special VFR flight

special VFR (visual flight rules) flight

A VFR flight cleared by air traffic control to operate within Class B, C, D, and E surface areas in meteorological conditions below VMC (ICAO). VMC stands for visual meteorological condition.
An Illustrated Dictionary of Aviation Copyright © 2005 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
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The National Transportation Safety Board determined the probable cause(s) of this accident to include: "The pilot's decision to depart under special VFR flight at night when instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the departure airport and along the route of flight and his continued VFR flight into instrument meteorological conditions, which resulted in his spatial disorientation and subsequent loss of aircraft control."
Even in airports like ours where Special VFR flights are generally permitted, our requirement to sterilize the airspace for them means they still get moved to the back of the line behind any IFR traffic.

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