The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has released further details to the aviation industry of its recent structural reorganisation. The CAA had announced earlier in the year that it would be merging its airspace and safety functions
to strengthen its oversight role. Now, all major stakeholders, including airlines and airports, are being contacted with further details of the newly created Safety and Airspace Regulation Group (SARG).
Setting out the objectives of SARG, Mark Swan, group director, confirmed that ‘performance-based oversight’ will lead its activities, allowing the CAA to regulate in a more intelligent way. Using information generated by safety management systems and other sources of information, performance-based oversight will identify, and then tackle, the areas of greatest risk.
Mark Swan, said: “UK aviation has one of the best safety records in the world, but the pressure on this record is increasing. To help make a difference, we need to concentrate our resources and efforts where they are going to have the greatest effect. We also need to get better at identifying emerging risks, and to put the right amount of effort into each risk, or reduce effort where the risk is less. That means moving to a more performance-based approach and the new set up of SARG will be crucial in achieving that.”
The CAA also pointed out that improvements to its processes and services have already begun to take effect, and will play an increasingly important role in how the newly restructured organisation operates. Centred around a services ‘Hub’ within the CAA’s Gatwick headquarters, a new co-ordinated customer service unit serves as a focal point for many enquiries and applications from individuals and organisations.
The CAA said it will begin contacting organisation it regulates over the coming weeks to explain in more detail what the changes will mean on an operational level.
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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.