FlightAware Discussions

Flights on Map but not listed


Twice this evening I noted flights on the local area map, with the Flight Code and other info displayed, that did not show up in either the listing or when directly queried. I know the map was correct in one case, as the FedEx MD11 came directly overhead on approach.

Why would a flight be displayed with full info in the map but not elsewhere?


PS: Love the site, btw (but you knew that, right?)


If a flight is flying VFR with flight following, we will sometimes receive position reports and if we do we plot them on the map. However we haven’t received any other info (destination, route of flight, time, etc), so we can’t create a flight page for it.

But a FedEx MD11 flying VFR would be rather odd… do you recall the callsign?


Yes it was FedEx 26, which is a number the often use for a 2 minute flight (!) that crosses SF Bay. In this case the flight was inbound from the Pacific Ocean. It used the normal landing approach that jets from Asia or Hawaii use to either SFO or OAK. There’s no possibility it was flying VFR, but that number does seem to be used for unscheduled flights.


FDX26 did its local SFO/OAK 2-minute thing today (11/22) at 0143-0145 PST. The map track, however, indicates it later went to Athens and back, presumably VFR.

It’s possible that its last transponder code was assigned to a different flight and might have been tracked as both FDX26 and the correct later flight number.

Strange map!


Could be, but I didn’t find anything else coming in from the pacific at that moment. I only noticed it because it came into the area from the west alone and was very conspicuous, but it did pass overhead as it arrived from the ocean so the arcraft did arrive.

This happened again just now (7:35pm pacific) with SIA2, a Singapore Airlines 747, which normally flies between Hong Kong and SFO. Very loud as it passed overhead, so I believe it likely was a 744. The arrival time is correct as well based on previous flights, but no record of it since October on the list, (and no other flight on the list which coud be it under a different number.)

So far all the flights I have noticed missing from the list were arriving at SFO or OAK from the ocean, which could be a clue. Perhaps when they are picked up in the system in mid-flight something is bouncing them out of the list. Could it be an effect of the dateline?


There are still glitches in the international flight support for flight plans as well as arrivals/departures but our radar/position tracking system still records the movements of these flights.