CAA finally agrees to adopt ICAO international standard on minimum flying height over population centres

After years of requiring a minimum flying height over conurbations that exceeded the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) requirement, the UK Civil Aviation Authority has adopted the 1,000ft (300m) international standard.

The CAA points out, however, that the requirement to be able to glide to alight without harming persons or property remains in place.

Pressure from ICAO audit, as well as from industry, provided the motivation for the CAA to adopt the height reduction from the previous requirement, which was for aircraft flying over conurbations to be at least 1,500ft "above the highest fixed object within a horizontal radius of 600m of the aircraft".

When not over built-up areas the existing rule states that aircraft shall not approach closer to a person, vessel, vehicle or structure than 500ft. Exceptions are standard for aircraft engaged in take-off or approach to land and under other circumstances specified in the revised rule. The CAA observes: "The requirements to glide clear and to alight without danger to persons or property on the surface remain in place. Therefore, for the majority of flights in light aircraft and helicopters, there will be no significant change to the way these have to be planned and conducted in relation to congested areas."


Source: Flight International