Hoping for a miracle seems to be the strategy of the the European Commission!

Europe’s Staff organisations have published an open letter to the aviation stakeholders within the Single European Sky concerning the proposed targets for ANSPs in the the period from 2020-24 – the so-called reporting period 3 (RP3)

In essence, the European Commission, the Airlines and the Performance Review Body (PRB) don’t seem to acknowledge that there is an obvious connection between the immense focus on cost reduction in RP1 and RP2 and the current delay situation in Europe.

It is clear that the Commission uses the same thinking for RP3 as used for RP1 and RP2. The staff organisations predict that the results will be the same: similar or more delay, underinvestment in the areas where there is an urgent need, a continued disharmony between the needs of the airlines and the performance of the ANSPs, continued distrust between the main stakeholders while there is no visible benefit for the passenger.

Read the full letter here.

European Excellence Award

During the 2019 World ATM Congress​ in Madrid, the International Federation of Air Traffic Safety Electronics Associations (IFATSEA), the European Cockpit Association (ECA) and the International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers’ Associations (IFATCA) have jointly been awarded the Single European Sky Excellence Award.

The European Commission attributed the award to the “complete commitment from staff to delivering the essential services needed to enable capacity and deliver safety.”

Needless to say that as representatives of air traffic controllers worldwide, IFATCA is honoured to share this award with our engineering and pilot colleagues. We also want to explicitly recognise all of our members for their continued commitment and skill with which they uphold the highest safety standards in often challenging circumstances.

IFATCA wants to thank the European Commission for recognising the vital role the front-line operators play in keeping aviation the safest mode of transport.

Marc Baumgartner (left, IFATCA SES Coordinator), Costas Christoforou (middle, IFATSEA Regional Director Europe) and Loïc Michel (right, ECA Technical Policy Advisor) accepting the award on behalf of European staff.

Annual Report from the Expert Group on the Human Dimension

The Expert Group on the Human Dimension (EGHD) of the Single European Sky (SES) was formally established by the European Commission in 2017 to advise on the implementation and development of SES from a human dimension perspective. It represents the opinion of all frontline operators and support staff who are impacted by the latest regulatory, operational and technological changes resulting from SES. The group is co-chaired by Paul Neering, an experienced IFATCA Representative. Within the group, IFATCA is represented by Anders Liebl (DK). They have just published their 2018 Annual Report, which gives an excellent overview of the importance of this group.

Letter to Argentinian Government

IFATCA has addressed the government of Argentina, through its President – His Excellency Mauricio Macri. We are extremely concerned about the disrespect for international safety culture standards at the Aeroparque Jorge Newberry airport. Following a single complaint from one pilot regarding an event where safety was not compromised in any way, the controllers working at the time were removed from their position, seemingly as a disciplinary measure. The information we have suggested they were replaced by staff who may not have been licensed or rated for the positions they occupied, clearly creating a serious breach of the applicable safety levels.

The full letter, in Spanish and in English can be found here.

Aviation English Instructor course, Algiers

Over the past week and with the support of local association SNPCA, IFATCA hosted an Aviation English Development course in Algiers, Algeria. Some 28 participants from Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Niger and Nigeria attended. Presented by Silvia Caragui (from our Romanian Member Association RATCA), it culminated in a small ceremony this morning, during which the certificates were handed out to the attendees. The course is a so-called train-the-trainers course, where the idea is that the participants take the experience back to their local units/countries to help their colleagues improve their aviation english skills.

Aviation English Proficiency Course, Santa Cruz, Bolivia

Controllers from Bolivia, Chile, Argentina and Ecuador recently completed an IFATCA sponsored five-day Aviation English Proficiency Course in Santa Cruz, Bolivia November 13-17. MAs and controllers from the entire region were invited to participate and the class filled up with over 25 participants, including a pilot.

The course was taught by Ronald Vega, MA from 2019 Conference host Costa Rica.  Ron actually assisted the FAA in the United States with the creation of some of the material used in the course.  Each student was given an E-textbook and accompanying CD so they could share their knowledge with ATCOs in their home facilities.

The Americas Region looks forward to hosting the next "Think Safety" seminar planned for February 6-8, 2018 in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

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The IFATCA European Regional Meeting in Austria, 26-28th September 2017

120 participants from 34 member associations made their way to Hotel Sonnreich in Loipersdorf, Austria to participate in the 34th ERM.
The issues discussed ranged from Fatigue Management, Single European Sky, Sovereignty of airspace, Privatisation in ANS, IFATCA working papers, FISOs to new EASA regulations. Maria Serano Mulet from USCA led the meeting with lively discussions and involvement from the audience.
The meeting showed that the problems in our industry are far from being solved and that Air Navigation Service in Europe is in transformation, which requires that we work together to find new ways to influence the decision makers to secure a high standard of service. Besides the professional issues, we also had time to enjoy the social program that our hosts from the Austrian ATCA had organised.
A warm thank you to all the people from AATCA that made this a memorable and well organised ERM.

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Think Safety Workshop – Accra, Ghana

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On the 3-5th of April around 40 people participated to the 2nd ICAO/IFATCA think safety seminar. Participants came from Kenya, The Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Ghana and ranged from CAA representatives, ANS managers to ATCOs. The course revolved around Safety management systems, incident investigations, Critical Incident Stress Management and Just Culture. The three-day course was based on ICAO Annex 19 and systemic safety ideas. The workshop was superbly organised by our Ghanaian member association, GHATCA, who is also the host of next years IFATCA conference.

TOC & PLC January Meeting – Tokyo, Japan

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Twice a year TOC comes together for a 3-day meeting to discuss the progress and the desired outcome of the papers. Although a great share of the discussion is done via email throughout the year, meeting in person provides the opportunity to have more in depth discussions. By having the meeting in different places, the committee is able to involve corresponding members or by some paper subjects concerned MAs in the discussion. 

In January 2017, the meeting took place in Tokyo, Japan. Since there were several combined papers on the working program, the final day of the meeting has been a combined TOC/PLC meeting. This day was also the start of the 3 days of meeting PLC had scheduled. 

 

Several subjects were discussed during the meeting.

The paper on Ambient Workplace Recording (AWR, combined PLC/TOC) created much discussion. The controversial subject is current is many countries. In a world where aviation and incident reporting is not only getting more and more important, but also more transparent, the urge to implement systems such as AWR is getting bigger.

The lengthy discussions on the subject showed that this implementation is a delicate issue. To stand against AWR seems to be the easiest way forward, especially regarding the many discussions on privacy issues, which are not solely aviation related. However, as said before, there is a big push toward implementation so the question is if our objection would actually prevent it. Also, AWR could be beneficial to safety investigation is some cases, not just for the overall result but also for an ATCO’s case in particular.  There is no hesitation that the AWR data collected should be handled with extreme care.

The committees decided that no AWR records shall be made public. Since the data will be used for incident investigation, it was agreed that a censured transcript of the data is needed. Sufficient and clear agreements on when to use the AWR data and who is allowed to access the data should be made between controllers and management. 

These kinds of comprehensive subjects usually create a lot of discussion. By having these discussions, the committees try to cover all point of views so that they can epitomize this in widely supported policy statements to be presented during conference

IFATCA Technical Award

Recipients of the IFATCA Technical Award

2017 – NAVCanada NAVCANsuite

2016 – Frequentis

2015 – Imtradex

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