You are receiving this information as a user of the National Air Space System who operates in the vicinity of Hillsboro Airport (HIO). This information is intended as an educational tool to increase safety through awareness, and as a means to mitigate risk.
During the summer of 2015 there were three filed near mid-air collision (NMAC) reports in the vicinity of HIO involving gliders and aircraft participating in air traffic control services. One NMAC involved a VFR Mooney and a glider operating 5 nautical miles north of the North Plains Gliderport (1OR4). Two NMACs included high performance turbo jets departing HIO and gliders operating near HETAT waypoint. The NMACs occurred at 2600, 2800, and 5000 feet.
Attached you will find a diagram of the “hot spot” around HETAT waypoint, screen shots of a radar display showing a glider squawking 1202, and Instrument Departure Procedures utilized by IFR aircraft at HIO. Also included is a power point developed by the FAA’s Rocky Mountain District, resultant of similar events occurring in the Denver area.
Portland Approach Control in conjunction with Hillsboro Tower, and Hillsboro FSDO plan to conduct briefings for user groups that operate in and around the vicinity of HIO airport. These briefings will be similar to those provided to the air traffic controllers at Portland Approach. Please look for announcements regarding pilot briefing location and times. I look forward to seeing you at a future pilot briefing.
Scott A. Burk Acting Air Traffic Manager Portland TRACON (P80) Scott.Burk@faa.gov