Guidelines for heliports - design and operation - Draft Advisory Circular 139.R-01 v3.0

Closes 22 Jul 2024

Opened 25 Jun 2024


We would like your feedback on amendments to our guidance for the design and operation of heliports in advisory circular (AC) 139.R-01.

The amendments to AC 139.R-01 include:

  • a new ‘General’ subsection (5.2.1) in section 5.2 – Markings and markers
  • a new subsection (5.2.18) for obstacle markings
  • updates to Chapter 6 to incorporate feedback from industry experts, inclusive of heliport operators and designers, on heliport emergency response
  • more information about the systems and equipment necessary to provide an immediate response in the case of an accident
  • a new Appendix C for Rescue and firefighting equipment and services risk assessment considerations
  • minor edits consequential to the amendments above.

The update to Chapter 6 is intended to provide greater clarity:

  • for determining the heliport operator’s intended emergency response and associated facilities in the event of abnormal helicopter operations
  • on the difference between emergency response facilities provided at the heliport needed to ensure the survivability of persons after a helicopter crash or any other incident that may result in a fire at the heliport
  • on systems needed to achieve the heliport operator’s emergency response objectives onsite, versus an offsite emergency response.

This AC applies to:

  • persons involved in the design, construction, and operation of heliports
  • proponents of heliports
  • helicopter owners/operators
  • planning authorities
  • aerodrome operators
  • CASA personnel.

Why your views matter

We recognise the valuable contribution that community and industry consultation makes to the regulatory development process. Your feedback will increase our understanding of your needs and whether the draft AC provides adequate guidance on heliport design considerations.

We are seeking feedback as to whether:

  • the content and structure of the guidance provided is clear and sufficient
  • it is fit for the purpose of supporting decision making on the infrastructure necessary for emergency response at heliports.

Related Documents

All documents related to this consultation are attached in the ‘Related’ section at the bottom of the overview page. They are:

  • Draft AC 139.R-01 v3.0
  • MS Word copy of online consultation for ease of distribution and feedback within your organisation.

Please read the AC document before providing your feedback.

Please submit your comments on the draft AC through the Consultation Hub using the survey provided. If you are unable to provide feedback this way, please email us at

What happens next

At the end of the response period, we will:

  • review all comments received
  • make responses publicly available on the consultation hub (unless you request your submission remain confidential)
  • publish a Summary of Consultation which summarises the feedback received and outlines any intended changes and next steps.

Feedback that improves the guidance will be incorporated into the final guidance.

Give Us Your Views.


  • Aerodrome operator
  • Air operators
  • Manufacturers
  • Pilots
  • Certified aerodrome owner/operator
  • Unregulated aerodrome owner/operator
  • Aerodrome owner/operators
  • Aerodrome industry consultant
  • Helicopter pilots
  • Flight training operators - helicopters
  • AOC holders operating helicopters
  • Part 138 of CASR certificate holders operating helicopters
  • Vertiport developers


  • Airspace and infrastructure
  • Emergencies and incident reporting
  • Safety management systems
  • Safety promotion
  • Vertiports