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Flight training from unlicensed aerodromes

Flight training from unlicensed aerodromes

Flight Training from Unlicensed Aerodromes

From 14th April 2010 the regulation that has required that certain flight training and testing must be carried out from a licensed aerodrome will cease to exist and so these activities will be able to be conducted from unlicensed aerodromes as well as licensed.

Microlight training and testing has been carried out from unlicensed aerodromes under an exemption from the regulation that has been renewed each year. There will no longer be a requirement for the exemption and so none will be issued in future.

The change does not absolve the aircraft operators and commanders from any responsibility. The onus will be firmly on those conducting flight training to satisfy themselves that that the aerodromes used are adequate for the activity carried out. The CAA publish a guidance document entitled CAP 428 Safety Standards at Unlicensed Aerodromes which will be updated to reflect the change to the law. All those involved with flight training at unlicensed aerodromes are advised, and expected, to read CAP 428 and use it to assess their training and testing activities.

There will also be a significant change to the low flying rules. After 14th April 2010 it will be legal to practice approaches at an unlicensed aerodrome to within 500 feet of a vehicle, vessel, person or structure. Until this change to the Rule is made it is only legal to come within this distance when practicing approaches at Licensed or Government aerodromes.

Pilots should understand that this change to the regulations is not an opportunity to fly low and close just for the fun of it, it is strictly only for training purposes and should not be abused as an excuse for reckless flying.

Full details of the proposed change to the ANO are available from the CAA web site www.caa.co.uk and search for Air Traffic Services Information Notice 178.

CAP 428 is available at www.caa.co.uk/cap428.

Geoff Weighell

06/04/2010


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