Parliamentarians call for fatigue regulations with safety as a primary concern, based on scientific evidence
MISSISSAUGA, ON, June 21, 2017 /CNW/ - The Air Canada Pilots Association, representing more than 3,500 pilots, expressed gratitude to the Hon. Judy Sgro, Chair, and the members of Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities for their recommendations to improve aviation safety.
"The Committee's comprehensive report has just been released, and we are pleased to see a number of important recommendations that cut to the heart of important safety improvements for Canada's aviation industry," said Milt Isaacs, CEO of ACPA. "We agree with the Committee on many of their recommendations including the importance of: science-based fatigue regulations that consider safety first; alignment with international standards for runway end safety areas; urgent implementation of Transportation Safety Board of Canada safety recommendations; and adopting best practices in flight training."
Modernized Fatigue Regulations
The Parliamentary Committee's report recommends that updates to Canada's flight crew fatigue regulations be based on scientific evidence and with safety as a primary concern. ACPA strongly agrees, given that science has clearly established fatigue as a form of impairment. ACPA pilots support science-based measures that will improve the margin of safety for flight crews and their passengers.
300 Metre Runway End Safety Areas (RESA)
The report recommends Canada adopt the International Civil Aviation Organization's standard of a 300-metre runway end safety area (RESA) at the end of major airport runways. A RESA offers vital protection to planes and passengers in the event of an overrun or underrun. The Transportation Safety Board has investigated 16 runway overruns in Canada since 2010.
ACPA strongly supports this recommendation as Canada currently only has a handful of major airport runways that meet this international standard. For instance, Canada's busiest airport -- Toronto's Pearson International Airport, which is a hub for North American traffic -- does not have a single runway surface that complies with ICAO's recommended practice of a 300 M RESA or an alternative safety measure, despite a longstanding TSB recommendation for RESA that dates from its 2007 report on an Air France overrun incident.
TSB Air Safety Recommendations
ACPA fully supports the recommendation that Transport Canada expedite its response to the TSB's air safety-related recommendations, including addressing the current backlog. A timelier response to the TSB's urgent recommendations will serve to significantly improve aviation safety in Canada.
Finally, ACPA supports the recommendation that Transport Canada review best practices for flight training, and would be pleased to participate alongside other pilot associations in consultations on this important issue. One of the best safety measures available is a well-trained flight crew; it is critical that pilot training be regularly assessed to ensure it reflects the most modern safety standards.
Representing more than 3,500 members who fly passengers and cargo around the world on Air Canada and Air Canada rouge, ACPA is the largest single pilot association in Canada, and serves a diverse and engaged membership.
ACPA is a proud member of the safer skies coalition, which consists of more than 8,000 pilots across Canada in support of modernized fatigue rules based on science. For more information, visit www.saferskies.ca.
SOURCE Air Canada Pilots Association
For further information: Christopher Praught, Manager of Communications, Air Canada Pilots Association, Tel: 905-678-9008 x4010, [email protected]