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In the flight plans there are included departure procedures. However, sometimes something can change eg. different runway is assigned by ATC and then departure procedures in the flight plan is invalid, because SIDs are assigned to the runways.

  1. Are flight plan amendments send after such change?
  2. Does it happen often?
  3. How airline dispatcher knows which departure procedure to fill in the flight plan if he doesn't know which runway will be used in the future or what will be the wind direction etc.
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    $\begingroup$ Only some countries require you to include the SID in the flightplan. In many countries, you will just list the first en-route fix, and ATC will assign a SID prior to departure. Also remember that most airports don't have SIDs. $\endgroup$ – J. Hougaard Apr 4 at 17:14
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1) Not to my knowledge, these are short-term deviations from plan that do not require an updated plan (similar to ATC offering direct routings - shortcuts).

2) Not sure. What qualifies as “often”?

3) Experience, local and airport procedure knowledge and a weather (wind!) forecast go great lengths in predicting departure runways and routings.

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When it comes to flight planning, dispatchers are the best in the business. That is literally what they are payed to do. However, they, for obvious reasons, don't always guess the correct runway. Luckily, it doesn't really matter. As long as the aircraft has the performance to take off from the assigned runway (which would be calculated in the FMC or EFB) the new runway can likely be used without a Departure Procedure or SID change. Runways are switched quite often, but it's not a big deal.

This is because SIDs almost always work for any runway. For example, look at the BROAK1 at KPHX. You can easily see that each runway has slightly different departure headings and early turns, but all join together at the fix BROAK for the rest of the departure. So, if a crew was assigned a different runway, they punch the new assignment into the flight plan on the FMS and off they go.

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    $\begingroup$ "This is because SIDs almost always work for any runway." While that may well be correct for the United States, it certainly it not in most of the world $\endgroup$ – J. Hougaard Apr 4 at 17:13

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