§ Mr. Churchill
asked the Secretary of State for Transport to what extent Dassault Falcon aircraft used by 365W Flight Refuelling Ltd. in respect of a Royal Navy contract meet the required Civil Aviation Authority standards of operation; what steps he has taken to satisfy himself that, in the absence of any approved operations manual, the authority is able adequately to monitor the operations of these aircraft; and what is his policy towards future public sector contracts let on the basis of fleets of foreign-registered aircraft which do not have to comply with the air navigation orders.
§ Mr. Michael Spicer
The aircraft being used by Flight Refuelling Ltd. are registered in the USA and technically it falls to the Federal Aviiation Authority to supervise their operation. The Civil Aviation Authority has, however, suggested to the FAA that the CAA should exercise supervision. New contracts to be let by the Ministry of Defence to civilian operators will include a condition requiring operators of foreign-registered aircraft to satisfy the CAA they can undertake work safely and competently.
My right hon. Friend's permission is required under the Air Navigation Order 1985 before a foreign-registered aircraft can be used in the United Kingdom for public transport. My Department will shortly be consulting the industry on a proposal to amend the order so that permission is also needed before foreign-registered aircraft can undertake any form of aerial work in the United Kingdom. Such an amendment would mean that, where necessary, the CAA could then directly supervise operators of foreign aircraft undertaking aerial work in this country.