Baltic Sea flight safety meeting decided to prepare new recommendations to improve safety

3/2/17, 5:20 PM

The flight safety meeting concluded that the recommendations issued in 2015 have led to positive developments at the Baltic Sea.

Trafi organised today an expert meeting on flight safety over the Baltic Sea together with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). The aim of the meeting was to determine how the recommendations for improving flight safety as agreed in the ICAO Baltic Sea Project Team in 2015 have been implemented, and the need for any new actions.

Besides representatives from Baltic Sea coastal states, i.e. Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Sweden, participants from NATO, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol) were invited to the meeting. It was arranged by Finland with the support of ICAO and chaired by Mr. Kari Siekkinen, Chief Adviser of Trafi. The same parties also participated in the Project Team on flight safety over the Baltic Sea in 2015.

Finland has taken initiative to organise the flight safety meeting and furthered discussions on flight safety over the Baltic Sea.

Measures already implemented have had a positive impact on safety

The recommendations issued in 2015 concerned, for instance, the collection and publication by ICAO of operating procedures for the busiest parts of airspace (hot spots) as well as due regard procedures for state aircraft. Moreover, the recommendations addressed the exchange of state air traffic pictures, the publication of standardised waypoints, and solutions to problems related to flight plan data.

The publication by ICAO of a bulletin with advice to aviators on the subject was regarded as particularly useful. In addition, waypoints established in the international sea area have now been utilized in flight planning, which has contributed to the foreseeability of air operations. ICAO has also published operating procedures for state aircraft as agreed.

In the meeting today, it was decided that operating procedures to comply with best practices in aviation will be widely collected and published for the use of the international aviation community.

The meeting also discussed about the use of transponders. The participants shared the view that increasing the use of transponders would be one element to enhance the traffic picture at air traffic control, thus further improving flight safety. Practical measures will be prepared in co-operation between ICAO, NATO, EASA, Eurocontrol and the Baltic states.

It is still necessary to finalize the issues addressed in today’s meeting, and the countries must agree on practical arrangements. For this purpose, Trafi invited the participants to a new meeting to be held in late May or early June.

Further information:
Mr. Kari Siekkinen, Chief Adviser
Requests for interviews: Ms. Anna Jokela, Communications Director, tel. +358 400 439955