The UK Civil Aviation Authority warned on 3 March that a number of 2016 air shows will not go ahead unless they adopt the new safety measures being introduced by the regulator.
A review of air show safety has been carried out by the CAA, following the accident at Shoreham in August last year. ‘As part of the review,’ says the Authority ‘we have confirmed a series of additional safety measures that air shows must meet in order to go ahead, including carrying out enhanced risk assessments. Tougher checks and training requirements for pilots and display directors are also being introduced.’
‘Opposition to these changes has been voiced within the industry, with some in the air show community suggesting that the changes go too far or are not necessary. The CAA firmly believes that these changes are essential to ensure air shows are even safer for the millions of people who attend them each year. Unless the new requirements are met, the regulator will be unable to permit the shows to take place.’
Andrew Haines, CEO of the CAA, said, “We understand that people care passionately about air shows and we want all events to be a success, but we are also very clear that we will not compromise on safety. Enhancing the safety of air shows is essential and events that do not comply with the safety measures we are introducing simply won’t be able to go ahead.
“We welcome the opportunity to address with air show organisers any questions or concerns they have around their planned activity for 2016, but safety must be the priority and we are committed to doing all that we can to make air shows even safer in the years to come.”
The CAA’s air display review work continues and it expects to publish its final report in the coming weeks.