...towards simpler, lighter, better regulations for GA
General Aviation is a high priority for EASA and is dedicating effort and resources towards creating simpler, lighter and better rules for General Aviation. Recognising the importance of General Aviation and its contribution to a safe European aviation system, EASA in partnership with the European Commission and other stakeholders has created a Road Map for Regulation of General Aviation. In short called the GA Road Map.
EASA recognises that existing regulations impacting General Aviation may not necessarily be proportional to the risk exposure of GA. Some of this regulation was intended to cover more demanding (in terms of safety) activities, such as commercial air transport operations. As a regulation is not necessarily the best tool to improve safety, the Agency put in place a number of safety promotion material and reference points, published on the Safety Management & Promotion page.
The Agency aims to bring positive change to the General Aviation community by simplifying existing regulations where possible, introducing flexible measures where necessary and developing safety promotion to address safety risks. This task will take time to be completed and it cannot be done by a single entity it can only be the result of a series of coordinated and harmonised actions from EASA, the European Commission, Member States, National Aviation Authorities, but also by associations and clubs. The process is not a sprint but a marathon.
EASA's Annual Safety Conference 2014, in Rome, October 2014, was dedicated to the topic of General Aviation. In his closing remarks, Patrick Ky, EASA Executive Director described the 6 commitments of EASA to the General Aviation community, promising the next progress report during the AERO 2015 exhibition.
GA Roadmap is part of EASA Vision 2020:
On 16 March 2015, EASA presented its vision for the future aviation safety regulatory system in Europe. Called Vision 2020, it envisions a more proportional, flexible and proactive regulatory system in Europe. The Opinion is based on the views of the stakeholders and is in line with the principles of the GA Safety Strategy. On the topic of General Aviation it provides a sound basis for a more proportionate and flexible approach to safety regulations. It will help pave the way for the adjustment of the definitions of the Basic Regulation and tackle the growing need for delegation of oversight responsibilities to user organisations or for giving privileges to qualified individuals. The GA community across the EU awaited the outcome of this process to improve the prospects for European GA.
On the General Aviation chapter (Section 2.2.1 of the Opinion), it is proposed to:
- Simplify the airworthiness certification and oversight system for small and low-risk GA.
- Introduce the necessary flexibility for the certification and oversight of small and low-risk GA by allowing the Competent Authorities of the Member States and EASA to delegate oversight and certification responsibilities or tasks to approved third parties (user organisations, federations, associations).
- Introduce the necessary flexibility for small and low-risk GA by introducing provisions which will allow possible deviations from existing requirements, where appropriate.
- Adjust the definitions of ‘commercial operation’ as well as ‘complex motor-powered aircraft’, as they are currently creating difficulties for GA.
- Leave the principal scope of Annex II unchanged, and only make some minor adjustments (e.g. glider definition), albeit with more flexibility (Section 2.2.3 of the Opinion).