Know Your Air Carrier

Written By: John Grieve
Regional Enforcement Examiner,
National Transportation Agency of Canada,
Ontario Region
Originally Published in the July 1988
issue of The Outfitter Magazine.

 

For the majority of the population, the arrival of spring is signalled by the appearance of the first Robin, home from the sunny south, but for me, the first sign of spring is the announcement of the annual sport fishing and hunting shows. For it’s at these shows that I have the opportunity to meet many of the people involved in fly-in fishing and hunting.

What better way to learn about what’s going on in aviation than to meet and talk to the people who provide the air services as well as the lodge owners who use the services of licensed air carriers.

As Regional Enforcement Examiner, for the new National Transportation Agency of Canada in Ontario, part of my responsibilities are to seek out illegal air services (ie) air services provided to the public by an individual who does not have the license , not the qualifications which accompany the license. In this regard the National Transportation Agency is assisted, through a Memorandum of Understanding, by the RCMP who have jurisdiction over prosecution of unlicensed offenders.

Licensed air carriers providing service to the public are required by law to meet demanding qualifications respecting pilot proficiency, aircraft maintenance, and liability insurance, whereas unlicensed individuals offering air services to the public do not carry commercial insurance for public liability, their aircraft are not subject to commercial maintenance standards, and the pilot qualifications are unknown.

The customer rarely concerns himself with the legality of the service. I have found that most people either assume the carrier must have the proper operating authority or the lower cost of the fly-in trip is just too much of a bargain to turn down. Little does the passenger realize or even consider the risks they are taking.

Through cooperation, and communication with air carriers, lodge owners, and tourist outfitters, it is our hope that unlicensed air services will be discouraged.

My association with the air carrier members of N.O.T.O. has afforded me the opportunity to deal with a very special group of people, who provide a very unique service.

The Canadian bush operator is truly one of those mystical characters that offer true wilderness adventure to the public at large. The cost of providing a safe and efficient service is high, but consider the costs to your industry if your guests are injured through flying with an unlicensed or improperly licensed operator.

Now that the tourist season is upon us, I will be making my rounds visiting licensed air carriers, answering their questions, and monitoring the trends in aviation.

In addition to assisting air carriers with their concerns, the National Transportation Agency is always available to address your questions respecting air carrier licenses.

If in doubt, ask questions, and be aware of the proper requirements respecting licensed air services. Please feel free to contact us at our Toronto office. 

 

NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION
AGENCY OF CANADA
200 TOWN CENTRE COURT,
SUITE NO. 218
SCARBOROUGH, ONTARIO
M1P 4X8
(416) 973-4595

Or

THE SECRETARY
NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION
AGENCY OF CANADA
15 EDDY STREET
HULL, QUEBEC
K1A 0N9
(819) 997-0677

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