Legal Obligation to Change

EU-OPS Regulation 1899/2006 obliges the EU Institutions to change the current FTL legislation if EASA’s scientific evaluation shows that this legislation is insufficient to adequately protect against pilot fatigue posing a safety risk.

Art. 8a mandates EASA to “assist the Commission in the preparation of proposals for the modification of […] Subpart Q”. As specified in a recital, the Commission is to “draw up and submit proposals without delay to amend the relevant technical provisions” of Subpart Q” and to do so “on the basis of the results of this evaluation”.

In addition, in March 2009, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) adopted unanimously changes to the ICAO Annex 6, which require that FTL rules are “based upon scientific principles and knowledge, where available”. This new Annex 6 became applicable on 19 November 2009, binding all ICAO Member States – including the EU Member States. (see Press Release, see compilation of legal references). In a further revision of Annex 6, in 2011, ICAO decided to delete the above words “where available” as scientific knowledge is deemed to be widely available nowadays.