Ingo Noka

All Well with Port Weld

In Flight Bag on January 29, 2012 at 10:58 pm

Frederic Weld (1823-1891)

Finally the mystery of reporting point Port Well has been resolved.  We know where Port Well is, in fact we know Port Well does not exist.  The actual name is Port Weld, which is a name that is not used anymore.  The actual name is Kuala Sepetang, and it must have been that way for quite some time, considering that our 40 years old maps already use it.  ATC in Malaysia is certainly not changing things around in a rush.

For over a year the fearless aviators of the FRAS flying club had to rely on wild guesses to determine where this reporting point “Port Well” might be.  ATC surely never explained it and no map or AIP document mentions the place.  Nevertheless, without fail, Lumpur Info or Ipoh tower would ask for a report at Port Well.  Until now, our chief flight instructor Captain Singh (Kevin Muk got a job that does not allow him to fly anymore) determined that Port Well must be somewhere between Pantai Remis and Bagan Serai, probably at the border of the Ipoh TMA.

Over the Chinese New year weekend we went to Langkawi and I got the decisive hint from Ipoh tower that allowed me to unravel the mystery.  The nice controller figured, probably based on my accent, that I do not really know where I am and told me to report at “Port Well or abeam Taiping.”  Abeam Taiping lays the fishing village Kuala Sepetang.  The amazing Wikipedia actually has an article on that village and here is where I found the missing link.

Apparently the British Governor of the Straits Settlement (aka Singapore) initiated the very first train line in Malaysia, which was then built from Taiping to the closed port at the West coast of Malaysia.  The name of that governor (who also used to be a prime minister of New Zealand) was Sir Frederic Weld (1823 – 1891), and so the port was named “Port Weld”.

The coordinates of Kuala Sepetang are   4° 50′ 18″ N, 100° 37′ 54″ E.

  1. There is no official VFR reporting points in Malaysia!
    Would greatly appreciate, seeing you are very experienced flying VFR around Malaysia if you could provide a list of so called VFR reporting points normally used.

    • I believe you are right that there is no list of VFR reporting points in the AIP of Malaysia. However, there is a system of VFR lanes in the AIP, which defines a number of points that are routinely used for position reports to ATC. Incidentally, one of the more recent revisions introduced Port Weld as one such points.
      Other than that, the VFR flight plan can serve as a way to “agree” reporting points with ATC, even so I have experienced ATC asking for different reporting points than what was submitted in my flight plan.

  2. Ingo, you are truly my hero. Well done man!

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