KDFW RNAV routes & flightaware accuracy


I created a map of all RNAV departures of KDFW airport in hopes of finding quiet spots to buy a house.

However, I noticed a huge discrepancy between those routes and routes actually flown by airplanes (according to flightaware).

Either airplanes are not compliant with RNAV or flightaware is not accurate.

Am I missing something here?


Do you have an example of a flight you think should be following the RNAV procedures (link the FlightAware flight URL) where the track doesn’t match what you think it should be?

Yeah, this one for example: flightaware.com/live/flight_trac … rline-0412

No procedure currently published matches the path this flight has taken.

The datasource for that flight track is ADS-B so it is going to be quite accurate (i.e. that’s where the aircraft actually was)
At worst you might have a lateral displacement if it’s not reporting GPS data for some reason, but (a) that should be minimal for a departure and (b) I don’t see it on that track (it’s uncommon)

They filed LOWGN7 but indeed the actual path taken diverges.

It’s not unusual at all for actual flight paths to diverge from the published/filed departure procedure. ATC is going to vector the aircraft in whatever way fits them best into the flow of traffic.

In terms of finding an area free of airport noise, I’d advise that outright distance from the airport would be a more important consideration than trying to suss out and avoid “common” departure/arrival corridors.

Here in the United States, very little effort is made by the regulatory agency (ie the FAA) to enforce noise abatement (climb/descent and lateral track) procedures that would be beneficial to the local populace living in close proximity to airports.

This is may be due, in large part, to the dual charter given to the FAA by the U.S. Congress back in 1958 for the agency to both regulate and promote air commerce.

Unlike Europe, Japan, Australia, along with numerous other countries where strict adherence to published noise abatement procedures are enforced with sanctions given for non-compliance, little is done in this country by the FAA to favor the general public over the airlines. (JMO)

For a captain who allows his aircraft to deviate from published arrival or departure tracks or noise abatement climb procedures at airports like Heathrow, Schiphol, Frankfurt, Haneda, etc…, almost assuredly his airline will be notified of the deviation and fined or possibly lose valuable landing/takeoff slots for continued non-compliance.


I’d most definitely live far away from the airport if I could, but that’s not the case. I have to drive to the office every day, which is close to the airport.

Ok, so if airplanes may or may not follow the filed departure procedure, that explains why there are so much divergence. I’m going to adopt a different approach.

Question: Is there any way to make the airplane trace lines (green and blue) persist in the map for longer? I’m going to build a sort of heat map.

Contact the DFW Noise Information Center for a graphical depiction of DFW departures and arrivals over a defined time period.

Their phone number is 972-973-5573