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Air Line Pilots’ Association Reaches Out to Help CAA

26 June 2019


Air Line Pilots’ Association Reaches Out to Help Embattled CAA

The New Zealand Air Line Pilots’ Association (NZALPA) is offering its support and resources to the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and Transport Minister Phil Twyford as the regulatory body comes under increasing criticism.

There have been calls this week for an independent investigation into claims by a CAA staff whistle-blower that the agency is failing as a regulator and putting aviators and the travelling public at risk.

Accusations of bullying, harassment and an unhealthy work culture have also been levelled at the CAA.

“These accusations must be taken very seriously, especially in light of the high inspector turnover reported at CAA,” says NZALPA President Andrew Ridling. “We need those accusations thoroughly investigated. We want to make it clear that NZALPA aviation experts are offering our support and expertise to CAA to identify aviation safety issues and address them.

“Every time one of our members takes off in an aircraft we are relying on the CAA to have addressed all the possible safety issues that might affect us so that we get to go home to our families after that flight. The travelling public might not think too much about the role of the CAA, but at the end of the day they have the very same expectations regarding their safety,” Captain Ridling says.

“We have offered our support before and we are offering it again now. We have reached out to CAA Chief Executive Graeme Harris and Minister Twyford, inviting them to take us up on this offer.

“Our first questions to them will be to ask what the issues are and what is being done about them. Our next question will be how can we help?

“We need an effective CAA and we need to have a constructive working relationship with the regulator,” says Captain Ridling. “If an independent review of CAA is identified as the best way forward then NZALPA will support that.”

Captain Ridling says that many in the wider aviation industry have been aware of resourcing issues at the CAA for some time, particularly following major incidents. “In the past we’ve offered our collective knowledge and expertise. We are doing that again now.

“New Zealand is a small country but it has dedicated aviation experts who can come together quickly and help the CAA inspectorate – resulting in successful collaboration and, potentially, lives saved.”


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