10th April 2020
Established 1872. Online since 1996.

Westminster debate on Civil Aviation Authority to be heard this week

MPs are this week due to debate proposals to centralise air traffic control services.

It comes after Isles MP Alistair Carmichael announced he would lead parliamentary discussions on the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

On Monday it emerged Shetland Islands Council was joining the other island group authorities in Orkney and the Western Isles to oppose the air traffic control proposals.

Mr Carmichael said the debate was an opportunity to raise important issues surrounding aviation safety in the Northern Isles.

It comes in the wake of an incident at Kirkwall Airport last year, in which a flight took off without air traffic control support, as well as the proposal by Highlands and Islands Airports (Hial) to centralise air traffic control to Inverness.

Alistair Carmichael. Photo: Dave Donaldson

Mr Carmichael said: “I am glad that we have secured this debate, on a topic that is crucial to our communities in the isles. Air services are lifeline services. Local people deserve reassurance that these flights are safe.

“I have voiced my concerns before about the transparency of the CAA’s reporting into the incident at Kirkwall Airport last year. I hope that this will be the start of renewed attention on the CAA’s efforts. Transparency is the foundation of our trust in aviation safety.

“That transparency must also be practised by Hial. Their repeated assertion that their centralisation of air traffic control in Inverness has not properly addressed the professional objections that have been raised against it.”

Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to editorial@shetlandtimes.co.uk for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.