TRANSPORT CANADA (TC)
REGULATING SAFETY STANDARDS FOR GLIDING CLUBS
Transport Canada (TC) is the regulatory agency for aviation in Canada. As of this time, gliding clubs are not held to the same regulated safety standards as powered flight beyond basic licensing requirements.
Transport Canada conducted an enforcement investigation into this accident, but was limited in scope by what the legislation allowed. It has no mandate to enforce the criminal code and the RCMP acts only as an assisting organization to Transport Canada. Transport Canada plans on performing surveillance activities at Cu Nim to ensure airworthiness and proper training protocols in the future.
This accident further demonstrates that the “see and avoid” principle cannot be solely relied on, and should be used in complement with aircraft collision avoidance systems. FLARMS work if they are maintained and warning signals are not ignored and it is our belief that aircraft collision avoidance systems should be standard equipment in all gliders and tow planes.
The Soaring Association of Canada (SAC) is a voluntary network of gliding clubs that can only make recommendations, not regulations. The SAC has been providing grants for several years to equip clubs with FLARMs. In 2019 the SAC reported 69% equipage. The cost of a FLARM is $1,000-$2,000 which is less than half of the cost of this website.
For those that choose to ignore voluntary guidelines and put others at risk, the best way to ensure safety and accountability is through legislation.
To help make effective changes, please assist us in lobbying Transport Canada to mandate the use of aircraft collision avoidance systems (like PowerFLARMs) or regulate private gliding clubs beyond licensing requirements.
A generic letter had been provided on this website to be forwarded to the Minister of Transport and your own Member of Parliament.
Concern is a good start, to act on that concern is to care.
Personal Note: If your child is interested in aviation, we encourage you to visits Air Cadets at www.cadets.ca where the training is under structured military regulation and the staff are accountable for the student’s safety.