Brexit Expo

Truly we are in strange times.

Earlier this year, I did the tour of the Royal Albert Hall.  Yes, I would recommend it even though it’s part of the standard London tourist trail.  The story of the building is fascinating.  How and why it got built.  The person to thank for it is Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the husband and consort of Queen Victoria.  This forward-thinking German was a great supporter of public education.

The legacy of the Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations of 1851, was the Hall and the Museums in that quarter of London.  The Crystal Palace was the first World’s Fair.  Albert died suddenly in December 1861.  Much of the money, coming from the Great Exhibition, that was allocated to build the Hall was spent on his memorial.

On the South Bank of the river Thames lies the legacy of the Festival of Britain.  This took place in the summer of 1951.  We need to remember that Britain was still in the grips of post-war food rationing[1] at that time.  The plan was to celebrate the centennial of the 1851 Great Exhibition.  Unlike the Great Exhibition, the Festival of Britain was about promoting British architecture, arts, science, technology and industry.  In late 1951, as Churchill was returned as MP, his first move was to clear the South Bank site believing the project to be socialist propaganda.

So, the history of great exhibitions and festivals is a chequered one.

The next World’s Fair is planned for 2020 in the UAE.  A site has been chosen between the cities of Dubai and Abu Dhabi.  132 Counties, including the UK, have announced their participation in the 2020 World’s Fair.

Today’s Conservative proposal for a 2022 Festival of Britain is strange to say the least.   Apparently, funds have been allocated and, in Party conference week, the PM is hoping to appease Brexit supporting MPs with this retro-adventure.  Unsurprisingly, Social Media is lighting up with ridicule.  Some see Theresa May dressed up as Britannia and handing out goodies to all commers.

Whatever the merits of large exhibitions and festivals surely it makes more sense to have a greater presence in world-wide events than it does to build domestic palaces?  If Brexit goes ahead or not, Britain must market what it does.  The audience is the world.  Shows of nationalism are unlikely to archive any positive or useful goals.  Just more division.

This light-weight Conservative proposal is misguided and wasteful.




Brexit and Aviation 35

The UK Government has published a round of aviation Technical Notices, laying out what the UK will do in the event of a “No Deal” Brexit.  No deal means no Withdrawal Agreement.  One thing I can do here is to highlight some of the responses to these “No Deal” papers.

ADS is a trade body for UK Aerospace, Defence, Security and Space companies[1].  They are trying to get the information out to the aviation and aerospace industries.  It really is a case of being prepared.

The airlines organisation, IATA warned on that the Government’s papers on a “No-Deal” exposed the “extreme seriousness” of what is at stake.  The UK would probably leave the European Common Aviation Area.  However, even if something is possible in theory, it doesn’t mean its going to happen.  So, the idea of all aircraft being grounded after Brexit day is more extremely improbable than unlikely.

Some commentators think that UK-EU flights and airport security may stay roughly the same in a “no deal” case, but this relies on the Government forming lots of mini mutual agreements with the EU to ensure continuity[2].  It’s a sort of let’s be good to each other even though we failed one negotiation and let’s do a “no deal” light.

Politically, the aviation papers reveal how much uncertainty remains just six months from Brexit day.  The result they have had not so much to provide guidance and public reassurance but to kick-off a stream of negative stories in the Press[3].

The professional aviation Press is none too complementary about the possibility of a “No Deal” outcome.  The Government papers seems to have confirmed theories that had already done the rounds[4].  Perhaps one is new and that concerns the Part-TCO safety authorisation.  Prior to being an EASA Member State, the UK did not have a Part-TCO regulation.  Now, the papers suggest that a new UK Part-TCO safety authorisation may be established.  No doubt that would be useful to bringing in much needed fees to fund all the new work coming the way of the UK CAA.

Several subjects have had no mention – yet.  Will aviation training schools have to change their workings?  Will cooperation on safety planning, occurrence reporting and accident investigation continue smoothly?  Will air traffic service providers continue to cooperate?

At the global level is likely that both EU and US will not want to change their current agreements.  Thus, the UK will need to fit in and prove that it’s effectively discharging its new responsibilities.  It’s evident that the UK CAA is recruiting staff and they will have much to do.









Brexit and Aviation 34

Another busy day of government publications.  Amongst the many papers to arrive have been the 3 on civil aviation published by the UK Department for Transport (DfT).   These are technical notices that set out plans put in place, in the “unlikely” event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.  These links are to the technical notices on:

  1. Aviation security if there’s no Brexit deal
  2. Aviation safety if there’s no Brexit deal
  3. Flights to and from the UK if there’s no Brexit deal

Generally, the advice is for the aviation industry to review potential implications for supply chains and staff with specialist qualifications.  The information shows the potential impact of a no deal scenario is extremely high.  There is a wish that, even with no Brexit deal there’s still enough mutual interests to keep all parts of aviation running.

However, for pan-European organisations this senario will be as destructive as an Icelantic volcano.  Estimates of costs rise rapidly for everyday that no deals are implemented, recognised and working.   The impact goes beyond just EU – UK relations because the EU’s existing agreements and working arrangements will no longer apply to the UK.  To get over this the UK is declaring its intention to recognise EU standards of security and safety.   Hopefully this will be enough for other nations aviation authorities to carry on regardless.

The UK CAA has published its own information that covers the subjects in more detail[1].  Some of the questions and answers remain open.  The words: ask EASA, appear numerous times.

What is clear is that the implication of these technical measures is to duplicate activities.  Certificates and licences will need to exit in European form and in UK form.  A period of adaption is contemplated on the UK side, but the outcome will be the need for compliance with new national regulatory requirements.  It’s rather like turning the clock back to a time before the Joint Aviation Authorities (JAA).  There’s no guarantee that there will be mutual recognition even if there may be a common benefit in maintaining a level playing field.

There’s no aviation safety value in duplication.  In fact, there is a potential safety down side.  Given that there’s finite expertise and resources dedicated to safety work spreading those more thinly isn’t going to help anyone.  If there’s divergence in processes and procedures who knows what might fall down the cracks.

It’s worth saying that during all of this change in the UK the internal market for the EU27 will continue to work.  The citizens of the EU27 will continue to benifit from their common system for aviation safety and security.



Brexit and Airworthiness

Without going into the whole history of the last 50 years, there has been considerable success at harmonisation of aircraft certification rules in Europe.  Not only at a level of the requirements and specifications to be applied by the processes and procedures used too.

Now to consider a “no deal” outcome of the negotiations between the EU and UK.   This is the case where there are no working arrangements or informal agreements of any kind on the day after the assigned leaving date of leaving the European Union (EU).

In accordance with the Chicago Convention there are a series of certificates that are mandatory in international civil aviation.  Those concerning aircraft airworthiness are in the articles of the convention and its Annexes, most particularly Annex 8 and its associated manual.

The complete framework of European aviation regulation is compliant with these standards.  So, a European aircraft Type Certificate (TC) or a Certificate of Airworthiness (CofA) or an Airworthiness Release Tag (EASA Form 1) is recognised across the globe.  To build this European system, decades of cooperative working and confidence building were invested.  It’s is not only that the rules and procedures are agreed and correct, it’s also that their implementation delivers the desired results.

In a “no deal” outcome of the negotiations between the EU and UK the EU Regulations responsible for this regulatory system no longer apply in the UK.  Now, I have assumed that the technical content of these regulations will be adopted lock-stock and barrel into UK law.  Thus, the situation may be that the UK will not change any aspect of the rules and procedures for the issuance of a certificate on the day after Brexit.

The significant difference that arises is that the certificate issued will be a National certificate and not a European one.  Thus, it will not be automatically mutually accepted by EU Member States.  For existing certificates, the UK may choose to adopt all those that exist at the time of change.  Nevertheless, each one of these would need to be accepted as a UK National certificate.

The European system does validate certificates from “third countries” but this is usually done under the framework of a working arrangement or a Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreement (BASA).  If no such arrangement or agreement exists, then either there’s no recognition or an ad-hoc grandfathering of privileges might prevail.  Such ad-hoc measure might be time limited and contingent upon the conduct of an audit.

In any event the movement of aircraft and related products, parts and appliances between the UK and EU Member States will not be as free as it is now.   In the extreme worst case “no deal” there will be no movement.   This would be commercially catastrophic for all sides.

Speculating about ad-hoc or emergency measure is difficult.  One analogy that could shed light is that of the position of Turkey.  In 2009, the Joint Aviation Authorities (JAA) was disbanded.  Non-EU members of the JAA like; Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein joined the European system.  Turkey did not.  There is a working arrangement between the EASA and Turkish DGAC[1] but it is limited.   Relationships like these are subject to continuing negotiations which are not without frustration.



Deal or No Deal?

These articles are written to consider a “no deal” outcome of the negotiations between the EU and UK.   This is the case where there are no working arrangements or informal agreements of any kind on the day after the assigned leaving date of leaving the European Union (EU).  Several assumptions are made in this article:

  1. Agreements and arrangements existing prior to 1973 have been superseded, are obsolete and are not applicable;
  2. UK will remain a member of the intergovernmental bodies; like EUROCONTROL and ECAC;
  3. UK will notify ICAO of its change of status in respect of Annexes to the Chicago Convention;
  4. UK will take EU legislation into National legislation via a series of Statutory Instruments;
  5. EU will view UK as a “third country” and
  6. There is a common interest in adhering to international norms.

Today, civil aviation is a shared competence within the EU.  That implies that if there is no specific EU legislation addressing a subject then National regulations prevail.  Therefore, a good starting point is to consider the current directly applicable EU legislation.

In the regulatory spectrum there is a Basic Regulation and a series of implementing Regulations.  Each Part to each implementing Regulation has its own Acceptable Means of Compliance and Guidance Material (AMC/GM).  These considered to be non-binding “soft-law.  Additionally, Certification Specifications (CSs) are also related to the implementing Regulations, like AMC/GM they are non-binding.

These Regulation extend over Airworthiness, Air Operations, Personnel Licensing, Air Navigation Services (ANS), Air Traffic Management (ATM), Rules of the Air, Aerodromes and Accident Investigation.

Recently, the Basic Regulation (EC) No 216/2008 has been repealed and replaced with Regulation (EU) 2018/1139 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 4 July 2018 on common rules in the field of civil aviation and establishing a European Union Aviation Safety Agency, and amending Regulations (EC) No 2111/2005, (EC) No 1008/2008, (EU) No 996/2010, (EU) No 376/2014 and Directives 2014/30/EU and 2014/53/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council, and repealing Regulations (EC) No 552/2004 and (EC) No 216/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council and Council Regulation (EEC) No 3922/91.

Here’s a list of pertinent EU Regulations with their former references:

Initial Airworthiness (Part 21).

Commission Regulation (EU) No 748/2012 of 03/08/2012 laying down implementing rules for the airworthiness and environmental certification of aircraft and related products, parts and appliances, as well as for the certification of design and production organisation.

Additional Airworthiness Specifications.

Commission Regulation (EU) 2015/640 of 23/04/2015 on additional airworthiness specifications for a given type of operations and amending Regulation (EU) No 965/2012.

Continuing Airworthiness.

Commission Regulation (EU) No 1321/2014 on the continuing airworthiness of aircraft and aeronautical products, parts and appliances, and on the approval of organisations and personnel involved in these.

Air Crew.

Commission Regulation (EU) No 1178/2011 of 3 November 2011 laying down technical requirements and administrative procedures related to civil aviation aircrew pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 216/2008 of the European Parliament.

Air Operations.

Commission Regulation (EU) No 965/2012 of 5 October 2012 laying down technical requirements and administrative procedures related to air operations pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 216/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council.

Third Country Operations (TCO).

Commission Regulation (EU) No 452/2014 of 29 April 2014 laying down technical requirements and administrative procedures related to air operations of third country operators pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 216/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council.

Air Navigation Services (ANS) common requirement.

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1035/2011 of 17 October 2011 laying down common requirements for the provision of air navigation services.

ATM/ANS safety oversight.

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1034/2011 of 17 October 2011 on safety oversight in air traffic management and air navigation services.

ATCO – Air Traffic Controllers Licensing.

Commission Regulation (EU) 2015/340 of 20 February 2015 laying down technical requirements and administrative procedures relating to air traffic controllers’ licences and certificates pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 216/2008.

Airspace Usage requirements.

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1332/2011 of 16 December 2011 laying down common airspace usage requirements and operating procedures for airborne collision avoidance.

Standardised European Rules of the Air (SERA)

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 923/2012 of 26/09/2011 laying down the common rules of the air and operational provisions regarding services and procedures in air navigation.


Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 139/2014 of 12/02/2014 laying down requirements and administrative procedures related to aerodromes pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 216/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council.

Accident Investigation.

Regulation (EU) No 996/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 October 2010 on the investigation and prevention of accidents and incidents in civil aviation and repealing Directive 94/56/EC Text with EEA relevance.

Occurrence Reporting.

Regulation (EU) No 376/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 3 April 2014 on the reporting, analysis and follow-up of occurrences in civil aviation, amending Regulation (EU) No 996/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council and repealing Directive 2003/42/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council and Commission Regulations (EC) No 1321/2007 and (EC) No 1330/2007 Text with EEA relevance.

There’s no doubt that the above list gives an impression of complexity.  That said, a few minutes looking at National legislation immediately gives the same impression.   In civil aviation, not everyone needs to know everything.  Clearly, engineers need to know about airworthiness, pilots and air traffic controllers need to know about licencing and companies need to know about organisation approvals.

Keeping up-to-date requires attention to detail.  At the heart of these Regulations is the international framework provided by the Chicago Convention.  In that respect, the scope for change in the content of these Regulations, even when incorporated in UK legislation, is limited.  Most of the listed Regulations received much input from the UK in their formation.

That is why I have assumed that even in a “no deal” situation the UK will take EU legislation into National legislation via a series of Statutory Instruments.  If this does not happen there is little that can be said about what might happen.   An unstable situation would result since it is not possible to replace all the above aviation regulation with another new set in the time remaining.

Next my articles will address each subject in turn.


Brexit and Aviation 33

Today, I’d like to note a couple of items that shed light on the peculiar predicament of these times.

UK Parliament has an “Exiting the European Union Committee[1]” that is appointed by the House of Commons to examine the expenditure, administration, and policy of the Department for Exiting the European Union and related matters falling within the responsibilities of associated public bodies. That’s a mouthful but it’s a committee that considers the details of the Brexit activities that the UK Government are undertaking.

Today, this committee published a report titled: The progress of the UK’s negotiations on EU withdrawal (June to September 2018), Ninth Report of Session 2017–19, Report, together with formal minutes relating to the report – HC 1554.  Love the Parliamentary language.  It’s not designed as a light bed time read.   As I was scanning the pages for interesting material on aviation I came across the reference to a “BREXIT – Risk Assessment” by AIRBUS from June.  I’d not seen this high-level 2-page document before.  Then came the moment I nearly fell off my chair.  To quote the text:

“Every week of unrecoverable delay would entail material working capital impact, re-allocation cost, cost for inefficient work, penalty payments to customers and up to €1B weekly loss of turnover. Despite the incremental stocks, the disruptions in a no deal Brexit situation are likely to add up to several weeks; potentially translating into a multi-billion impact on Airbus.”

My first though was – that must be a typo.  One billion a week!  Now, I know that AIRBUS has a healthy aircraft order book, but those costs are phenomenal.  Potentially a dreadful waste that no sensible company would put up with for any longer than was necessary.  I believe that would mean the UK losing its position as major civil aerospace manufacturing Country in short order.

The second item that caught my eye was the letter that ADS[2] got having written to the European Commission about the need for technical discussions to take place between the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to prepare for Brexit.  Basically, the formal answer is that this is on hold.  I don’t find that the least bit reassuring given the time to do something useful is ebbing away.   This regulatory preparation is important for either of the two scenarios – that’s a Withdrawal Agreement is ratified or that “no deal” is agreed before withdrawal date.





Brexit and Aviation 32

2903_brexitTuesday, chief #Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier will brief the EU 27 Member States Ministers about the ongoing talks with the UK[1].

“The Ministers will discuss the state of play of the negotiations, concerning both the completion of the work on withdrawal issues and the discussions on the framework for future EU-UK relations.  Ministers will also look at the annotated draft agenda for the next meeting of the European Council (Article 50) of 18 October 2018.”

An agreement on a future relationship can only be negotiated and concluded once the UK has become a “third country” with respect to the EU.  That’s after 31 March 2019.

Additionally, during their EU27 Leaders’ summit in Salzburg on 19 – 20 September 2018 hosted by the Federal Chancellery of Austria there will be a discussion on #Brexit.  The discussions during this informal summit will be reflected in the work and the conclusions of the next meetings of the European Council.

The preparedness notices related to aviation, published by the EU in January[2] and April[3] this year continue to be applicable.  Yet, we have not seen a formal UK public response to these notices.  With such slow progress the once-unthinkable prospect of a “no-deal” #Brexit is becoming a real one.

These notices set out the consequences of the withdrawal of the UK from the EU without a formal, ratified agreement.   The implications are stark.

Aviation is undergoing major changes, with challenges like; the growth of air traffic, economic and environmental pressures, digitalisation, new technologies, drones, cybersecurity and other security issues.   All of these are pan-European challenges.  None of them can successful be addressed by one Nation alone.  The regulatory framework in which aviation operates is a key factor in its performance.  The chaos that a “no deal” #Brexit may bring will impact this significantly.







Brexit and Aviation 31

It’s now under 200 days until the end of the Art. 50 Brexit negotiating period.  I’m guessing that’s why we have had an absolute deluge of technical guidance papers popping out of the UK Government[1].  Although many are in the “unlikely event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal” it’s almost as if that’s the aim.  Incidentally, some papers drop the “unlikely” altogether.

If only this huge effort could have been channelled towards something useful.  Certainly, to apply so much civil service effort to health and education would have been a much better idea.

13 September 2018 has been a busy day for the Government’s publications people.  As yet, there’s no paper on my favourite subject: Aviation.  That’s still in the works.

There’s a hint of what maybe to come.  Here’s some words form the paper on vehicle Type Approval.

“After March 2019 if there’s no deal.  In a no deal scenario, type-approvals issued in the UK would no longer be valid for sales or registrations on the EU market. EC type-approvals issued outside of the UK, would no longer be automatically accepted on the UK market.  This means that affected manufacturers would need to ensure that they have the correct type-approval for each market.”

So, duplication, extra costs and other such waste is on the way.

Here’s a random list of the papers published:

Haulage permits and trailer registration

Arrangements for future haulage permit and trailer registration schemes after leaving the European Union (EU).

UK nationals in the EU: essential information

Information on the rights and status of UK nationals living and travelling in the European Union (EU).

Passport rules for travel to Europe after Brexit

Advice for British passport holders in the unlikely event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

How to prepare if the UK leaves the EU with no deal

Guidance on how to prepare for Brexit if there’s no deal.

‘No deal’ Brexit advice for businesses only trading with the EU

HMRC letters to VAT-registered businesses only trading with the EU that explain changes to customs, excise and VAT in the unlikely event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

European Regional Development Funding if there’s no Brexit deal

How current and future European Regional Development Fund projects would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Trading goods regulated under the ‘New Approach’ if there’s no Brexit deal

How trading in harmonised goods regulated under the ‘New Approach’ would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Upholding environmental standards if there’s no Brexit deal

How businesses and others regulated through environmental quality standards would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Travelling to the EU with a UK passport if there’s no Brexit deal

Check whether you would be affected by changes to rules for British citizens travelling to some European countries after March 2019 if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Recognition of seafarer certificates of competency if there’s no Brexit deal

How seafarers would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Merger review and anti-competitive activity if there’s no Brexit deal

How merger review and investigations into anti-competitive activity would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal

Accessing public sector contracts if there’s no Brexit deal

To explain how existing or potential bidders for UK public contracts and public sector buyers would be able to access and publish future public procurement contract opportunities if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Using and trading in fluorinated gases and ozone depleting substances if there’s no Brexit deal

How businesses dealing with fluorinated gases (F-Gases) and ozone depleting substances (ODS) would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

European Social Fund (ESF) grants if there’s no Brexit deal

How organisations receiving European Social Fund (ESF) grants would be affected if the UK leaves the European Union (EU) with no deal.

Industrial emissions standards (‘best available techniques’) if there’s no Brexit deal

How standards for emissions from industry affected by the Best Available Technique (BAT) regime would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Reporting CO2 emissions for new cars and vans if there’s no Brexit deal

How vehicle manufacturers would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Travelling in the Common Travel Area if there’s no Brexit deal

Confirmation that the Common Travel Area arrangements and the associated rights and privileges of British and Irish citizens are protected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Vehicle type approval if there’s no Brexit deal

How vehicle and component manufacturers would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Driving in the EU if there’s no Brexit deal

How holders of UK driving licences would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Trading under the mutual recognition principle if there’s no Brexit deal

How importing and exporting non-harmonised goods would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Getting an exemption from maritime security notifications if there’s no Brexit deal

How shipping companies would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Travelling with a European Firearms Pass if there’s no Brexit deal

How travelling with a European Firearms Pass would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Data protection if there’s no Brexit deal

How the collection and use of personal data would change if the UK leaves the EU in March 2019 with no deal.

Trading in drug precursors if there’s no Brexit deal

How trading in drug precursor chemicals would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Appointing nominated persons to your business if there’s no Brexit deal

How appointing a nominated person to carry out duties on your behalf when selling certain goods would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Running an oil or gas business if there’s no Brexit deal

How oil and gas energy businesses would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Funding for UK LIFE projects if there’s no Brexit deal

How organisations receiving funding under the EU LIFE programme would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

What telecoms businesses should do if there’s no Brexit deal

How the telecoms regulatory framework would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Mobile roaming if there’s no Brexit deal

How leaving the EU without a deal would affect mobile roaming in EU and EEA countries.

Connecting Europe Facility energy funding if there’s no Brexit deal

How applying for and receiving energy grants from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) fund would be affected if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Broadcasting and video on demand if there’s no Brexit deal

How the rules for broadcasters and providers of video on demand services would change if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.




Will Brexit have a significant impact on civil aircraft accident investigation?  Probably not but it will not make it easier and there are some pitfalls.

Cooperation between independent National accident investigation bodies has been a part of their make up for a long time.  The international framework is dominated by ICAO Annex 13 to the Chicago Convention.  At its core these standards and recommended practices are stable, well used and gets an update about every decade.  In the UK, the Air Accidents Investigation Branch[1] (AAIB) investigates civil aircraft accidents and serious incidents.

In the EU, the applicable law is Regulation (EU) No 996/2010[2] – Investigation and prevention of accidents and incidents in civil aviation.   Before this Regulation came into being a Directive 94/56/EC encouraged investigators to work together and apply the standards of Annex 13.

To some extent EU Regulation 996/2010 was forged because of the need to define in law the relationship between the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the 28 independent investigation bodies in the EU.  The first Basic Regulation, that launched EASA had little to say on how the bodies should work together.

There’s a strong need for EASA, National Aviation Authorities (NAAs) and Civil Aviation Safety Investigation Authorities (as they are defined in the Regulation) to work together.

It becomes essential to be able to share confidential and sensitive information when accidents and incidents happen.  Corrective action often needs to be taken quickly.  It is the EASA and NAAs with industry who must take that action.  A sound legal framework helps to ensure that information flows and responsibilities are clear.

Post March 31, 2019 the above Regulation will cease to be directly applicable.  Naturally, the affected parties could choose to continue to apply its provisions.  Even in the worst case “no-deal” scenario it would be unthinkable that an arrangement to share confidential and sensitive information wouldn’t be worked out.

In addition, here’s several areas where attention may be needed.

The Regulation sets-up a European Network of Civil Aviation Safety Investigation Authorities.  Will UK AAIB continue to participate in that network?

EASA sets standards and approves Cockpit Voice Recorders (CVR) and Flight Data Recorders (FDR).  Will UK AAIB be consulted on the amendments to standards?

Will the status of UK Investigation Reports and Safety Recommendations remain the same?

[1] AAIB is a branch of the Department for Transport.




The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) was formally established on 27 September 2002 and become operational one year later.  The main objectives of the EU were strongly supported by the aeronautical industry.  It was to create a body capable of ensuring a uniform, high level of aviation safety and independent of national interests.  This included the free movement of aeronautical products and the automatic recognition of certificates.  EASA was given the power to carry out legally binding certification tasks, overcoming the limitations of the Joint Aviation Authorities (JAA).

In the UK, organisation approvals have transitioned from national requirements BCARs[1] and JARs[2] to European rules as Regulation EU No 748/2012.  Part-21 subpart G of this Regulation concerns the production of aircraft or engines or other products.  This certification of production organisations[3] is for the demonstration of their capability and means to meet their airworthiness obligations.  It’s also a way to confer specified associated privileges.

It is worth noting that organisation approvals issued or recognised by the UK in accordance with the JAA system, and valid before 28 September 2003, where accepted as complying with the above EU Regulation.  So, for production organisations operating in Europe, the transition from the JAA systems to the EASA system was a progressive development.

Today, European National Aviation Authorities (NAAs) need to have the resources necessary to undertake the approval of organisations.  Once initiated, this means that the NAA and approved organisation have an on-going relationship for, at least, as long as any of their products are in-service.

The EASA Form 1 is the Authorised Release Certificate released by a Part-21 POA holder for stating that a product, a part, or a component was manufactured in accordance with approved design data.

Post March 31, 2019, Regulation EU No 748/2012 will not apply in the UK.  However, for continuity it may be adopted as part of a Withdraw Agreement and taken-up in UK legislation.  In the case of a “no-deal” scenario the situation is unclear.  Any of the privileges that come from a European POA remain in doubt.  I assume we will have a National POA with National privileges that may or may not be accepted/recognised by others.  With an accepted/recognised Authorised Release Certificate products are deemed airworthy.  Without one they are not.

[1] British Civil Airworthiness Requirements (BCAR).

[2] Joint Aviation Requirements (JARs).

[3] Production Organisation Approval (POA).