What is the issue?

Aerodromes are high-risk environments. Almost 70% of all fatal air accidents happen at or around airports and incidents, such as runway incursions. This complex issue involves a lot of different aspects: airport design, lighting, markings, signage, wildlife control, etc. All these have to be carefully considered in order to make the airport area as safe as possible.

Why is the issue important to ECA?

Given the number of accidents happening at airports, there is a need to improve airport safety. For this, it is essential that pilots, as one of the end-users of the airports, are included in the airport safety teams to provide their operational perspective. Moreover, as the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has recently started its work towards developing common European rules, harmonisation is a key element to improve aviation safety.

How is ECA involved?

ECA and pilots have been active in aerodromes for many years and at different levels. First of all, at the national level, ECA encourages pilots to become members of the Local Runway Safety Teams set up at the airport level and in charge of looking at all safety aspects of the airport in order to improve them. ECA also supports the International Federation of Air Line Pilots’ Association (IFALPA), who has developed useful trainings for pilot representatives in these teams. Secondly, at the European level, ECA’s involvement is twofold. We have been active for many years at EUROCONTROL working groups on Runway Incursions and Excursions. We have contributed to the drafting of the European Action Plan for the Prevention of Runway Incursions (EAPPRI) and advised on the study on Runway Excursions. ECA representatives have also been involved in the drafting of the European Action Plan for the Prevention of Runway Excursions, due to be published by end 2012. At EASA, since the Agency started its work in aerodromes in spring 2010, ECA pilot experts have been involved in the drafting of the future EASA rules in aerodrome safety (due to be published by end 2012).

Who is responsible?

  • Executive Board Director: Álvaro Gammicchia
  • Staff member: Loïc Michel
  • Working Group: Air Traffic Management & Aerodromes (ATMA WG)
  • Chairmen: Paul Vissers / Wolfgang Starke

Public documents

External Links