DGCA orders airlines to ensure manpower, gear for safe flying

Forum Gandhi | Updated on: Jul 20, 2022
Sources say the Centre is prepared to take strict actions on those failing to comply with the norms

Sources say the Centre is prepared to take strict actions on those failing to comply with the norms | Photo Credit: cueapi

Says cut operations if resources not enough; move follows rising reports of technical snags

In light of increasing technical snags by domestic carriers, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has directed airlines to conduct a thorough review of manpower, tools equipment and spares, and proportionally curtail operations if there is any shortage in resources.

In an advisory issued on July 19, the aviation watchdog said, “A thorough review of your airline operations is undertaken to ensure that the required resources are made available for ensuring safe, efficient and reliable air transport service. Alternatively, in case of inability to ensure the required resources, proportionate curtailing of operations may also be considered. Action taken in this regard may be intimated to this office.” A copy of the letter was reviewed by BusinessLine.

The onus lies on

In the past few months, there has been a multi-fold increase in engineering-related occurrences and malfunctioning in airlines. “Recent spot checks have indicated that the required manpower, spares, tools/ equipment are insufficient in certain areas commensurate to the operations being undertaken,” the DGCA said. It added that aircraft at base and transit stations shall be released by certifying staff holding a license with appropriate authorisation by their organisation. It demanded compliance by July 28.

In its most recent letter, the DGCA also advised that an accountable manager be appointed by all airlines. Also, “It is imperative that systemic efforts are taken for ensuring safety of aircraft operations,” wherein the accountable manager is ultimately responsible for ensuring that sufficient manpower, tools/ equipment, spares are made available at all times.

Strict compliance

Sources told BusinessLine that the Ministry of Civil Aviation is prepared to take strict actions on airlines who fail to comply with these norms. “The Ministry sees scope for improvement on the safety norms, and it is firm that these norms need to be complied as soon as possible,” they said.

Most recently, Go First’s Mumbai-Leh and Srinagar-Delhi flights faced engineering issues, and both were grounded. On Wednesday, too, a GoFirst Delhi-Guwahati flight witnessed windshield crack. GoFirst isn’t the only airline that is facing snags. Other low-cost-carriers — SpiceJet and IndiGo — have also had multiple incidents in the past few months.

Published on July 20, 2022
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