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Archives for January 2015

CAAs are not all made the same…

Significant progress was made in 2014 to make regulation of the UK’s General Aviation sector more proportionate and evidence-based, says the UK Civil Aviation Authority.

It launched a new General Aviation Unit on 1 April 2014.

UK CAA says the unit is the latest demonstration of its determination to being a better regulator, reducing and improving its regulation of this key part of aviation in the UK.

A new aircraft manufacturer is born! The Light Aircraft Company (TLAC) in Norfolk has been approved to sell factory-built versions of its kit aircraft. They are the Sherwood Ranger (TLAC photo) classic biplane and two-seat high-wing Escapade 2 microlights

A new aircraft manufacturer is born! The Light Aircraft Company (TLAC) in Norfolk has been approved to sell factory-built versions of its kit aircraft. They are the Sherwood Ranger (TLAC photo) classic biplane and two-seat high-wing Escapade 2 microlights

“The unit is dedicated to effective regulation that supports and encourages a dynamic GA sector. It aims to make a key contribution to fulfilling the Government’s aspiration for the general aviation sector to enjoy a safety regulation system that imposes the minimum necessary burden and empowers individuals to make responsible decisions to secure acceptable safety outcomes, to make the UK the best country in the world for general aviation.”

In the first of what are promised to be regular updates to confirm its work in the GA area, the CAA said that in the previous 60 days it had:

♦  Launched proposals to simplify the initial testing process for experimental aircraft in the UK that will benefit small-scale aircraft designers and manufacturers, as well as encouraging the growth of aerospace excellence in new design concepts.

♦  Used the new proportionate approach to regulation to grant an approval to a UK microlight manufacturer that has made it financially viable to sell its aircraft as finished factory-built types rather than amateur-build kits.

♦  Published its finalised policy framework for GA. This will be used by the CAA as a basis for decisions around GA regulation, providing a transparent process for the GA community and others to follow. It explains how decisions will now be made based on evidence and risk.

♦  Scrapped the need for UK validation of design changes for Annex II aircraft via supplementary type certificates approved by a state with which the UK holds a bilateral agreement – such as the US or Canada. This means that the owner/operator of an aircraft can simply arrange for installation of the modification as per the approval and then get their maintenance organisation to certify its installation in the aircraft’s log-book.

♦  Withdrawn the overflight restriction from the permit operating limitations of factory-built, type-approved gyroplanes. This means they can be flown over congested areas, provided pilots can demonstrate they can manoeuvre their gyroplane clear of a built-up area should it suffer a failure preventing continued safe flight, such as an engine failure.

♦  Allowed owners of light aircraft to choose which fuel they use, including MOGAS, providing it is approved for their aircraft.

♦  Published clear guidance on restoring vintage aircraft.

All the changes support the CAA’s new top level principles for GA regulation:

♦  Only regulate directly when necessary and do so proportionately

♦  Deregulate where possible

♦  Delegate where appropriate

♦  Do not gold-plate, and quickly and efficiently remove gold-plating that exists

♦  Help create a vibrant and dynamic GA sector in the UK.

Grant Shapps, Government Minister Without Portfolio, said: “This is yet another good set of measures that will provide a much-needed boost to GA. They will allow for innovation to be unlocked in the sector, creating exciting new business opportunities that could bring jobs and growth to the UK”.

The UK CAA promises to publish similar 60-day updates throughout 2015, on 2 March; 1 May; 1 July; 1 Sep; and 2 Nov.