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CASA upsets Angel Flight – Who’s next??

Angel Flight has released the following to those who operate as pilots and general supporters.

Angel Flight did not have a public submission to the ASRR [Aviation Safety Regulatory Review] by David Forsyth. Maybe this is another group who were concerned about how CASA would deal with them if they made their views public.

And we still have not heard from the Minister [DPM Truss of Wide Bay] – I wonder if people are getting their local members to approach Mr. Truss to ensure the ASRR is implemented.

And again in this, where is the “Safety Case” by CASA.


Dear Angel Flight supporter,
You may all be aware of the discussion paper which has been issued by CASA in relation to charity flights. 
We have previously made personal representations to Minister Truss's senior advisers on this matter.  We take the position that the intervention of CASA is unnecessary, unwarranted, and unreasonable.  In short, there is nothing about our charity’s operation that needs addressing.  There has been no demonstrated safety issue arising out of Angel Flight’s already greater than 16,500 missions and therefore the 'safety authority' appears to be introducing, in the circumstances, bureaucratic intervention which does not appear to us to have any foundation.  
We will be addressing the discussion paper in more detail and submitting our response in late September.  All pilots have the right to respond individually or through their own aviation business/employer. Angel Flight will do so only as a charitable organisation, as we are not an aviation entity.
Yours sincerely,
Bill Bristow AM
Founder and Managing Director

The following is the basis of the CASA proposals:

DP 1317OS – Safety standards for community service flights conducted on a voluntary basis


In this DP, the term ‘community service flight’ is used to describe flights that are provided on a voluntary basis for public benefit. The term refers only to non-emergency flights provided as part of an organised voluntary or charitable activity and does not include the ‘one-off’ type of flight in which a pilot provides a flight to a friend or family member.

The purpose of this DP is to stimulate discussion and invite comment from interested members of the public and the aviation industry about how community service flights should be regulated under new Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CASR).

Volunteer organisations that bring together aircraft owners and pilots to provide voluntary public benefit flights to persons remote from some services have been operating in Australia since 2003. These organisations provide valuable community services by transporting community members to medical services that might otherwise be geographically out of their reach and, in some cases, transporting people to visit a hospitalised family member.

Community service flights are potentially open to a wide section of the community and are conducted by pilots with varying experience and qualification levels. Similarly, unless controls are put in place, the aircraft involved could potentially vary from an amateur-built experimental aircraft through to a turbine powered corporate aircraft. As community service flights become more widely used, the variable pilot qualifications and aircraft certification and maintenance standards become significant potential risk factors. CASA must consider and regulate appropriately to protect against an unreasonable level of risk in order to maintain an acceptable level of safety for the pilots, their passengers and the public.

This DP explains CASA’s considerations for selection of an appropriate standard and describes a number of potential options for future regulatory change. CASA recognises the valuable contribution that industry consultation makes to the regulatory development process. CASA issues this DP as the first stage of consideration. The purpose of a DP is to canvas a range of options that consider whether it is appropriate for an Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) to be required for community service flights, or if other mechanisms may be more appropriate for the purpose of accommodating these types of flights while ensuring that acceptable standards of safety are maintained.


18 August 2014

How to respond

Please forward your response to CASA by 10 October 2014 by one of the following means:

  • Post (no stamp required in Australia)
    Reply Paid 2005
    Standards Documentation Coordinator
    CASA’s Standards Development and Quality Assurance Branch
    Canberra ACT 2601, Australia
  • email (use the response format in the DP) mick.english@casa.gov.au

Additional information

Contact: Mick English, Project Leader

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