Fatigue review final report: implementation considerations

Closed 22 Apr 2018

Opened 21 Mar 2018

Feedback Updated 21 Sep 2018

We Asked

In March 2018, we asked the aviation community to comment on the 24 recommendations made by a team of leading international specialists after they conducted an independent review of fatigue rules for operators and pilots. The final report of the independent review and a copy of the consultation survey is available at the bottom of the consultation webpage. The consultation asked you to raise any implementation issues and provide feedback to CASA on the highest priorities for action to help us develop our response to the review.

You Said

We received 26 responses from a wide range of stakeholders including unions and industry representative organisations covering aerial mustering, aerial application, rotary, charter, small and large air operators, as well as feedback from a number of individuals.

Feedback was generally supportive of the review recommendations including the need to modernise Australia’s fatigue rules.

We received mixed feedback on the need to develop a process to approve variations to prescriptive limits and multiple tiers of fatigue risk management systems.

Feedback was also mixed on the merits of aligning closer to international averages. Some argued that the use of simple averages ignored additional mitigations within other rule sets. In contrast, some argued that the Australian aviation environment was less demanding than other jurisdictions regarding terrain, weather and traffic.

Several additional suggestions were provided to improve the fatigue rules including gathering regular fatigue data, modifying off duty requirements when transitioning between prescriptive rule sets, mitigating the effects of consecutive early starts and standby arrangements.

Further consultation

The Aviation Safety Advisory Panel appointed a Technical Working Group including representatives of operators, pilot associations, industry associations and academia to assist us with finalising our response to the review recommendations. The working group met in July 2018 and considered industry feedback and CASA’s proposed response to the review recommendations. The Technical Working Group report is available on the CASA website.

In August 2018 the Aviation Safety Advisory Panel considered the Technical Working Group report. Based on their advice, the Aviation Safety Advisory Panel is generally supportive for CASA to progress with drafting the revised CAO 48.1. The Aviation Safety Advisory Panel recommend an additional Technical Working Group meeting to review the drafted regulations and seek to achieve further consensus on outstanding policy matters prior to further public consultation.

We Did

Overall, CASA will adopt 21 of the 24 review recommendations.

This includes the review’s recommendation for a staged approach to transition to the new fatigue rules. The new transition timeline provides time for us to amend CAO 48.1, develop improved guidance material, prepare our staff, and for industry to work with us to implement the changes.

High capacity regular public transport operators will transition to the new fatigue rules by 30 September 2019. To support these operators, we will revise flight duty periods to align more with international averages and improve the operation of fatigue risk management systems (FRMS). We will also establish an FRMS manager to oversight the review, approval and monitoring of industry FRMS and appoint an internal FRMS panel with additional training in FRMS management.

All other air operators will need to adopt the new fatigue requirements by 26 March 2020. To support the transition of these operators we will provide improved guidance for prescriptive limits and FRMS. This will include a sample FRMS manual and examples of acceptable means of compliance.

Aerial application operations will be aligned with the fatigue limits in Sub-Part 137.Q of Civil Aviation Safety Regulations and rules regarding standby and off duty periods will be reviewed to reduce complexity.

For those operators already transitioned, or in the process of transition, we will continue to review and approve applications under the existing CAO 48.1 Instrument 2013 and 2016 and will develop transitional arrangements to continue recognition of these approvals.

Ongoing actions including monitoring fatigue data and international regulations to inform future changes, monitoring transition to the new rules to review the need for an approved variation process and multiple tiers of FRMS, and assessing whether aerial application flight duty periods should be subject to regulation.

Industry engagement and consultation including ‘road-testing’ regulation amendments, and seeking industry input on guidance material, forms, education and communication material will be integral to our approach.

Additional detail regarding CASA’s response to the independent review, including further discussion of consultation feedback and the agreed action for each recommendation is available on the CASA website.

We will maintain the status of the recommendations and actions on the fatigue pages of our website, and will seek feedback from the Aviation Safety Advisory Panel prior to closing recommendations.

Subscribe to CASA Briefing and our ‘regulatory implementation’ mailing list to stay up-to-date on progress.

Results Updated 22 May 2018

Thank you for your feedback to this consultation.

CASA received 26 responses from a wide range of stakeholders including unions and industry representative organisations, aerial mustering, aerial application, rotary, charter, small and large air operators, as well as feedback from a number individuals.

Individual and organisational responses are published here, where permission to publish has been received.

Now that the consultation has closed, all responses will be analysed and considered.

The Aviation Safety Advisory Panel (ASAP) is the primary advisory body through which CASA directs its engagement with industry. CASA anticipates the ASAP will establish a technical working group to help review industry input on implementing the review recommendations.

Feedback received via the CASA Consultation Hub will be provided to the technical working group for consideration prior to CASA releasing a detailed response to the independent review, including an implementation timetable.

CASA expects to have key changes in place during 2018.

Published Responses

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

Overview

A team of leading international specialists has confirmed the need to modernise Australia’s fatigue rules for air operators and pilots.

The CASA Board has released the final report of the independent review of aviation fatigue rules for operators and pilots. It includes 24 recommendations to improve the fatigue rules contained in CAO 48.1 Instrument 2013 and their implementation.

The independent review considered the safety need for updating the rules, processes underpinning their development and communication to industry, their scientific basis and validity, international alignment, and the impact on the Australian aviation industry.

Key recommendations to improve the fatigue rules include:

  • Revising flight duty period (FDP) limitations by adopting limits more closely aligned with international averages.
  • Increasing the flexibility of the Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS) option to enhance scalability through additional risk-based tiers.
  • Introducing a standardised approval process (other than an FRMS) to offer limited flexibility for operators to operate beyond the prescriptive limits with specific fatigue risk mitigation measures in place.
  • Removing Part 137 aerial application operations from CAO 48.1 or adopting limits from CASR Sub part 137.Q.
  • A freeze on transition dates until changes flowing from the review are finalised in CAO 48.1 and material to support industry is ready.
  • Allocating appropriate resources to plan a detailed, coordinated implementation for finalising the reform of CAO 48.1.
  • A staggered approach to the next phase of change—addressing the highest risk areas first.

Why We Are Consulting

This consultation invited the aviation community to comment on the recommendations in the review's final report. It was an opportunity for industry stakeholders to raise any implementation issues and provide feedback to CASA on the highest priorities for action.

Download the Fatigue Review Final Report 

 

Audiences

  • CASA Staff
  • Aerodrome operators
  • Air operators
  • Instructors and flight examiners
  • Flight training organisations
  • Pilots
  • Sports aviation operators
  • Hot air balloon operators
  • Air traffic controller
  • Drone operator
  • Foreign operator
  • Traveling public / passengers

Interests

  • Fatigue management