The UK Civil Aviation Authority has successfully prosecuted Romanian airline Blue Air Aviation for six offences under the Covid Enforcement Regulations. Following a sentencing hearing at Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court today (22 February 2022), Blue Air Aviation has been fined £40,000, after pleading guilty to the offences.
Five of the offences concern Blue Air Aviation failing to ensure that passengers arriving at Heathrow had completed the required Passenger Locator Form. The sixth offence concerns the operator failing to ensure an arriving passenger had the required evidence showing that they had completed a pre-departure Covid test.
The prosecution and fine follows Blue Air Aviation receiving fixed penalty notices (FPNs) for the breaches of Covid-19 requirements, which they did not pay or seek to resolve with the Civil Aviation Authority.
This is the first prosecution of an airline under the Covid Enforcement Regulations, which gave new enforcement powers to the Civil Aviation Authority to ensure airlines check passengers arriving in England are complying with the Covid rules for international travel.
Commenting on the ruling by the Court, Paul Smith, Consumer Director at the UK Civil Aviation Authority, said:
“We welcome the Court’s decision to fine Blue Air Aviation over breaches of the Covid Enforcement Regulations. While we generally observe high levels of compliance from airlines against the regulations, it is important for consumer confidence and public health that failures to follow the requirements are dealt with appropriately.
“It is important that airlines including Blue Air continue to engage with us going forward. The UK Civil Aviation Authority will always look to prosecute breaches of compliance where necessary.”