Accident Potential Zones


NAS Oceana, NALF Fentress and Chambers Field have three Accident Potential Zones: Clear Zone, Accident Potential Zone 1 (APZ 1), and Accident Potential Zone 2 (APZ 2). Clear Zone is the first 3000 feet off the runway threshold. At the edge of the runway, Clear Zone is 1,500 feet wide and widens to 2,284 feet wide. APZ 1 starts at the end of Clear Zone (3,000 foot mark), is 5,000 feet long and 3,000 feet wide. APZ 2 begins at the end of APZ 1 (8,000 foot mark), is 7,000 feet long and 3,000 feet wide. The entire area is 15,000 feet long.

Additionally, the DoD identifies APZ's as a planning tool for local planning agencies. APZ's are areas where an aircraft mishap is most likely to occur if one occurs. They do not reflect the probability of an accident. APZ's follow arrival, departure and pattern flight tracks and are based upon analysis of historical data. For an area to be deemed an APZ, a minimum 5,000 flight operations- landing or takeoff- have to occur annually. The AICUZ map defines three APZ's- the Clear Zone, APZ 1, and APZ 2. The Clear Zone extends 3,000 feet beyond the runway and has the highest potential for accidents. APZ 1 extends 5,000 feet beyond the Clear Zone, and APZ 2 extends 7,000 feet beyond APZ1. An accident is more likely to occur in APZ 1 than APZ 2 and more likely to occur in the Clear Zone than in either APZ 1 or APZ 2. Land use development should be compatible with noise zones and APZ's around a military air field. Modifications to proposed land developments near the airfield can help resolve tension between the community and the military. In general, DoD recommends that noise sensitive uses (e.g., houses, churches, amphitheaters, etc.) be placed outside the high noise zones and that people-intensive uses (e.g., regional shopping malls, theaters, etc.) not be placed in APZ's. These DoD recommendations are intended to serve only as guidelines. Local governments alone are responsible for regulating land use. NAS Oceana contour maps accurately reflect aircraft arrival/ departure procedures and changes in aircraft type and number.

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