Reporting, analysis and follow-up of occurrences in civil aviation is currently regulated in Europe by two main regulations: Regulation (EU) No 376/2014 and Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/1018.
Regulation (EU) No 376/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council was adopted on 3 April 2014 and it deals with the reporting, analysis and follow-up of occurrences in civil aviation. The regulation also amends Regulation (EU) No 996/2010 on the investigation and prevention of accidents and incidents in civil aviation and repeals Directive 2003/42/EC on occurrence reporting in civil aviation and Commission regulations (EC) No 1321/2007 and (EC) No 1330/2007.
Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/1018 of 29 June 2015 lays down a list classifying occurrences in civil aviation to be mandatorily reported according to Regulation (EU) No 376/2014.
Regulation (EU) No 376/2014 aims to improve aviation safety by ensuring that relevant safety information relating to civil aviation is reported, collected, stored, protected, exchanged, disseminated and analysed. The Regulation ensures the continued availability of safety information by introducing rules on confidentiality and on the appropriate use of information and through the harmonised and enhanced protection of reporters and persons mentioned in occurrence reports.
Regulation (EU) No 376/2014 lays down rules on:
- the reporting of occurrences which endanger or which, if not corrected or addressed, would endanger an aircraft, its occupants, any other person, equipment or installation affecting aircraft operations (mandatory reporting); and the reporting of other relevant safety-related information in that context (voluntary reporting);
- analysis and follow-up action in respect of reported occurrences and other safety-related information;
- the protection of aviation professionals;
- appropriate use collected safety information;
- the integration of information into the European Central Repository; and
- the dissemination of anonymised information to interested parties for the purpose of providing such parties with the information they need in order to improve aviation safety.
Occurrences which may represent a significant risk to aviation safety are to be reported through the mandatory occurrence reporting systems.
Each aeronautical service provider established in a EU Member State must have in place a mandatory reporting system to facilitate the collection of details of occurrences. Each Member State must have in place a mandatory reporting system to facilitate the collection of details of occurrences collected by aeronautical service providers. The European Aviation Safety Agency must have in place a mandatory reporting system to facilitate the collection of details of occurrences, including those collected by organisations which have been certified or approved directly by the Agency.
The following natural persons are to report occurrences through the system established by the aeronautical service provider which employs, contracts or uses the services of the reporter or, failing that, through the system established by the Member State of establishment of their organisation, or by the State which issued, validated or converted the pilot's licence, or through the system established by EASA:
- the pilot in command, or, in cases where the pilot in command is unable to report the occurrence, any other crew member next in the chain of command of an aircraft registered in a EU Member State or an aircraft registered outside the EU but used by an operator for which a EU Member State ensures oversight of operations or an operator established in the EU;
- a person engaged in designing, manufacturing, continuous airworthiness monitoring, maintaining or modifying an aircraft, or any equipment or part thereof, under the oversight of a EU Member State or of EASA;
- a person who signs an airworthiness review certificate, or a release to service in respect of an aircraft or any equipment or part thereof, under the oversight of a EU Member State or of EASA;
- a person who performs a function which requires him or her to be authorised by a EU Member State as a staff member of an air traffic service provider entrusted with responsibilities related to air navigation services or as a flight information service officer;
- a person who performs a function connected with the safety management of an airport to which Regulation (EC) No 1008/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council applies;
- a person who performs a function connected with the installation, modification, maintenance, repair, overhaul, flight-checking or inspection of air navigation facilities for which a EU Member State ensures the oversight;
- a person who performs a function connected with the ground handling of aircraft, including fuelling, load sheet preparation, loading, de-icing and towing at an airport covered by Regulation (EC) No 1008/2008.
These natural persons are to report occurrences within 72 hours of becoming aware of the occurrence, unless exceptional circumstances prevent this. Following the notification of an occurrence, any aeronautical service provider established in a EU Member State shall report to the competent authority of that Member State, or the EASA if certified or approved by EASA, the details of occurrences collected as soon as possible, and in any event no later than 72 hours after becoming aware of the occurrence.
Aeronautical service providers established in a EU Member State must have in place a voluntary reporting system to facilitate the collection of details of occurrences that may not be captured by the mandatory reporting system and other safety-related information which is perceived by the reporter as an actual or potential hazard to aviation safety. Each EU Member State and the EASA must have in place their respective voluntary reporting systems to facilitate the collection of such information.
The voluntary reporting systems is to be used to facilitate the collection of details of occurrences and safety-related information not subject to mandatory reporting pursuant and reported by persons who are not required to submit mandatory reports.
Each aeronautical service provider established in a EU Member State is to report, in a timely manner, to the competent authority of that Member State, or to the EASA if certified or approved by EASA, the details of occurrences and other safety-related information.
European Central Repository
The European Commission manages a European Central Repository to store all occurrence reports collected in the EU. Each EU Member State, in agreement with the European Commission, is to update the European Central Repository by transferring to it all information relating to safety stored in the national databases.
The EASA is to agree with the European Commission the technical protocols for transferring to the European Central Repository of all occurrence reports collected by EASA under Regulation (EU) No 2018/1139 and its implementing rules, particularly for occurrences stored in the Internal Occurrence Reporting System (IORS), as well as the information collected pursuant to regulation (EU) 376/2014. The European Commission, by means of implementing acts, is to adopt the arrangements for the management of the European Central Repository.
The EU Member States and the EASA are to participate in an exchange of information by making all information relating to safety stored in their respective reporting databases available to the competent authorities of the other EU Member States, the EASA and the European Commission, through the European Central Repository. Occurrence reports are to be transferred to the European Central Repository no later than 30 days after having been entered in the national database. Occurrence reports are to be updated whenever necessary with additional information relating to safety.
The detailed classification to be referred to when reporting occurrences, through mandatory reporting systems, pursuant to regulation (EU) No 376/2014 is set out in Annexes I to V to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/1018.
Annex I: Occurrences related to the operation of the aircraft
- Air operations
- Technical occurrences
- Interaction with air navigation services (ANS) and air traffic management (ATM)
- Emergencies and other critical situations
- External environment and meteorology
Annex II: Occurrences related to technical conditions, maintenance and repair of the aircraft
- Maintenance and continuing airworthiness management
Annex III: Occurrences related to air navigation services and facilities
- Aircraft-related occurrences
- Degradation or total loss of services or functions
- Other occurrences
Annex IV: Occurrences related to aerodromes and ground services
- Safety management of an aerodrome
- Ground handling of an aircraft
Annex V: Occurrences related to aircraft other than complex motor-powered aircraft, including sailplanes and lighter-than-air vehicles
- Aircraft other than complex motor-powered aircraft excluding sailplanes and lighter-than-air vehicles
- Sailplanes (gliders)
- Lighter-than-air vehicles (balloons and airships)
Comparison with Directive 2003/42/EC
Regulation (EU) No 376/2014 and its Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/1018 repeal Directive 2003/42/EC. As compared with the repealed Directive, the currently applicable regulations provide for new requirements.
In Directive 2003/42/EC the implementation of voluntary reporting systems was not mandatory, whereas instead this requirement has mandatory character in Regulation (EU) No 376/2014.
EASA, referred to as ‘Agency’ in Regulation (EU) No 376/2014, was not required to be involved in the collection and transfer of mandatory and voluntary reports in Directive 2003/42/EC, whereas instead it now is the recipient of the requirements of Regulation (EU) No 376/2014.
The organisation of the list of classifying occurrences in Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/1018 to be reported under mandatory reporting schemes differs significantly from that of the list of occurrences reported in Directive 2003/42/EC. Notably Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2015/1018 includes as classifying occurrences those related to aircraft other than complex motor-powered aircraft, including sailplanes and lighter-than-air vehicles, which Directive 2003/42/EC did not include within scope.