20 Dec 2010

Flying schools welcome safety standards inquiry

8:06 pm on 20 December 2010

Flying schools are welcoming an inquiry into pilot training safety standards by the Transport Accident Investigation Commission.

The commission is concerned at seven deaths in training crashes since 2000 and a near-doubling of near-misses in the same period.

It is calling for public submissions to see whether systemic or other matters are affecting pilot training.

The Aviation Industry Assocation's chief executive, Irene King, says there are now about 50 flying schools, as well as aero clubs. There has been a tremendous growth in flight training, she says.

Of 131 near-misses in the past 10 years, the commission says, nearly half involved pilots undergoing training, including some with instructors on board.

The death toll of seven in training crashes since 2000 compares to none in the previous 10 years.

Submissions to the commission close in February.