Aviation regulators launch joint fire safety initiative

Date: 02 August 2013

The potential risks fire poses to passenger aircraft has been placed centre stage in an awareness raising campaign by the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). The safety drive includes a short video that has just been released, identifying the specific maintenance risks that may cause onboard fires, such as dust accumulation and faulty electrical wiring. The film will be distributed to US and UK airlines and maintenance organisations to incorporate into their training regimes.

The video highlights the importance of accurately following aircraft maintenance procedures and also ensuring that electrical wiring is not damaged or contaminated with grease or foreign debris in any way.

The CAA and FAA already collaborate extensively on fire and cabin safety issues, with both regulators also engaging with Transport Canada and the European Aviation Safety Agency on fire-related workstreams. The UK regulator has also worked extensively with the aviation industry to explore mitigation measures for fire-risks.

Indeed, the CAA has previously identified fire as one of the ‘significant seven’ safety risks to commercial aviation, along with such threats as ‘loss of control’ and ‘runway excursions’. Of particular concern is the threat of fires breaking out in hidden areas of the aircraft, which cabin crew are unable to access and bring under control in-flight. The importance of reducing fire risks was highlighted with the recent significant fire on the Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 787 on the ground at London Heathrow. As the film points out, an in-flight fire that is out of control will on average lead to flight crew losing control of the aircraft within 15 minutes.

The five minute video is available to view at www.caa.co.uk/significantseven and the CAA’s YouTube channel www.youtube.com/UKCAA.

DVD versions are also available by emailing press.office@caa.co.uk

For further media information contact the CAA Press on: 0207 453 6030 press.office@caa.co.uk.

Follow the CAA on Twitter @UK_CAA


Notes to Editors:

More information on the joint fire-related workstreams can be found at www.fire.tc.faa.gov.


The CAA is the UK's specialist aviation regulator. Its activities include: making sure that the aviation industry meets the highest technical and operational safety standards; preventing holidaymakers from being stranded abroad or losing money because of tour operator insolvency; planning and regulating all UK airspace; and regulating airports, air traffic services and airlines and providing advice on aviation policy from an economic standpoint.