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UK Civil Aviation Regulations

These are published by the CAA on our UK Regulations pages. EU Regulations and EASA Access Guides published by EASA no longer apply in the UK. Our website and publications are being reviewed to update all references. Any references to EU law and EASA Access guides should be disregarded and where applicable the equivalent UK versions referred to instead.

What is a Radio Operator's Certificate of Competence (ROCC)?

The purpose of the ROCC Air-ground communication service (AGCS) and Offshore Communication Service (OCS) is to improve the situational awareness for Pilots and to assist them by providing information that is useful for the safe and efficient conduct of flights.

Who needs a Radio Operator's Certificate of Competence?

Radio operators providing:

  • An air-ground communication service (AGCS)
  • A service to aircraft or parachutists within parachute drop zones
  • Clearances as part of the Clearance Delivery Officer (CDO) task

Who else needs to hold a ROCC?

  • An offshore radio operator
  • Helideck Landing Officer (HLO)
  • Helideck assistants
  • Emergency Response and Rescue Vessel (ERRV) crew
  • Anyone providing an Offshore Communication Service within UK Offshore waters


You can apply for a Radio Operator’s Certificate of Competence if you:

  • Are 18 years of age
  • Have completed the appropriate written and practical examinations

If you hold the following aeronautical qualifications you may apply directly for a Radio Operator’s Certificate of Competence (ROCC) for the provision of an AGCS without having to take the written and practical radiotelephony examinations:

  • UK CAA Air Traffic Controller’s licence with a current Unit Endorsement
  • UK CAA Flight Information Service Officer’s licence with a current validation at an aerodrome or area control centre
  • ATC Certificate of Competence issued to a member of HM Forces with a current unit validation

No medical certificate is required in order for the holder of an ROCC to operate an aeronautical radio station.

ROCC holder responsibilities

An ROCC holder is not entitled to provide instructions to a pilot however they do have a ‘duty of care’ to provide safety critical information as soon as available, this includes flight safety messages and timely safety information regarding adverse weather to an aircraft in flight or about to depart. The information provided by an AGCS/OCS radio station operator may be used to assist a pilot in making a decision; however, the safe conduct of the flight remains the pilot's responsibility.

Radio Operator's Certificate of Competence categories

Radio Operator's Certificate of Competence (ROCC) certificates are divided into the following categories:

Air ground communications service (AGCS)

AGCS radio station operators provide traffic and weather information to pilots operating on and in the vicinity of the aerodrome. Information provided by an AGCS radio station operator may be used to assist a pilot in making a decision.

Offshore Communication Service (OCS)

OCS radio station operators provide messages to helicopters operating in the vicinity of offshore oil rigs, platforms and vessels through the use of aeronautical radio stations and Non-Directional Radio Beacons (NDBs) located on these installations.

Parachutists Aeronautical Radio Station (PARA)

Parachute communication service only radio station operators provide direction to specific aircraft to control the parachute drop, ensure parachutists are released safely and are able to provide instructions to parachutists to ensure a safe landing / clearance of the drop zone. (Restricted - valid only on frequencies 129.905 MHz & 130.530 MHz).

Only to be used at notified parachute display locations when approved by the CAA as part of the display approval

ROCC certificate pages 3 & 4 must only be signed by the Ofcom licensee for use on frequencies 129.905 MHz & 130.530 MHz.

Clearance Delivery Officer (CDO) 

The purpose of the CDO is only to relay specific clearances. This is a dedicated function (used only when approved by ATS Inspector) undertaken at a separate position from that of the provision of air traffic service by Area Control Centre or Aerodrome Controller.

Only those specifically accepted by the CAA as part of an accepted unit training plan, may apply for the issue of the Clearance Delivery Officer (CDO) Radio Operator's Certificate of Competence (ROCC).

Restricted ROCC - Flying Display Directors (FDD)

The Restricted ROCC - FDD is a restricted certificate for use only by Flying Display Directors (FDD) at approved locations for flight displays. The phraseology is restricted to only that listed in Chapter 6 of CAP 403, and to allow the FDD to intervene in Flying Displays to pass safety critical messages to display aircraft in a timely manner. Operators of a restricted ROCC - FDD are reminded of the guidance contained within CAP 403 and must adhere to all elements contained within.

It must not be used to act as an Air Ground operator (AGCS), Offshore Communication Service (OCS), Clearance Delivery Officer (CDO), Parachutists Aeronautical Radio Station (PARA) or Operational Control Communications (OPC).

Only those who have completed and passed an FDD accreditation course may act as a Restricted ROCC FDD operator. The ROCC Air Ground Communication Service (AGCS), Offshore Communication Service (OCS), Clearance Delivery Officer (CDO), Parachutists Aeronautical Radio Station (PARA) and Operational Control Communications (OPC) do not allow the Restricted ROCC FDD privileges to be exercised. All holders would be required to complete the full training (no credits given) and restricted FDD ROCC certificate issue requirements.

There are no exemptions or credits available towards the issue of a restricted ROCC - FDD. No exemption or credits to the requirements will be given to:

  • those who already hold another category of ROCC
  • an Air Traffic Control Officer (ATCO)
  • Flight Information Service Officer (FISO) or
  • those who already hold a Pilot’s licence.

Only those who have completed and passed the FDD accreditation course and been approved by the General Aviation Unit (GAU) will be issued a restricted ROCC - FDD.

Approved UK CAA ROCC Examiners are not authorised to assess or approve FDD applications.

All applicants for the restricted ROCC - FDD must contact the General Aviation Unit (GAU) to arrange attendance of an FDD accreditation course.

For further details please see Supplementary Amendment (SA) Number 2023/01 (Version 1) to CAP 452 - Aeronautical Radio Station Operator’s Guide.

Operational Control Communications (OPC)

An aeronautical radio station which is licensed and established for company operational control communications may be used only for communication with company aircraft or aircraft for which the company is the operating agency. A Radio Operator's Certificate of Competence issued by the UK CAA is not required in order to use an aeronautical radio station when providing an OPC.

Each of the ROCC syllabus differ in their content and they are not interchangeable.


Guidance on exams and finding an authorised examiner

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) appoints and authorises examiners to conduct written and practical radio-telephony examinations for the Radio Operator's Certificate of Competence (ROCC).

Examiners can assess candidates who require a ROCC to provide Air Ground Communication Service (AGCS) or Offshore Communications Service (OCS) depending on their authorisation. They can do this either independently or in conjunction with organisations providing training courses.

The CAA does not approve any training courses for the ROCC.

Applying for the grant of a ROCC to provide an AGCS

Applying for the grant of a ROCC to provide an OCS

Please note - The CAA is introducing electronic examinations (e-Exams) to replace the paper-based system. This transition has commenced with Flight Crew Professional examinations for Aeroplane & Helicopter ATPL, CPL and IR.

Close Guidance on exams and finding an authorised examiner

What else do I need to know?

Close What else do I need to know?

What do I need to include with my application?

  • Application form SRG 1413 with the relevant sections completed by the applicant and examiner.
  • The Relevant fee
  • The written test papers
  • Certified copy of your Identification ( A CAA Authorised ROCC Examiner can act as a certifier)
  • Copies of qualifying exemption paperwork (if applicable)
Close What do I need to include with my application?

How do I apply?

If you are applying for the grant of an ROCC for the provision of an Air Ground Communications Service (AGCS), Offshore Communications Service (OCS), or Parachute please complete the appropriate sections of Form SRG 1413 Application for Radio Operator's Certificate of Competence.

NB: Section 5 of the SRG 1413 will need to be completed by the examiner who has conducted the written and practical examinations.

Once you have completed the SRG 1413 application form, this will need to be submitted via post (address below) with the appropriate supporting documents.

Close How do I apply?

What happens next?

  • The assessment of your application is completed by a Licensing Assistant or Officer
  • Following an acceptable assessment the certificate is then processed, signed and dispatched to the correspondence address.
  • We will contact you or the examiner if we have any queries regarding your application and may keep your application pending awaiting any additional documentation to be submitted.
  • A refund fee may be charged if the assessment results in the rejection of your application. This will also be applied if you choose to cancel your application.
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