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New federal duty hour rules announced, plus tougher impairment regs

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https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/minister-garneau-introduces-new-fatigue-regulations-to-make-air-travel-safer-for-all-canadians-702574631.html

I'll be looking for details, will post here

 


OTTAWA, Dec. 12, 2018 /CNW/ - Canadians, visitors and business travellers deserve and rely on fit and well-rested flight crews to move them across Canada and around the world. Transport Canadarecognizes that fatigue must be addressed in all modes of transportation and is committed to do all it can to protect the safety of Canadians. 

Today, the Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, announced changes to the Canadian Aviation Regulations to improve air travel safety for passengers and flight crews. The changes to the Canadian Aviation Regulations introduce:

 
  1. Prescribed flight and duty time limits that respect modern fatigue science and international standards to limit the amount of time a crew member can be on the job; and 
  2. Fatigue Risk Management Systems that will allow operators the flexibility to set flight hours based on their unique operations if they can demonstrate that alertness and safety will not be affected.

The new regulations apply to commercial transport services in Canada, which include:

  • major Canadian airline operators (subpart 705 of the Canadian Aviation Regulations) 
  • smaller and regional operators (subparts 703 and 704 of the Canadian Aviation Regulations).

Since 2015, Transport Canada undertook significant consultations and conducted over 100 meetings with airlines, small air operators, pilots, unions, associations and other industry stakeholders to raise awareness of the upcoming changes to the regulations. Minister Garneau personally met with small air operators, including those who provide essential air services to remote and northern communities to listen and respond to their concerns.

To help the industry deal with challenges they may have in implementing these new regulations, Canada's major airline operators will have two years to implement the new requirements. Smaller and regional operators will have four years to comply. Transport Canada will support and work in close collaboration with northern and small air operators during the implementation of these regulations. 

Transport Canada is also introducing amendments to the Fit for Duty regulations that will prohibit any flight crew member to work when not fit for duty. This includes consumption of alcohol or drugs, mental and physical conditions, and fatigue. The amendments will also prohibit a crew member from working within 12 hours of drinking alcohol, up from the previous limit of eight hours.

 

Edited by dagger

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Overview of the new regulations on flight crew fatigue management

From: Transport Canada

Backgrounder

All flight crew experience the detrimental effects of fatigue, whether they are flying cargo or passenger planes, short-haul or long-haul. To ensure the safety of passengers and crew, the Government of Canada sets limits to the amount of time a crew member can be on the job.

The changes to flight crew fatigue management include two essential elements:

  • New prescribed flight and duty limits that are grounded in modern science and better manage the length of time that a crew member can be on the job (see table below); and
  • Fatigue Risk Management Systems that will allow operators the flexibility to vary from the prescribed limits based on their unique operations if they can demonstrate that alertness and safety will not be affected.
New prescribed flight and duty time limits (subparts 705, 704, and 703 of the Canadian Aviation Regulations)
 
Flight time
Previous regulations (1996)
  • 1,200 hours in any 365 consecutive days
  • 300 hours in any 90 consecutive days
  • 120 hours in any 30 consecutive days
  • 40-60 hours in any 7 consecutive days
New regulations
  • 1,000 hours in any 365 consecutive days
  • 300 hours in any 90 consecutive days
  • 112 hours in any 28 consecutive days
Flight duty period
Previous regulations (1996)
  • 14 hours (aerial workers and air taxi operators) or
  • 13 hours, 45 minutes (commuter operations and airline operators)
New regulations
  • Maximum 9-13 hours – based on start time of day/sectors flown
Rest periods
Previous regulations (1996)
  • 8 hours plus time for meals, personal hygiene, and travel to and from suitable accommodation
New regulations
  • At home– 12 hours or 11 hours plus travel time, or 10 hours in suitable accommodation provided by the air operator
  • Away from home – 10 hours in suitable accommodation
Time free from duty
Previous regulations (1996)
  • 36 hours / 7 days; or
  • 3 days / 17 days; or
  • 3 periods x 24 hours / 30 days
  • 13 periods x 24 hours / 90 days.
New regulations
  • Option 1:
    • 1 single day free from duty per 7 consecutive days
    • 4 single days free from duty per 28 days
  • Option 2: 5 days off per 21 days
Consecutive night duties
Previous regulations (1996)
  • Not applicable
New regulations
  • Maximum of 3 nights of duty in a row without a rest during the night
  • If a rest is provided during the night, up to 5 consecutive nighttime duty periods
Fatigue Risk Management Systems
Previous regulations (1996)
  • No Fatigue Risk Management Systems option
New regulations
  • Option to use Fatigue Risk Management Systems
Coming into force
New regulations
  • 24 months for major Canadian airline operators (subpart 705)
  • 48 months for smaller and regional operators (subpart 704 and 703)

Fatigue Risk Management Systems

Transport Canada is committed to improving the safety of Canadians and to reducing fatigue for all flight crews.

The new regulations recognize that a one-size-fits-all approach may not work for everyone or under all circumstances. They include an option for operators to develop and implement a Fatigue Risk Management System to identify and minimize the sources of fatigue and manage fatigue risk in an operation.

A Fatigue Risk Management System is an overall risk management approach in which air operators:

  • identify hazards;
  • assess risk;
  • develop mitigation strategies;
  • provide fatigue management training and education;
  • use fatigue monitoring systems; and
  • improve processes to reflect changing circumstances and feedback.

A Fatigue Risk Management System provides an alternative for operators that may have constraints meeting the prescribed flight and duty time limits due to the unique nature of their operations (e.g., ultra‑long haul flights or flights serving northern and remote communities).

Example:

A cargo operator regularly flies from A (home base) to community B to off-load a large amount of supplies and then returns to A. There is a long layover at community B while supplies are being off‑loaded by airport employees. The entire route is in the same time zone. Including the time required for loading and unloading, the total duty time for the crew is 14 hours from start to finish.

Possible mitigations under Fatigue Risk Management System that may provide the operator to be exempted from prescribed flight duty time could include:

  • Providing a napping/rest facility where the pilot may rest during off loading and loading operations;
  • Limiting the number of consecutive shifts;
  • Providing a minimum of 2 days off duty each week; and
  • Avoiding schedules with early starts and late duties;

Over the next four years, Transport Canada specialists will support and work in close collaboration with northern and remote operators to help them develop and implement their own Fatigue Risk Management Systems.

Transport Canada will continue to work with operators to develop and refine guidance material, and build common tools to support their operations. This will be led by a Transport Canada Fatigue Risk Management System Special Advisor and in collaboration with industry through focus groups, workshops, and pilot projects.

The use of a Fatigue Risk Management System requires an organizational culture whereby fatigue risk management becomes as much a part of day-to-day operations as pre-flight checks and keeping pilot log books. A positive and supportive safety culture recognizes fatigue as an operational issue, and encourages open and honest reporting of fatigue and fatigue hazards.

This approach intersects with safety management systems, so air operators who already have Safety Management Systems in place can adapt their processes to manage fatigue-specific risks.

Transport Canada will review all systems to make sure they meet regulations. An air operator will only be allowed to operate flights under a Fatigue Risk Management System if the operator can demonstrate that safety is not affected.

December, 2018

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The representations by pilot groups, study groups, scientists and even laymen are to be congratulated on 40 years of tireless presentations, negotiations and dogged persistence.

While other countries dealt with the problem by recognizing and developing fatigue risk management processes, Canada was increasingly, embarassingly alone with its inappropriate regulations. Minister Garneau, it is a good start.

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2 years to implement for airlines.  4 years for smaller operators.  I believe my comment 'that's just nuts' would not be original on this file...

Hopefully the US will intervene (again) and sort out that wrinkle.  My own opinion here is that, without the NTSB, this change would still be destined for nowhere.  And for the next 2 years it will stay exactly there.

I wonder how many exemptions to the starting date are going to go out between now and then....

Vs.

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The 705 operators asked for two years to implement the new regulations because of the time it will take to rebuild crew planning and scheduling algorithms. That request came before the current strain on available qualified crew, so what choice did the Minister have? That said, I agree four years for 703 and 704 is too long.

Based on what I heard at meetings in the spring, the only exemptions will be for those elements of an operation that are subject to a fully implemented FRMS. No FRMS, you live with what's published. 

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Well, the cynic in me thinks that in two (four) years the public perception of this issue will be lower, 'we fixed it' mentality.  There is plenty of time for the lobbiests to make just about anything sound worthy of an exemption.  Add in an economic downturn and viola - we can't afford it.

WRT the airlines crying about the time it will take to rebuild crew planning.  I'm not arguing with you on what was said, but the airlines (really their lobby groups) are, frankly, full of crap and TC bought it.  One place that I have some familiarity with is not showing positions for an aircraft due on the line within a year from now.  Hiring is based on how many positions they are short.  So how can they only need a year to staff a new aircraft, but two to meet the regs?

Like I said, not aimed at you.  But an aerobatic aircraft can't spin at this rate...

Vs

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Using the current regs how would switching platforms ie A320 to B737 cause any serious crew planning issues vs rewriting the scheduling software for all fleets and subsequently likely adjusting departures times etc ?

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Adding a new fleet type is more disruptive because you have to maintain old and new crew complements, so there is a bump to manage.  Straight addition of pilots is simpler, they go direct to the fleet that needs them.

To be clear, these new rules do not negatively impact all fleets within an operator, or even all operators. Despite the lobbiest doomsday scenarios, the FRMS waiver is probably going to end up with some longer days than today for certain pairings.

Vs

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2 hours ago, Vsplat said:

Well, the cynic in me thinks that in two (four) years the public perception of this issue will be lower, 'we fixed it' mentality.  There is plenty of time for the lobbiests to make just about anything sound worthy of an exemption.  Add in an economic downturn and viola - we can't afford it.

WRT the airlines crying about the time it will take to rebuild crew planning.  I'm not arguing with you on what was said, but the airlines (really their lobby groups) are, frankly, full of crap and TC bought it.  One place that I have some familiarity with is not showing positions for an aircraft due on the line within a year from now.  Hiring is based on how many positions they are short.  So how can they only need a year to staff a new aircraft, but two to meet the regs?

Like I said, not aimed at you.  But an aerobatic aircraft can't spin at this rate...

Vs

While I was still at TC, one of the country's largest operators presented to us a highly detailed gap analysis and project plan. This was based on the proposed change to the regs as of three years ago. One of the largest hurdles they faced was the effect the regs would have on their training department to fill the necessary seats. Based on that plan, two years was plenty tight, IMHO, but they were willing to commit to it at the time - as was their pilot group.

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Here's some news coverage

https://toronto.citynews.ca/2018/12/12/pilot-fatigue/

Feds set new limits on pilot flight times to curb crew fatigue

BY THE CANADIAN PRESS

POSTED DEC 12, 2018 10:02 AM EST

 

LAST UPDATED DEC 12, 2018 AT 10:53 AM EST

NATIONAL THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

The federal government is enacting strict new measures to address mounting concerns about tired flight crews on commercial planes.

New regulations will set lower limits for the number of hours a pilot can be in the air and on duty before having to take a break.

The government plans to allow carriers that have a harder time meeting those hours to create fatigue-management systems to mitigate risks.

Transport Minister Marc Garneau says those systems will give specialty airlines, such as those in the North, a bit of flexibility.

Transport Canada will help airlines develop the new plans.

New rules are also being introduced to prohibit alcohol consumption for flight crew members 12 hours before duty, an increase from eight hours.

 

 

Edited by dagger

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Canada’s Aviation Fatigue Rules Less Safe than US

 
‎Today, ‎December ‎12, ‎2018, ‏‎2 hours ago | Peter Muir

Provided by Air Canada Pilots Association/CNW

New Fatigue Rules Brought in by Minister Garneau Too Risky for Overseas Flights at Night

TORONTO, Dec. 12, 2018 /CNW/ – The Air Canada Pilots Association, the largest single pilot group in Canada – representing more than 4,000 professional pilots across Canada who fly the vast majority of Canadian overseas flights, is gravely disappointed that Minister Garneau and the federal government are moving forward with substandard fatigue rules.

“To say that we are profoundly disappointed is an understatement. These substandard rules leave a two-hour gap between the maximum flight time for Canadian pilots flying at night, compared to what’s recommended by NASA’s Ames Research Centre, and two and a half hours longer than what U.S. pilots are allowed to fly,” said Captain Matt Hogan, Chair of the ACPA Master Elected Council. “It is unbelievable that in the face of scientific evidence and international best practice our government expects pilots to fly two hours longer than what NASA says is safe.”

The new rules will significantly impact Air Canada pilots flying for Air Canada Rouge, who will be subject to weaker fatigue regulations than on Air Canada’s mainline. ACPA had proposed that measures be put in place to protect all pilots flying overseas long-haul flights at night.

“This is the first time in 20 years that Canada has updated its fatigue rules, yet here the government is delaying implementation until 2022 for smaller operators,” said Milt Isaacs, CEO of ACPA. “The government’s own statistics conclusively prove that it’s these very pilots who need the most protection. It’s unacceptable that they’re forced to wait the longest for the new rules.”

Almost every prescriptive limit set out in the government’s regulations can be bypassed, thanks to the government’s Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS). The government spent a decade developing these new rules, and operators now have a way to bypass the new regulations. By the government’s own estimation, FRMS is expected to be implemented by operators on up to 20% of regulated flights, meaning that one fifth of flights would essentially have no effective oversight.

ACPA Fatigue Rules Backgrounder

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16 minutes ago, neverminds said:

This is probably a stupid question but is the12 hour bottle to report rule effective immediately or is their an implementation window for that as well?


 

Implementation, enforcement and service standards

These amendments will come into force:

For prescriptive rules:

  • Two years from the date of publication of the amendments in the Canada Gazette, Part II, for air operators subject to Subpart 705 of the CARs; and
  • Four years from the date of publication of the amendments in the Canada Gazette, Part II, for air operators subject to Subparts 703 and 704 of the CARs.

For FRMS:

  • Two years from the date of publication of the amendments in the Canada Gazette, Part II, for air operators subject to Subparts 702 and 705 of the CARs; and
  • Four years from the date of publication of the amendments in the Canada Gazette, Part II, for air operators subject to Subparts 703 and 704 of the CARs.

Between the publication of the amendments in the Canada Gazette, Part II, and their coming-into-force date, Transport Canada will communicate with affected air operators to promote the amendments and outline the FRMS option. Specific actions at this time may include

  • meeting with affected air operators including unions and industry associations;
  • working with air operators who are participating in FRMS pilot projects to identify and share best practices;
  • answering enquiries;
  • updating and publishing guidance materials; and
  • organizing information sessions to explain the amendments.

 

With respect to the alternative FRMS exemption mechanism, once an air operator submits a Notice of Intent, they can operate under an initial exemption for up to two years while validating a safety case, during which period they must report to Transport Canada at periodic intervals that an update of their progress is available for inspection. Once an air operator has validated their safety case, they must submit it to Transport Canada for approval before they can use a continuing exemption to operate specific flights while varying from the prescriptive regime. If an air operator does not maintain their FRMS and does not ensure that the safety case continues to effectively manage the levels of fatigue and alertness of flight crew members, they must revert to prescriptive rules.

Transport Canada will enforce these amendments by

  • imposing monetary penalties under sections 7.6 to 8.2 of the Aeronautics Act, which carry a maximum fine of $5,000 for individuals and $25,000 for corporations;
  • suspending or cancelling a Canadian aviation document; or
  • taking legal action by way of indictable offence or summary conviction, as applicable under section 7.3 of the Aeronautics Act.

Transport Canada will conduct its implementation, compliance promotion and enforcement activities with existing resources, within the existing departmental reference level.

. http://gazette.gc.ca/rp-pr/p2/2018/2018-12-12/html/sor-dors269-eng.html

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8 hours ago, Malcolm said:

Any effect on commuters?

Not sure. 

There is a mention of companies needing to designate a pilot’s base. I would assume this is to establish a pilot’s acclimatized time zone which means no recognition of one’s domicile as a starting point.

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14 minutes ago, Critter said:

Not sure. 

There is a mention of companies needing to designate a pilot’s base. I would assume this is to establish a pilot’s acclimatized time zone which means no recognition of one’s domicile as a starting point.

Thanks , it seems it will be "interesting" times for all involved.  Good luck to all.

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Nothing for commuters. TC wouldn’t touch that one. They even removed the existing requirement for the pilot to show up rested/fit for duty (fatigue related) because it was not legally enforceable as per their legal.

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