Pilots, passengers and aircraft arriving at five UK airfields earlier this month were subjected to on-the-spot checks by the CAA and Border Force.
In total, 12 aircraft, 18 pilots and 12 passengers were inspected, during the enforcement operation. The five airports were Blackbushe, London Oxford, Firs Farm airstrip in Berkshire, White Waltham and Wycombe Air Park. [Photo above shows Blackbushe Airport. Photo: Lewis Hulbert]
The CAA’s Investigations and Enforcement Team checked aircraft were being operated legally and had either a valid certificate of airworthiness or permit to fly. The aircraft’s insurance details were also checked. Pilots’ licences were inspected to ensure they were current, and that the licence holder had the necessary ratings.
Passengers were asked about their arrangements for booking and paying for flights, to ensure the flights were legal.
Border Force officers checked the immigration status of pilots and passengers, as well as ensuring there were no breaches of customs regulations.
Alison Slater, Head of the CAA‚’s Investigation and Enforcement Team, said, “Pilots flying into the UK need to ensure they comply with aviation rules and regulations. Our recent work with Border Force colleagues had the simple aim of ensuring private flights arriving from overseas were being conducted safely. The general aviation community at large has every right to expect us to carry out this kind of activity.”
Although no major breaches of aviation regulations were uncovered during this operation, the CAA will continue to undertake routine activity with the UK Border Force and other agencies.
This follows a recent joint UK-France operation to arrest a pilot for people smuggling in a light aircraft. More here.