Professional flight training to continue under latest lockdown

Professional flight training is allowed to continue under the latest lockdown rules imposed across England and the other nations of the UK.

The Department for Transport issued new guidance for General Aviation late on Tuesday, 5 January. It says, “Flying training organisations providing training for professional pilots, for the purposes of work, may continue to do so. Individuals undertaking such activity may continue to attend for these purposes. Social distancing measures must be in place and observed at all times.”

The CAA has cancelled all UK examinations until the end of February 2021. The Authority said, “In line with the recent government announcement of a National lockdown, along with the restrictions in Scotland, the UK CAA senior management team have concluded that all exams scheduled to be sat must be cancelled from next week until the end of February 2021. This applies to both flight crew and aircraft maintenance engineers.

“Candidates with bookings will receive a notification when their exam is cancelled, and the fees will be returned to the portal account which made the booking.

“Current bookings in place for March will remain but no further bookings will be permitted at this time due to the uncertainty, this also includes dates for booking after March which are not open yet.

“This will be reviewed in February and a decision will be made in line with government guidelines as the situation develops.”

GA flying

GA flying is also permitted for purposes of work where it is not reasonably possible to work or provide those services at home. Again, social distancing measures must be in place and observed at all times.

However, leisure flying is not permitted under the latest lockdown rules in England. “Engine health and maintenance check flights can only take place where there is a critical safety requirement to do so, and alternative options are not available,” said the DfT. “Such flights, where conducted, must be kept to the minimum duration possible and should land at the same airfield from which they departed, except where this is outside the reasonable control of the pilot.”

The DfT has also issued advice on protective measures for those businesses that are allowed to operate in England. That advice is here.

Advice for other nations in the UK can be found at these links:

Northern Ireland

What do the ATOs say?

Skyborne Airline Academy

Leading Edge Aviation

Bristol Groundschool

FTA Global