricted Airspace over the region. The agreement was announced in a press release from county government on April 10, 2018.

The agreement was signed at a joint meeting of the Commissioners of St. Mary’s County and the NAS Patuxent River commanding officer. It was last updated in October 2007. The new agreement calls for a review by both parties every year to evaluate how effective it is, and then determine whether changes are needed.

Pax River controls the Restricted Airspace that is adjacent to the traffic pattern of the St. Mary’s County Regional Airport. The large number of manned and unmanned aircraft that operate in the airspace mandates strict adherence to all aspects of the agreement.

“The agreement documents the need to preserve the safety of all aircraft operating in the restricted airspace of the base,” said John Deatrick, public works and transportation director for St. Mary’s County government. “This agreement reinforces the rule that to avoid conflicts with aircraft from the base, any aircraft using the St. Mary’s County Regional Airport must fly below 1,000 feet to arrive or depart through the airspace.”

If not for the agreement, operations at the St. Mary’s County airport would be severely hampered because planes would not be able to arrive and depart from the south and east.

“This is just another example of our continued partnership with NAS Pax River,” said Mr. Guy. “Both St. Mary’s County and Pax River work hard each and every day to ensure the safety of aircraft and pilots using the St. Mary’s County Regional Airport.”

The agreement also explicitly details the county’s responsibility to properly brief all pilots who use the airport about the restrictions.

To learn more about Lexington Park, visit the St. Mary’s County Community Development Corporation’s Leader member page.

St. Mary’s County Community Development Corporation

46940 South Shangri-La Drive, Suite 7

Lexington Park, MD 20653

301-863-7700

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