Consultation draft - proposed flight test and proficiency check standards in the Part 61 MOS (CD 1619FS)

Closed 3 Oct 2017

Opened 5 Sep 2017

Results updated 2 Mar 2018


We received a total of eight submissions, of which seven respondents consented to having their comments published on the CASA website.

Key feedback

The more detailed responses were received from aeroplane operators and this is reflected in the feedback.

In addition, general feedback was received on flight reviews. This feedback was not included as part of the analysis as it is outside the scope of this proposal. However, it is being taken into account in the review of the flight review standards.

Other feedback indicated that any reference to short field landings should be removed from the standards.

The following is a summary of the feedback received on the proposed flight test and proficiency checks standards.

Simulator instructor rating flight test

  • The rating is orientated around the general aviation instructor and does not adequately support the air transport sector.
  • Remove the requirement to demonstrate competency operating from a control seat for the grant of a simulator instructor rating, especially for the multi-crew pilot training endorsement. Rename the simulator instructor rating as synthetic flight instructor rating.

ATPL flight test

  • In paragraphs 3.8 (n), (o) and (p) permit oral questioning for operations outside of controlled airspace and at non-towered aerodromes.
  • In paragraph 3.1 (a) modify the 'plan an IFR flight' test item to reflect airline operations that use pre-prepared plans rather than the applicant having to plan a flight and include the requirement that they demonstrate competency interpreting the prepared plans.
  • In paragraphs 3.4 (a) and (b) modify the 'limited panel instrument flying' test items to reflect the technology and operation of all aircraft types including those with the latest instrument display systems.

Type rating multi engine aeroplane flight test

  • In paragraph 3.2 (e), incorporate standard instrument departure or published procedure
  • In subclause 3.4, include 3D instrument approach operation and missed approach.
  • In paragraph 3.5 (a), incorporate standard arrival procedure.
  • In subparagraph 3.5 (b) (i), remove the VFR operations option.
  • In subclause 3.4, consider including a holding pattern requirement.
  • In paragraphs 3.4 (h) and 3.6 (c), clarify that only two go-around procedures are required for the test, including one involving all engines and one involving one engine inoperative.
  • In paragraphs 3.4 (b) and 3.7 (c) and (d), for flight tests conducted in a simulator, consider removing the pre-flight inspection, post-flight secure aircraft and administration test items.

Cruise Relief co-pilot type rating flight test

  • Remove all items in the test that relate to operations below flight level 200.
  • In schedule 2 training standards for the rating enhance the requirements including terminal areas operations.
  • In subclause 3.2 include additional test-specific activities in the standards for (i) TCAS manoeuvre and recovery and (ii) manage a depressurisation.

Instructor rating proficiency check

In relation to checks conducted in a flight simulator, the standards are more orientated toward a check conducted in an aircraft rather than in a flight simulator. The feedback recommends the standards be changed to orient the check to a flight simulator environment.

Schedules 5 and 6 - current standards

Feedback on the current standards in schedules 5 and 6 of the Part 61 MOS rather than on the proposed standards was received from a helicopter operator.

Feedback included the following standards which are in Schedule 2 of the Part 61 MOS.

  • For full panel and limited panel instrument flying, amend the standards to require the demonstration of competency to be in conditions with a visible horizon for the examiner or instructor to use.
  • For limited panel manoeuvres in unit IFL, move the requirement for re-establishing visual flight to the full panel unit IFF.
  • For the instrument proficiency check standard, amend the standards so that only holding pattern and one missed approach is required.
  • Clarity is required to differentiate between an unlit helicopter landing site that is in the vicinity of lighting versus one that is away from surrounding cultural lighting.
  • Include a requirement to continually use white (or infrared as applicable) searchlight to effectively identify obstructions and hazards in the approach manoeuvre.
  • Amend the abnormal and emergency situations, and those involving loss of visual references in element NVI.3 to reflect the situations described in Civil Aviation Order (CAO) 82.6.
  • For the night vision imaging system proficiency check:
    • Remove the requirement to check the elements in IFF and IFL if the applicant has a current helicopter instrument rating and meets the approach recent experience requirements for at least one of the approach operation endorsement.
    • Remove the limit the requirement to conduct take-off and climb-out manoeuvres, and approach and landing manoeuvres for sloping terrain and not for pinnacle or ridge terrain.
  • For the night VFR rating, recommend 'conduct a traffic pattern at night' be included in the helicopter standard as it is for the aeroplane standard.

Future direction

Modifications are being made to the proposed flight test and proficiency check standards to incorporate the suggestions put forward in the submissions.

For the cruise relief type rating, the test standards will be modified. However, the test would include items where the pilot would be required to demonstrate competency operating the aircraft in a descent, arrival, approach, missed approach and landing as an emergency condition such as an incapacitation event.

The feedback that was received on the practical flight standards in schedule 2 of the MOS will be taken into consideration during the planned future consultation on those standards.

Where the feedback is relevant to the flight test and proficiency check standards, they will be incorporated into the amended flight test and proficiency check standards.

Many of the items in the responses also apply to the helicopter sector and they will be amended accordingly.

Published responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.


CASA is proposing changes to the flight test and proficiency check standards, as prescribed in Schedules 5 and 6 of the Part 61 Manual of Standards (MOS).

Examiners have found the current format of modifications and references to Schedule 2 to be an inflexible means by which to apply the flight test and proficiency check standards. Sometimes aircraft equipment, operational practice or location can lead to difficulties in applying the standards.

CASA has also found instances where several test and check items were addressing a common activity or manoeuvre, but used different terms. For example, items for planning, briefing, and conducting take-off and departure procedures for various tests and checks were written in different ways even though all of the items were targeting the same matters. As a result, and in conjunction with an update to the Flight Examiners’ Handbook (FEH), CASA is proposing to update the Schedule 5 and 6 flight test and proficiency check standards.

Why your views matter

CASA recognises the valuable contribution that community and industry consultation makes to the regulatory development process. This consultation draft sets out the proposed changes to the Part 61 MOS. The draft amendment instrument can be found at the end of this page in 'related documents'.

A copy of the briefing paper is provided below. You can read it on this screen using the scroll bar or save it to your computer using the popup options. The draft instrument is available in the 'related' section further down this page. 

Please read the documents before providing your feedback in the online survey.

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What happens next

At the end of the response period for public comment, we will register and review each comment and submission received through the online response form, but will not acknowledge individual responses. We will consider the submissions to this Consultation Draft before making any change to the regulations or other legislative instrument.

We will make all submissions publicly available on the CASA website unless a respondent requests that their submission remain confidential. Information about how we consult and how to make a confidential submission is available on the CASA website.

When the CD submissions are published we will also publish a summary of consultation. The summary of consultation will summarise the feedback received, detail our plans for future policy, and outline any further consultation or planned rule making on this subject.

If we do change the rules, we will not publish an NFRM; information about the rule making will be available in the Explanatory Statement that is published with the final rule on the Federal Register of Legislation. You can subscribe to our consultation and rule making mailing list to be notified of future consultation or rule making on this subject.


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