EC aircrew regulations await approval

European Union (EU) ministers have been asked to approve new rules laying
down minimum rest periods and other safety-related personnel regulations for
civil aviation crews.

The European Commission has proposed a regulation that would set maximum flight
times for pilots and cabin crew to 13 hours per day, and 11 hours 45 minutes
for night flights.

In addition, the commission’s proposal would also lay down requirements for
cabin crews regarding age, medical fitness, training and certificates of professional

The commission said its move "meets the concerns raised by the European
Parliament, flight crew associations and airlines with regard to the lack of
harmonised detailed rules for flight and duty times and rest periods for crews,
particularly as regards air safety and aircraft accidents associated with
fatigue. At the moment, national requirements still apply."

The EU has been steadily harmonising European civil aviation regulations
during the past 15 years.

The commission added that the whole package would "make it possible to
guarantee a uniform level of safety".

EU transport commissioner Loyola de Palacio, said: "This new regulation
will facilitate the necessary consensus between all the institutions to
establish strict safety rules for all European commercial aircraft

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