ICAO Doc 9870 Manual on the Prevention of Runway Incursions

ICAO Doc 9870 Manual on the Prevention of Runway Incursions


While runway safety takes into account issues such as foreign object debrisanimals straying onto the runway and other logistical deficiencies, this manual specifically addresses the subject of runway incursion prevention as it relates to the safe operation of aircraft, air traffic management, vehicle movement on the manoeuvring area and aerodrome management. Survey data have shown that pilots, drivers and controllers consider runway incursions and the potential for collisions to be the most significant risk in aerodrome operations.

Successful prevention of runway incursions requires the collaboration of air traffic controllers, pilots, vehicle drivers and aerodrome management. This manual is intended for regulators, aerodrome designers and planners, aircraft operators, air navigation service providers, aerodrome operators and investigation boards within:

  1. States having yet to commence a runway safety initiative;
  2. States seeking additional guidance;
  3. States having existing runway safety or reporting systems in place and seeking global harmonization; and
  4. States seeking harmonization with ICAO safety management system (SMS) provisions.

This manual aims primarily to provide global guidance essential for the implementation of national or local runway safety programmes. Such initiatives aim to remove hazards and minimize the residual risk of runway incursions and to reduce active failures and the severity of their consequences. In all aspects of this manual, the principles of safety management systems (SMS) should be used to mitigate or eliminate the hazardous factors.

Beginning with a high-level discussion of causal factors, the manual explores the factors that can result in runway incursions. Initiatives are also identified that aircraft and aerodrome operators and air navigation service providers can adopt to remove hazards, mitigate residual risks and create a cooperative, effective and safe operational environment.

Much can be learned by analysing previous incidents and accidents. A standardized runway incursion initial report form and a runway incursion causal factors identification form are included (Appendices F and G respectively) which will facilitate a global approach to data collection. Comprehensive analyses of data are essential to distinguish trends and causal factors and develop cost-effective risk reduction strategies.

runway incursion severity classification (RISC) calculator is also available (see Appendix H). Use of the RISC calculator will enable a consistent assessment to be made of the severity of runway incursion events.

Information about a computer programme Aerodrome Runway Incursion Assessment (ARIA) that can help local runway safety teams to identify factors that contribute to runway incursions at a specific aerodrome is provided at Appendix I.

Safety initiatives addressing awareness, training infrastructure, and procedures and technologies such as the ICAO Runway Safety Toolkit are available (see Appendix J). (Note: the EUROCONTROL Runway Safety Toolkit referred to in Appendix K is no longer available). Educational material for pilots, controllers, vehicle drivers and aerodrome operators is described. Finally, guidance is offered on how individual States can implement or improve runway incursion prevention safety programmes. Core to these initiatives is the uniform application of ICAO provisions which will ensure consistency of safe operations on the manoeuvring area.


ICAO Doc 9870 contains ten appendices as follows:

Related Articles

Further Reading


SKYbrary Partners:

Safety knowledge contributed by: