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Remote Tower technology is used, or planned to be used in the very next future, by more and more Air Navigation Service Providers.
Yet the ATM staff representative organizations ETF and ATCEUC do not believe that the regulatory approach to this subject by EASA is appropriate and effective. After months trying to convince EASA to reconsider the approach and to listen to our concerns, we decided time has come to go public with this joint public statement you find attached.
As part of the consultation on the performance scheme for RP3 that the Commission is currently undertaking, a study and workshop on ‘incentives’ was held recently. ETF, together with the other Professional Staff Organisations attended this workshop and have followed this up by submitting a joint written response. It is our firm view that incentives have no place in the performance scheme as these lead to short term and short sighted decisions, and distract from providing a responsible and effective long term service. We were pleased to work with our fellow staff representative organisations to provide a common staff view.
Discussions around the third reference period for the performance scheme are ongoing. It is more than time for the decision makers to update the EU regulations in order to make it a balanced and shared vision between all the stakeholders. In this context ETF has produced a position paper, summarizing the staff concerns and proposals.
Download here: RP3 Position Paper Final
Today, unmanned aircraft are being used among other things for aerial filming and photographing, safety inspections of pipelines or buildings or by farmers. Tests are being performed for delivery of goods or even transport of passengers.
The Aviation Strategy for Europe presented by the Commission in December 2015 states: "unmanned aircraft share the same airspace with other aircraft [and therefore] the safety of their operations must remain coherent with the overall aviation safety policy. Finally, unmanned aircraft operations must also be consistent with air traffic rules as laid down in the Common Rules of the Air."
Due to the rapid development of RPAS, the ETF strongly supports the inclusion of RPAS into the scope of the EASA Basic Regulation, as well as other regulatory initiatives aiming to ensure a safe co-existence of manned aircraft and RPAS in line with the principle "one sky – one safety".
download ETF views : etf-views-on-rpas-151216
ETF CO-SIGNS THE JOINT STAKEHOLDER STATEMENT ON DRONES
The ETF has joined other stakeholders from manned aviation in the call for a robust harmonized EU-wide regulatory safety framework for drones. The signatories also expressed their serious concern about the safety of manned aircraft in controlled and uncontrolled airspace.
At the same time, the ETF expects that all the safety and security aspects of drone operations will be addressed in the current revision of the EASA Basic Regulation.
The Remote Tower technology is advancing rapidly. It is important that regulators, Air Navigation Service Providers and staff engage on the subject to ensure that where remote towers are deployed, they are done so in a way that is safe, measured and with the appropriate consideration for staff. The technology has advanced ahead of proper regulation and a consistent and considered effort is now required by all stakeholders to ensure the appropriate regulatory environment is created. The social consequences need to be properly considered and the arising issues must be addressed. Whilst the ETF is generally supportive of the concept, provided it is deployed taking in to consideration the themes contained in this document, the ETF absolutely rejects the concept of simultaneous operations, i.e. the operation of more than one airport at the same time by one person. The ETF will continue to engage with all stakeholders and take a leading role as Remote Tower technology becomes more widely introduced
ETF welcomes the publication by EASA of the opinion on air traffic control officers (ATCO) licensing. It is the result of a long process to review the requirements first introduced after the initial legislation about Single European Sky (SES).
ETF has offered the Commission and EASA its contribution at every step of the process.
Whilst the modifications to the current regulation do not constitute a revolution, several changes will affect the day-to-day practice of thousands of workers around Europe. (more…)
In many European Member States, Flight Information Centres (FIC) are operated by dedicated Flight Information Service Officers (FISO). At the same time FISOs are also employed (as AFISOs) at Aerodrome Flight Information Service Units (AFIU) in several EU Countries. In some Members States these are ATCOs’ tasks delegated to FISOs. It clearly explains the safety role played by FISOs in the Civil Aviation Safety Chain. FISOs act as professionals and front line operators at the sharp end. Their work not only facilitates the safe operation of VFR flights, but also can have a safety impact on IFR flights, especially in terms of a decreased risk for airspace infringements. Specifically those operators, employed either at FICs or at AFIUs, provide the alert service and the information service, to “guarantee self-separation” between IFR (including commercial flights) and VFR traffic. (more…)