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AIRPORTS INTERNATIONAL

ACI COUNCIL
INTERNATIONAL
AIR TRANSPORT
ASSOCIATION

APRON
MARKINGS &
SIGNS
37

HANDBOOK
First Edition 2001

B747
STOP

B737
STOP
AIRPORTS INTERNATIONAL
ACI COUNCIL
INTERNATIONAL
AIR TRANSPORT
ASSOCIATION

APRON
MARKINGS &
SIGNS
HANDBOOK
First Edition 2001
Notice

DISCLAIMER. The information contained in this


publication is subject to constant review in the
light of changing requirements and regulations.
No subscriber or other reader should act on the
basis of any such information without referring
to applicable laws and regulations and/or with-
out taking appropriate professional advice.
Although every effort has been made to ensure
accuracy, Airports Council International (ACI)
and the International Air Transport Association
(IATA) shall not be held responsible for loss or
damage caused by errors, omissions, misprints
or misinterpretation of the contents hereof.
Furthermore the Airports Council International
and the International Air Transport Association
expressly disclaim all and any liability to any
person, whether a purchaser of this publication
or not, in respect of anything done or omitted,
and the consequences of anything done or
omitted, by any such person in reliance on the
contents of this publication.

No part of the Apron Marking and Signs


Handbook may be reproduced, recast, refor-
matted or transmitted in any form by any means,
electronic or mechanical, including photocopy-
ing, recording or any information storage and
retrieval system, without prior written permis-
sion from:

Director, Technical/Safety
Airports Council International
P.O. Box 16
1215 Geneva 15 - Airport
Switzerland

Director Passenger Services


International Air Transport Association
P.O. Box 416
1215 Geneva 15 - Airport
Switzerland

Apron Marking & Signs Handbook Copies of this publication are available from:
ISBN 92-9171-137-3 Publications Department
©2001 Airports Council International and Airports Council International
International Air Transport Association. P.O. Box 16
All rights reserved 1215 Geneva 15 Airport
Montreal-Geneva Switzerland
Tel. +41 22 717 8585
Fax. +41 22 717 8888
Email: aci@airports.org
CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION 5
RECOMMENDED COLOURS 6-7

APRON MARKINGS AND SIGNS 9


Stand lead-in line 10 - 11
Taxi side stripe markings and apron edge lines 12 - 13
Stand identification Option 1 14 - 15
Option 2 16 - 17
Option 3 18 - 19
Basic aircraft stop line 20 - 21
Multiple aircraft stop line 22 - 23
Basic marshaller/towing stop line 24 - 25
Multiple marshaller/towing stop line 26 - 27
Stand safety line 28 - 29
Tractor push-back line and push-back limit line 30 - 31
Power out turn bar and alignment line 32 - 33
Equipment parking line 34 - 35
No parking area 36 - 37
Airbridge wheel position 38 - 39
Underground services including fuel hydrant markings 40 - 41
Service road and centre line 42 - 43
Pedestrian crossing 44 - 45
Service road running alongside an aircraft stand 46 - 47
Service road running alongside a vehicle limit line 48 - 49
Taxiway crossing sign/marking 50 - 51
Typical apron signage 52 - 53
Typical service road signage 54
Typical emergency signs 55
FOD bin marking 56

Example of an apron layout (showing use of markings and signs) 58 - 59

3
INTRODUCTION

This handbook presents a series of apron markings and signs, based on a study of
current best practice. These markings and signs were devised by representatives of a
number of airport operators, airlines and other organisations, meeting under the
auspices of ACI and IATA.

ACI and IATA recommend this handbook to airport operators to foster


uniformity of markings and signs. Greater uniformity should in turn improve recognition
of hazards and increase the reliability and safety of aircraft and vehicle traffic on aprons.
This document is intended to complement the ACI Apron Safety Handbook (2nd Edition,
1996), updating chapter 3 of that document, and ICAO Annex 14, Volume 1 (3rd edition
1999), sections 5.2.12 and 5.2.13.

The proposals in this handbook have been submitted to the International Civil Aviation
Organization (ICAO) with a view to their inclusion in future amendments to ICAO
Annex 14 and the related manuals.

A small working group composed of representatives from ACI, IATA and other
organisations will continue to review these markings and signs and add new ones as
required.

ACI and IATA would like to recognise the significant contributions of Trevor Jones, Ani
Ketch and Peter Snelling of the former Federal Airports Corporation (FAC), Australia in
the initial preparation of this document. In addition, ACI and IATA are grateful for the
financial support provided by the FAC in the preparation of drafts of this document,
over an extended period.

This handbook represents the first step in a process which must also include
promoting awareness of apron markings and signs and enhancing the training of
personnel using apron areas, including awareness of potential hazards. It is intended for
the use of:
- planners of apron areas;
- all staff working on aprons;
- pilots;
- air traffic controllers; and
- apron controllers.

We commend this handbook.

Airports Council International International Air Transport Association

5
RECOMMENDED COLOURS

The proposed colour coding of apron markings is shown opposite. The rationale for the
use of yellow (in particular) conforms to paragraph 5.2.1.5 of ICAO Annex 14, Volume 1,
which specifies that taxiway markings and aircraft stand markings shall be yellow.
However ICAO has no standards for colours of apron safety lines and roadways, as yet.

Yellow Yellow lines are universally accepted for the regulation, control and
movement of aircraft (see ICAO Annex 14, paragraph 5.2.1.5).

Double Yellow Double yellow lines are normally used for taxi side stripe markings,
delineating the boundary between full and low strength
pavement (including a pavement edge). These may be used on either
taxiways or aprons.

White White lines relate to the regulation, control and movement of vehicles, as
opposed to the regulation, control and movement of aircraft.

Double White Double white lines indicate that a vehicle should not cross unless
circumstances require and it is safe to do so. This marking follows com-
mon international practice for roads, and is especially used to mark the
side of service roads which adjoin a taxiway or taxilane.

Red Red is universally seen as a colour representing danger. In this context,


it is appropriate within the aviation industry to continue this practice. It is
especially used for aircraft stand safety lines, which must never be
crossed while an aircraft is manoeuvring into or out of a stand.

All markings in this book may be used with


a contrasting border, if required.

To increase their visibility at night and in low visibility conditions, and where
necessary because of the colour of the pavement, the markings may have a border on
either side in a contrasting colour, as follows:

1) Yellow or white markings may have a black border on light coloured pave-
ment (e.g. concrete).
2) Red markings may have a white border, on dark coloured pavement (e.g.
bitumen).

6
RECOMMENDED COLOURS

7
APRON MARKINGS & SIGNS
Stand lead-in line

Taxiway centre line markings are clearly defined in ICAO Annex 14, Volume 1 (third edi-
tion, 1999) section 5.2.8. Stand lead-in lines are effectively a continuation of taxiway
centre lines, and should have the same width. Their function is to allow an aircraft to taxi
under its own power or to be towed whilst maintaining the necessary clearances from
obstacles. It is recommended that a contrasting colour (black) be used when taxiway or
stand centre lines are painted on concrete.

The minimum acceptable width specified by ICAO for a stand lead-in line is 15cm (see
ICAO Annex 14, Volume 1, paragraph 5.2.8.7), but ACI and IATA recommend a 20cm
minimum width, in order to give increased visibility, as shown on the facing page.

10
Stand lead-in line

20cm 10cm 20 10cm

ON BITUMEN ON CONCRETE

Note: all diagrams in this handbook may be used with a contrasting border, if required
(as shown above).

11
Taxi side stripe markings and
apron edge lines

Taxi side stripe markings and apron edge lines are used to delineate the boundary of
a taxiway or apron area where the edge of the full strength pavement cannot be easily
discerned, or when a low strength shoulder adjoins the full strength pavement.

12
Taxi side stripe markings and
apron edge lines

13
Stand identification - Option 1

This is the preferred option for a stand identification marking. This marking assists the
pilot of an approaching aircraft to identify the appropriate stand position, prior to
initiating the turn. ACI and IATA believe that placing the identifiers adjacent to the line is
an enhancement of the current ICAO recommendation in ICAO Annex 14, Volume 1,
paragraph 5.2.12.4, which increases the visibility of the stand number to the pilot in the
approaching aircraft.

A stand identification marking is an information marking replacing a direction or


destination sign. Following ICAO standards for the manoeuvring area, a marking of
this nature should be in black on a yellow background (see Annex 14, Volume 1, para-
graph 5.2.16.4). Regarding the size of the characters, paragraph 5.2.16.6 recommends
a height of 4m on the manoeuvring area. The form of the characters is shown in
Appendix 3 to Annex 14, Volume 1. ACI would support a study of character sizes
required for optimum pilot visibility of such markings from the cockpit of aircraft of
varying sizes, and at typical taxying speeds in the vicinity of aprons.

14
Stand identification - Option 1

(suggested dimensions)
(not to scale)

15
Stand identification - Option 2

This marking is a variant of the preferred option, for use when aircraft approach from a
single direction.

16
Stand identification - Option 2

(not to scale)

17
Stand identification - Option 3

This marking is similar to those illustrated in the ICAO Aerodrome Design Manual,
Part 4 - Visual Aids (3rd edition, 1993), section 2.3 (Apron Markings), with the stand
number displayed on the lead-in line. ACI does not believe that “cockpit over centre line”
markings are generally necessary for manoeuvring on to aircraft stands, as pilots are
very experienced at the low speed manoeuvres necessary to align an aircraft with the
stand centre line.

18
Stand identification - Option 3

(not to scale)

19
Basic aircraft stop line

This marking should be used where an aircraft is positioned on a stand without


marshalling, where the transverse bar indicates the cockpit stop position. The
marking should be suitable for the critical aircraft (usually the largest aircraft) which
will use the stand. The same markings are used on either a power through position or
a power in, push out position. The dimension X shown is believed sufficient to ensure
visibility by the pilot in command.

20
Basic aircraft stop line

21
Multiple aircraft stop line

These markings should be used where an aircraft is positioned without a marshaller, but
in association with an airbridge, or where fuel hydrant positions are critical, so that
different cockpit stop positions are necessary for the different aircraft types to be
accommodated. The dimensions of the markings are as shown on the preceding page,
including the dimension labelled X, which varies according to the maximum aircraft size
to be accommodated.

Some airport operators may prefer to mark each of the different stop positions with a
letter or a number (e.g. A, B or 1, 2), rather than an aircraft type. In this case, the
control tower would inform the pilot which stop line should be used.

The word STOP shown in the illustration above and on the facing page may be regarded
as optional, and would be omitted where the markings for different aircraft sizes would be
too close together.

These markings may be supplemented by some form of Visual Docking Guidance


System for the use of pilots. This handbook does not set out to provide information on
such systems.

22
Multiple aircraft stop line

23
Basic marshaller/towing stop line

The marking opposite should be used where an aircraft, either under power or tow, is
positioned on stand by a marshaller. The transverse bar indicates the nose wheel stop
position to the marshaller. The same marking is used on either a power through position
or a power in, push out position. The design of the marking is dependent on the critical
aircraft for the stand

24
Basic marshaller/towing stop line

25
Multiple marshaller/towing stop line

The markings opposite should be used where an aircraft, either under power or tow, is
positioned by a marshaller, but in association with an airbridge or where fuel hydrant
positions are critical, so that different nose wheel stop positions are needed for the
different aircraft types to be accommodated. The dimensions of the markings should be
sufficient to be readily visible to the marshaller or tug driver. Characters should be a
minimum of 50cm high, it is suggested. The number and position of the markings are
determined by the number and type of aircraft using the stand.

Some airport operators may prefer to mark each of the different stop positions with a
letter or a number, rather than an aircraft type. In this case the marshaller should be
informed as to which stop position should be used.

26
Multiple marshaller/towing stop line

50cm
1m

27
Stand safety line

This line depicts the area that must remain free of staff, vehicles and equipment when
an aircraft is taxiing (or being towed) into position or has started engines in preparation
for departure. Once all engines have been shut down and the area is safe, vehicles may
then cross the line to service the aircraft.

ICAO Annex 14 paragraph 5.2.13.4 recommends that the minimum acceptable width of
a stand safety line is 10cm, but ACI and IATA recommend a 20cm minimum width.

The size of this area depends on the type of aircraft using the stand position. The area
should be dimensioned to allow for a safety zone around jet engine intakes which must
be kept free to avoid suction dangers. Aircraft manufacturers give guidance on safety
zones required around engines operating at ground idle. A similar safety zone should
also be taken into account on stands used by propellor-driven aircraft.

28
Stand safety line

29
Tractor push-back line and push-back limit line

This line marking is for the use of a tractor (tug) driver when pushing back an aircraft
from a stand. It may be used to ensure sufficient obstacle clearance, on stands where
clearances around manoeuvring aircraft are restricted.

A transverse bar indicates the position where the aircraft (nose wheel) is to be stopped,
prior to being disconnected from the tractor (tug). A width of 10 cm is considered
sufficient to be visible to tractor drivers; greater width may prove distracting to pilots.

The white colour used, and the broken line, should avoid confusion with markings for
aircraft. Note: the black border shown is only required on light-coloured pavement.

30
Tractor push-back line and push-back limit line

31
Power out turn bar and alignment line

The turn bar is used to advise the pilot of the position where the aircraft should
commence turning when it leaves the stand. The alignment line allows the pilot of a
widebody aircraft to align the aircraft on the centre line prior to bringing the aircraft to a
stop or when the aircraft is under power, prior to leaving the stand.

32
Power out turn bar and alignment line

33
Equipment parking line

This marking is used to delineate the area within which vehicles and equipment can park
freely without infringing any stand areas or taxiways, including taxiway strip
surfaces. The shape is purely indicative.

34
Equipment parking line

35
No parking area

A no parking area for vehicles is indicated by red hatchings as shown opposite. Once
again the shape shown is purely indicative.

36
No parking area

37
Airbridge wheel position

The area under an airbridge has to be kept free of vehicles and equipment to ensure the
safe operation of the airbridge. Wheel positions are recommended for the airbridge itself,
using either a square or circle, to locate the airbridge in a position that allows aircraft to
enter the stand.

38
Airbridge wheel position

39
Underground services including
fuel hydrant markings

This marking is indicative of the markings recommended for use with all underground
services. The size and shape of the marking depends on the size of the service
opening. Clearly marked reflective warning flags should also be placed adjacent to an
open and/or lifted underground service. Any above-ground projection, such as a lift-up
hydrant connection system or cover, should preferably be painted red.

Markings used for fuel hydrants may include the word “FUEL” painted in white on the
cover of the opening.

40
Underground services including
fuel hydrant markings

41
Service road and centre line

Each lane of a service road should be of the minimum width to accommodate the widest
equipment in use at that location e.g. emergency vehicles or ground support equipment.
It is important to mark roads on apron areas, to keep vehicle traffic clear of aircraft, taxi-
ways and to minimise the risk of vehicle-to-vehicle accidents.

The side of the road on which vehicles drive and the dimensions of markings should
conform to national highway traffic regulations.

42
Service road and centre line

minimum minimum

43
Pedestrian crossing

White is the suggested colour for a pedestrian crossing, although colour and design
should conform to the standard usage on roads outside the airport environment.

The dimensions on the facing page are indicative only.

44
Pedestrian crossing

45
Service road running alongside an
aircraft stand

This diagram shows that when markings are located alongside other markings, both
individual markings should still be shown in full.

46
Service road running alongside an
aircraft stand

47
Service road running alongside a vehicle
limit line

Where a service road is also the limit of vehicle activity on an apron, this should be
shown with a double white line. This indicates DO NOT CROSS. The reason for the
limitation may be varied, although the most common limitation is to provide adequate
clearance for adjacent taxiing aircraft.

48
Service road running alongside a vehicle
limit line

49
Taxiway crossing sign/marking

The drawing opposite shows the recommended marking where a service road crosses
a taxiway or aircraft stand taxilane. A separate sign may indicate that vehicles are only
required to stop IF an aircraft is in movement on the taxiway.

The vehicle stop line (double white line) should be located at a safe distance from the
taxiway centre line, according to the wingspan of the largest category of aircraft using
the taxiway (see ICAO Annex 14, Volume 1, table 3.1). For example, for a code E aircraft
(wingspan up to 65 meters) ICAO recommends a 23 meters taxiway width, i.e. centre
line to edge distance of 11.5 meters, whereas the recommended centre-line to object
distance for this code of aircraft is 47.5 meters. It will be noted that the diagram facing
is not to scale.

50
Taxiway crossing sign/marking

(not to scale)
51
Typical apron signage

Road signage and/or road markings should follow the applicable road traffic regulations
in each country. A series of typical signs appear on the following pages.

Jet blast
It is recommended that jet blast signs or painted markings on the ground should be
placed at appropriate locations such as on service roads.

Noise hazard
It is recommended that noise hazard signs should be placed at appropriate locations
such as staff doors to apron areas, building walls, etc.

Road traffic signage


Signage on airport service roads should be in accordance with national road traffic
regulations. Typical examples are shown on the following pages.

52
Typical apron signage

Jet blast sign/marking

Noise hazard area


53
Typical service road signage

No smoking

Pedestrians ahead No entry

Max speed

Max Vehicle height Mandatory turn

54
Typical emergency signs

(this is typical of the signage and system used where fuel


shut-off points are provided on an apron)

55
FOD bin marking
(to be placed on or near aircraft stand)

F.O.D.

Safety on the apron does not end with signs and markings. Foreign Object Damage
(FOD) is an ever present hazard to aircraft. Appropriately marked bins, as depicted, can
assist in reducing this hazard by reminding staff of their obligation to collect and dispose
of FOD correctly. They should be placed on or near each aircraft stand.

56
INTENTIONALLY LEFT BLANK
Example of an apron layout
(showing use of markings)

The diagram on the following page shows the use of some of the markings specified in
this handbook in the context of the entire apron area. It may assist in the design of
suitable marking schemes at specific airports.

58
Example of an apron layout
(not to scale)

59
INTENTIONALLY LEFT BLANK