Draft AC 21-32 v1.0 - Approval of equipment used for human external cargo operations

Closed 20 Oct 2021

Opened 6 Oct 2021


Rotorcraft external load operations in Australia may be conducted as:

  • Part 133—Australian air transport operations—rotorcraft


  • Part 138—Aerial work operation

The Advisory Circular (AC) provides guidance about the various pathways and options for the approval of Personnel Carrying Device Systems (PCDS) used with Human External Cargo (HEC) capable rotorcraft when performing HEC operations.

The AC outlines the types of approvals available and the associated manufacturing process requirements.

It also outlines how generic fall arrest items such as carbineers and ropes can be used as part of the PCDS. 

This AC will be of interest to:

  • operators of Australian registered rotorcraft conducting human external load operations
  • maintenance organisations that modify rotorcraft for external load operations
  • designers of rotorcraft modifications
  • authorisation holders of articles that are to be used during external load operations.

Why your views matter

CASA recognises the valuable contribution that community and industry consultation makes to the regulatory development process. For this reason, we are seeking feedback on whether this initial AC on approval of equipment used for human external cargo operations, provides adequate guidance on pathways and options for the approval of rotorcraft external load systems, and is fit for purpose.

A copy of the draft AC is provided below as well as appearing on the designated page of the survey.

Please read the AC document before providing your feedback.

Note: The MS Word document is not to be used as an emailed submission, unless there are extenuating circumstances, and this form of submission has been agreed to by the consultation project lead.

What happens next

At the end of the response period for public comment, we will review each comment and submission received. We will make all submissions publicly available on our website, unless you request your submission remain confidential. We will also publish a Summary of Consultation which summarises the feedback received, outlines any intended changes and details our plans for the AC.


  • Air transport operations – rotorcraft (Part 133)
  • Aerial work operator (Part 138)
  • CASR Subpart 21.J approved design organisation
  • CASR Subpart 21.M authorised persons


  • Equipment standards
  • Human External Cargo (HEC)