The UK Parliament’s Transport Committee has criticized the European Union’s proposed flight- and duty-time regulations, saying that while they represent an improvement over the current versions, some of the new rules seem to fly in the face of current scientific research. The changes, driven by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), are expected to take effect in November this year.
Civil aviation authority
Flying commercially using a single-engine aircraft under instrument flight rules (SECIFR) or at night may be taken for granted in the U.S., but it has not been possible in Europe–until now. The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has cracked the door open–first for cargo operators and more recently, in the past few months, for flights carrying fare-paying passengers. It has left the decision to individual countries’ regulators, however, and France and Finland have taken the lead.
The Gulfstream Beijing Service Center recently received authorization to service Gulfstream aircraft registered in Hong Kong and Macau. The approval was granted through a joint maintenance management (JMM) agreement among the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), the Civil Aviation Department of Hong Kong and the Civil Aviation Authority of Macau SAR.
India’s Directorate-General of Civil Aviation’s (DGCA) days as a regulator appear to be numbered now that the country’s government has approved “in principle” a new Civil Aviation Authority to replace it. India’s information and broadcasting minister explained that the new CAA will be an autonomous body tasked with looking at aviation safety issues and composed of a chairperson and at least seven but not more than nine other members. No date for the next step toward approving the CAA has been announced.
New risk and safety management requirements imposed by the European Aviation Safety Agency are continuing to take up a lot of management time at TAG and other aircraft operators. TAG recently became the first business aviation company to achieve EASA’s stage-two requirements for its safety management system.
With the rapid development of China’s economy, business aviation is viewed by many in the country as a so-called “Blue Ocean industry” with vast potential. As estimated by Embraer in its last market forecast, by 2020 China may represent a market for as many as 635 business jets. Bombardier is even more optimistic, projecting a need for almost 1,000 more business jets in the coming decade.
The European Aviation Safety Agency gave its first-ever approval to an electronic flight bag (EFB) with charting on November 15 when it said yes to Jeppesen’s Flight Deck Pro and Mobile TC Pro apps for iPad and iOS. The EASA approval tumbles a significant hurdle for the Boeing Flight Services unit to gain the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) approval needed to sell the new technology to European airlines. The new EFBs can be used in all phases of flight.
New data published by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) appears to confirm the widespread view among executive charter operators that few people are prosecuted for illegally flying for hire in Britain. Between April 1, 2011, and March 31, 2012, the CAA pursued 16 prosecutions for various breaches of UK aviation rules, only one of which was for illegally conducting a public-transport flight without holding an air operator certificate (AOC).
StandardAero Singapore’s helicopter operation has moved into a larger, newly constructed facility located in Seletar Aerospace Park. The new 32,300-sq-ft facility has additional floor space to accommodate future business growth. Staffed by 26 employees, StandardAero Singapore supports the Rolls-Royce 250 with component repair, field service and training.
In a July 19 address to the African Ministerial Conference on Aviation, ICAO Council president Roberto Kobeh Gonzalez attempted to calm some of the world’s concerns about aviation safety in the region.