A false alert went out this week about a danger to Iowa pilots.State budget cutbacks have erased almost all the funding for the small airports around Iowa, and they won’t get money this year to repave crumbling runways or upgrade lighting systems. But the last straw for some was the money for AWOS, the Automated Weather Observation System that sends out radio broadcasts continually from local airports. It can be critical to a safe landing, to have the local wind direction, and the altimeter reading is vital to knowing exactly how far above the ground the aircraft is, coming in for a landing. An alert to aviation advocates Tuesday said AWOS would end July first…but a second notice quickly corrected that, noting the transportation department shuffled money from other funds to keep the aviation weather casts on the air.
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