Transition to ICAO NOTAM format and new NOTAM Series
Changes effective October 10, 2019
On October 10, 2019, NAV CANADA transitioned to the ICAO NOTAM format. As a result, NAV CANADA now distributes all Canadian domestic NOTAM using the ICAO format under new NOTAM Series.
NOTAMs obtained directly from a NAV CANADA website are accessed through Collaborative Flight Planning Services (CFPS) instead of the Aviation Weather Web Site (AWWS) where they were previously found.
Note that Runway Surface Condition (RSC) are not affected by this change. A change to the RSC format is planned for November 2020, in accordance with specifications of the Transport Canada Advisory Circular AC 300-019.
Note: Flight Information Centres continue to provide briefing services, including NOTAM information, via telephone as described on our Flight Planning page.
A key difference between the ICAO NOTAM format and the previous approach is that NOTAMs are now geographically-referenced, rather than based on NOTAM Files. Georeferencing is a process that determines a NOTAM’s impacted location based on geographic coordinates, and is done for National, FIR and Aerodrome NOTAMs.
The NOTAM retrieval tool is placed on a section of CFPS – a new tab called “Weather” – which does not require a login. Users will still need a CFPS account in order to file flight plans online.
Using CFPS, users are able to search for NOTAMs by entering an Aerodrome ID, NAVAID, FIR, or geographic coordinates, with an optional desired radius around these points of interest. They can also enter a flight route and receive all NOTAMs which geographically intersect the route. NOTAMs for an aerodrome are no longer associated to another aerodrome’s NOTAM File, and the concept of a NOTAM File has ceased to exist.
As of October 10, 2019, NOTAMs are only available on CFPS, and the functionality has been removed from AWWS. At the same time, NOTAMs switched to the ICAO format, whether they are accessed through CFPS or a third-party application.
The ICAO NOTAM format
The adoption of the ICAO NOTAM format – already used by most countries - ensures compliance with international standards and eliminates the need for pilots who fly international routes to be familiar with more than one NOTAM format. It will also pave the way for more advanced filtering functionality, reducing NOTAM clutter by help pilots access just the NOTAMs pertinent to their flight.
The format divides a NOTAM’s content into eight defined sections which are further explained in the reference materials listed below.
Summary of NOTAM changes timing
|NOTAM retrieval tool
||AWWS (or 3rd party tool)
||AWWS or CFPS
(or 3rd party tool)
(or 3rd party tool)
|NOTAM search approach
||Input Aerodrome ID(s) to retrieve selected NOTAM Files
||AWWS – no change
CFPS – input point(s) of interest or flight route to retrieve NOTAMs within defined geographic area
|Input point(s) of interest or flight route to retrieve NOTAMs within defined geographic area|
Resources for aircraft operators
|ICAO NOTAM Format Brochure
||A printable brochure on interpreting the ICAO NOTAM format, including examples comparing NOTAMS in the current Canadian Domestic format against the new format.|
||A presentation and speaker’s notes that provide a high level overview of the upcoming NOTAM changes (ICAO format and retrieval through CFPS).|
||An 11x17” PDF that can be printed and displayed in pilot lounges, classrooms, flying clubs, etc. to raise awareness of the upcoming NOTAM changes.|