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Anjum Shabbir
27th November 2019
Institutional law Internal Market

Aircraft in the UK have to continue to keep a distance from clouds

The UK notified the Commission and EU Aviation Safety Agency of a visual-flight-rules exemption it wanted to apply to certain aircraft operators flying at 3,000 feet or below in UK airspace. That exemption means not following certain requirements in the Regulation on rules for air and operational provisions regarding services and procedures in air navigation: including keeping an appropriate visibility and distance from cloud (5km). The idea for the UK behind doing so was, inter alia, to facilitate safe transition to future airspace requirements it has in a high level action plan and to implement air traffic service procedural changes.

However, the Commission has made a decision, under the Civil Aviation Regulation, that the conditions required under that Regulation have not been met: the UK exemption is not a safe measure, is not limited in time because such a request has been made continuously since 2014, and because alternative ways are possible for the UK to achieve its goals.

See today’s Official Journal for the published decision: Commission Implementing Decision 2019/1957.


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