What/When: ICAO Doc 4444 revision effective 5 Nov. 2020, Amendment 9 to PANS-ATM is intended to address the requirements and procedures for:

  • Separation methods and minima
  • ATS Surveillance services
  • Procedures related to in-flight contingencies in oceanic airspace
  • Wake turbulence categories of aircraft
  • Special air reports; and
  • Strategic lateral offset procedures (SLOP)

The most impactful development for business jet operators involves changes to the oceanic contingencies and the weather deviation procedures. Note the alignment of "Special Procedures for In-flight Contingencies in Oceanic Airspace," whereas the NAT HLA, WATRS, and other oceanic airspaces will become the same if adopted by state airspace managers. The adoption of the 5NM offset currently in place in the NAT/WATRS region for deviating from your route without a clearance continues to support reduced lateral separations in the airspaces. This change is a good thing for operators as we are getting closer to the same rule utilization for all oceanic airspace.

The quick ref diagram below will give you a summary of the contingency changes:


The changes to the weather deviation procedures should also be a significant focus for operators. If a clearance cannot be obtained by the time a deviation is required, and a deviation of more than 5 NMs is needed, then the point at which an operator would climb or descend 300ft will now be 5 NMs for all oceanic airspaces that have adopted the new procedure. The ICAO 4444 document containing changes only can be viewed here.

Ensure you check State AIP’s for the adoption of the new procedures.