Pilot's tip of the week

What’s a Graphic ODP?

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Subscriber question:

"Why are some obstacle departure procedures charted? They don't seem to match the map depictions on my EFB, either, which seems odd if it's charted." — Milo C.

John:

“When an instrument approach is initially developed for an airport, the need for an Obstacle Departure Procedure, or ODP, is assessed. If needed, an ODP is developed for the airport. The ODP may be either textual or graphic. 

Textual ODPs, as the name implies, are those listed in textual form. They are usually fairly simple: Fly a heading, or course, to an altitude before turning on course.

Graphic ODPs are charted when it would be too complicated to describe them textually. All RNAV ODPs are also in graphic format. Graphic ODPs are depicted the same way as SIDs but include the word ‘(OBSTACLE)’ in the name. You can file a graphic ODP in your flight plan the same way you would for a SID.

Because they aren’t necessarily drawn to scale, you can’t overlay a graphic ODP on the enroute chart as you can with an approach chart in flight planning software. But you can add the fixes to the flight plan. Just be aware that some legs, such as headings, may not be depicted.”

Do you feel departure procedures were adequately covered in your instrument training?

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