Australians Concerned About Updated Pilot Licensing Regulations

 - August 4, 2014, 4:35 PM

Helicopter operators have voiced concerns about Australia’s new flight-crew licensing law (CASR Part 61), claiming few people understand the regulation’s content or impact because the rules are badly written and too complex. Already postponed once, Part 61 is scheduled to take effect on September 1 this year. In a letter to Australian prime minister Warren Truss, Australian Helicopter Industry Association (AHIA) president Peter Crook requested the new rules again be put on hold to give operators time to propose revisions. The AHIA says the extra time is especially necessary since Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority is short of qualified officers to conduct flight tests. “The introduction of a completely new licensing system together with new training syllabuses, with no perceived safety benefits, but additional costs is not understood,” said Crook in a news release. “Legislation needs to be…in plain English and not in the criminal code format understood by judges but not aviators.” According to the AHIA, “One senior instructor said, ‘Now imagine a student pilot preparing for an air law examination based on the new regulations. If nobody understands them, who can teach them? What hope do you have of passing?’”