Proposed changes to the rules for smaller aeroplanes air transport operations - Part 119 and 135 of CASR (CD 1805OS)

Closes 2 Sep 2018

Opened 3 Aug 2018


The proposed rule changes for smaller aeroplane air transport operations aim to improve safety and consolidate requirements to make them more operationally focused and easier to use.  

The smaller aeroplane rules are applicable to aeroplanes that weigh less than 8,618kg maximum take-off weight (MTOW) and have a maximum operational passenger seating configuration (MOPSC) of nine or less.  

In 2016, CASA conducted a sector risk profile for this sector. It found that the charter accident rate is eleven times higher than public transport (RPT) based on analysis of data from 2006 to 2013. The average annual cost of accidents and fatalities was estimated to be about $15.3 million. The leading accident category was collision with terrain and a common contributor was ineffective or inadequate monitoring and checking.  

The new rules aim to:

  • reduce the safety differential between charter and regular public transport operations through common rules that apply to all air transport operations but are scaled for size and / or complexity
  • apply certain safety enhancements across all air transport operations such as crew training and checking requirements, human factors training, terrain avoidance warning systems for some aircraft in line with common regulatory requirements internationally and a scalable safety management system
  • permit existing charter operators to conduct fixed scheduled flights for the general public (an ability currently requiring an RPT AOC)
  • introduce medical transport requirements to replace the current ambulance function aerial work requirements in line with international best practice and industry feedback
  • establish higher levels of International Civil Aviation Organization compliance to make operating internationally simpler

There are two Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CASR) Parts relevant to smaller aeroplane air transport operators:

  • Part 119 – baseline certification standards and general rules for air transport operations
  • Part 135 – operating rules for smaller aeroplane air transport operators.

The rules are contained in both the 135 CASR part and its associated manual of standards (MOS).

All aircraft will also operate under CASR Part 91, the general operating and flight rules, which was consulted in March/April 2018.

Register for our special webinar on the proposed smaller aeroplane air transport rules to be held on 15 August 7-8pm AEST.

What Happens Next

Parts 119 and 135 form part of the suite of six interlinked and interdependent certification and flight operating regulations (the other elements of this suite are Parts 91, 133, 121 and 138). Consultation for Part 133 – rotorcraft air transport operations, is open and closes on 21 August 2018. Consultation for Part 121 – larger aeroplane air transport operations, is open and closes on 2 September 2018. These consultations will also include further consultation on Part 119.

It is proposed that the certification and flight operations regulations will be made in late 2018. Following this, CASA proposes to commence the flight operations regulations in early 2021, with the commencement date aligned with the Aeronautical Information Regulation and Control (AIRAC) cycle and Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP) update. However, we are aware that some changes will have greater industry impact than others. Therefore, we are seeking industry feedback to help identify specific changes where you may need additional time to comply.

Why We Are Consulting

As part of the development of the smaller aeroplane air transport rules, we are consulting with the aviation community to ensure the rules will work in practice as they are intended.

How this consultation works

You will be asked to comment on Part 119, Part 135 and the Part 135 Manual of Standards (MOS). We have included a series of documents to help navigate through the regulations which are attached in the ‘Related’ section at the bottom of this page. In particular, the Summary of Proposed Changes (SPC) outlines how the proposed regulations will work together and the specific changes in each document. There are also draft Acceptable Means of Compliance and Guidance Materials that will give greater context to the proposed changes.

We have also provided a guide to the main changes on the pages where you can comment, with references to where they appear in the regulations.

Recent industry feedback

Last year CASA established an Aviation Safety Advisory Panel made up of industry representatives. In June, the panel convened a technical working group (TWG) to evaluate drafts of the rules.

The group made a number of suggestions and highlighted issues which CASA has sought to address in these consultation drafts. The specific issues raised and the preliminary CASA response to these issues can be found at: CASA has refined the draft regulations based on feedback.

Part 135 has been extensively consulted throughout its development. Draft regulations were first published in 2003, again in 2009 and most recently in 2012. In 2013 there was additional consultation in relation to air ambulance flights. The current draft has been revised to reduce industry impact and reflect changes in International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards.

The most recent comprehensive consultation on Part 119 was conducted during 2012 with additional consultation in 2014–15 on scenic flights and small cargo operations.

Please note: The draft of Part 119 attached to this consultation does not incorporate any changes proposed or resulting from the scenic flight and small cargo consultations. As CASA proposes to commence the flight operations regulations in early 2021, we plan to consult further with the aviation community regarding scenic flights and small cargo operations in 2019 to finalise policy in this area.

Using an iPad

If you are using an iPad to complete the survey you will be asked to 'download the relevant PDF'. Depending on the software you have on your iPad you may need to download the free viewer to review the single document PDF files. Where a file is a 'multi-file or portfolio PDF you will need to source the Adobe free view - available from iTunes.  More information on the 'how to' is available below in 'related' section below.

Give Us Your Views


  • CASA Staff
  • Aerodrome operators
  • Air operators
  • Airworthiness organisations
  • Instructors and flight examiners
  • Flight training organisations
  • Engineers
  • Pilots
  • Air traffic controller
  • Foreign operator
  • Traveling public / passengers


  • Airworthiness / maintenance
  • Airspace and infrastructure
  • Air travel
  • Dangerous goods
  • Emergencies and incident reporting
  • Human factors
  • Safety management systems
  • Licensing
  • Operational standards
  • Aircraft certification and design
  • Flight training
  • Aviation medicine
  • Cabin safety