Comments on my last entry suggest that I have misinterpreted the IFR rules of my nearest neighbour. I don't feel too badly about this, as I know my own country's rules well, don't hold a US instrument rating, and don't currently operate IFR in US airspace, but I'm getting some contradictory information from some experienced US pilots, and I want to straighten it out.
Old Blind Dog, who has been flying aircraft of all sort for a lot longer than me, contradicts what I wrote in my last post, saying "the restriction is applicable to part 135 or 121 operations but not to part 91 corporate or private operations" and "RVR is only controlling prior to commencement of approach" and "For operations under part 91 I can commence the approach no matter what the reported weather."
I'm looking at Part 91 of the Federal Aviation Regulations. (As I admitted earlier my copy of the FAR/AIM is from 1998, so I welcome corrections of fact as well as interpretation.) According to 91.101, Section B applies to "aircraft within the United States and within 12 nautical miles of the coast." No mention of specific commercial operations.
91.175 (c) states that "no pilot may operate an aircraft, except a military aircraft of the United States, at any airport below the authorized MDA or continue an approach below the authorized DH unless --"
Three necessary conditions follow: stability of the approach, visibility, and visual reference. The visibility condition reads, "(2) the flight visibility is not less than the visibility prescribed in the standard instrument approach being used."
The next bit is "91.175 (d) Landing No pilot operating an aircraft, except a military aircraft of the United States, may land that aircraft when the flight visibility is less than the visibility prescribed in the standard instrument approach being used."
91.175 (f) Civil airport takeoff minimums appears to confirm David's comment that part 91 aircraft have no legal take off limitations at all.
I'm glad that what the experienced guy is telling me corresponds more closely to my idea of safety than my interpretation of the FARs, but I want to know how to get what he is saying out of what I'm reading. And yes, I know the joke about what happens if pilots trying to understand regulations, but I'm willing to risk it.