Report by independent consultants, Helios, highly critical of CAA over its airspace change process
Helios, a management and technology consultancy, was contracted by the CAA to undertake an independent review of its airspace change (AC) decision-making process. Its report presents the results of the review together with Helios’ recommendations for a revised AC process. There have been a huge number of complaints in the last few years about how the CAA deals with airspace change, and the inadequate way in which it communicates with the public. Helios is highly critical of the way the CAA has conducted consultations about flight paths at airports across the UK, saying there has been a lack of transparency. Helios also says there is a problem in the CAA being both judge and jury. The report comes just ten days after the CAA announced that it would allow London City Airport to concentrate its flight paths. That decision was severely criticized by campaign group HACAN East, which complained about the lack of proper consultation – most people did not know they would be getting concentrated plane noise in future. The CAA refused to re-consult. The Helios report has called for an Oversight Committee to be set up to allow people to challenge the CAA’s decisions on flights paths.
Independent report slams CAA over flight path changes
(Hacan East – covering London City Airport)
An independent report, published yesterday, has slammed the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) over the way it has conducted the consultation about flight paths at airports across the UK (1). The report, by aviation consultants Helios, branded the consultation as lacking transparency and criticised the CAA for being judge and jury.
The report comes just ten days after the CAA announced that it would allow London City Airport to concentrate its flight paths. That decision was severely criticized by campaign group HACAN East. The group, which represents residents under the flight paths, said that there had been “uproar at the lack of consultation on the proposals last year”. The CAA refused a request from local residents and politicians from across the political spectrum to order a fresh consultation.
HACAN East chair John Stewart said, “It is not surprising that the CAA was so keen to release its decision on the City Airport flight paths before this damning report came out from Helios. The report broadly endorses the criticisms we and others have made about the way the CAA allowed the airport to get away with an appalling consultation where people who face the prospect of all the planes going over the heads were not even told about it.”
The Helios report has called for an Oversight Committee to be set up to allow people to challenge the CAA’s decisions on flights paths. It says that at present ”unlike other planning processes, there is no appeal mechanism available aside from a Judicial Review; which is expensive and therefore not available to all stakeholders.”
Survey Data: www.caa.co.uk/CAP1357
(1). Full Helios report:
The Helios Report
“Independent Review of the Civil Aviation Authority’s Airspace Change Process”
The Executive Summary says:
…….. and there is a lot more ….. at Helios Report
The whole list of recommendations are on pages 54 – 57.