Pilot's tip of the week

Airports With “RP”


Subscriber question:

"On VFR sectional charts, some airports have the letters 'RP' under the airport information. What does this mean?" - Cristina E.


“RP in the airport information on the sectional indicates that a right traffic pattern is used at this airport. Runways requiring the use of the right pattern are listed after the RP.

An example would be RP 32, meaning that a right pattern is in use on Runway 32. If an RP is not noted, it is assumed that the traffic pattern is a left pattern.

This information can also be found in the Airport/Facility Directory (U.S. Chart Supplements) and is shown on some airport surfaces by a segmented circle.

It is interesting to note that helicopters typically use a right pattern at airports which have a defined left pattern, since FAR Part 91 requires helicopters to avoid the flow of fixed wing traffic.”

Note: A description of segmented circles and traffic pattern indicators can be found in Chapter 7 of the Airplane Flying Handbook.

How do you access VFR sectional charts in the cockpit?

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