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Fatigue risk management involves operators and pilots taking steps to manage increasing levels of fatigue so that it does not result in a safety risk.
Modernising Australia's fatigue rules
CASA has finalised the fatigue rules in CAO 48.1 Instrument 2019 (the 2019 rules) in response to the independent review and industry consultation. The instrument will have a staged commencement over 2019 and 2020.
The independent review confirmed the need to modernise Australia's fatigue rules for air operators and pilots in its final report delivered to the CASA Board in March 2018.
The final report included 24 recommendations to improve and implement the fatigue rules contained in CAO 48.1 Instrument 2013.
The independent review provided an evaluation of the safety rationale for updating the rules, processes underpinning their development and communication to industry, their scientific basis and validity, international alignment, and their impact on the Australian aviation industry.
For more detail download the:
- Independent review of aviation fatigue rules for operators and pilots (pdf 949.94 KB)
- Modernising Australia’s fatigue rules: CASA response to the independent review recommendations (pdf 378.92 KB).
Consultation on the proposed CAO 48.1 Instrument 2019 closed on 10 February 2019. The summary of consultation – summarising the feedback received – is available, and you can read the responses to our consultation where permission has been granted to publish.
The 2019 rules include transitional provisions for existing operators.
- New operators - application for AOC or Part 141 certificate after commencement of the 2019 rules
Comply with CAO 48.1 Instrument 2019 immediately; assessment will be against the new rules.
- New operators - application for AOC or Part 141 certificate before commencement of the 2019 rules
Comply with CAO 48.1 Instrument 2013 guidance (pdf 877.04 KB) (as amended); assessment will be against the 2013 rules (as amended).
Transition to the 2019 rules on or before 1 July 2020 by submitting amended manuals that comply with the 2019 rules.
Submit an application for a Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS) no later than 30 June 2020 and conduct operations under an FRMS trial on or before 1 October 2020.
- Existing operators with a CASA approved Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS) under CAO 48.1 Instrument 2013
A CASA approved FRMS (including trial FRMS) under CAO 48.1 Instrument 2013 continues until the expiry date of that approval. Renewal of the approval (or full approval) will be assessed under the 2019 rules.
- High capacity regular public transport (High-cap RPT) operators – seating capacity exceeding 38 seats or payload exceeding 4200kg
High-cap RPT operators must transition to the new rules (either trial FRMS or prescriptive limits) no later than 30 June 2020.
- High-cap RPT operators that intend to operate under a Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS) are required to submit an FRMS application no later than 30 November 2019.
- High-cap RPT operators that do not intend to operate under an FRMS (i.e. intend to operate to prescriptive limits) are required to provide CASA with a transition plan no later than 30 November 2019 unless they currently comply with the 2013 fatigue rules.
- In either case, no later than 30 November 2019, High-cap RPT operators must satisfy CASA about the effective functioning, in the fatigue risk management context, of their safety management systems (SMS) and human factors and non-technical skills (HF&NTS) program.
- All other existing operators (other than High-cap RPT) – AOC or Part 141 certificate first issued prior to commencement of the 2019 rules
Existing operators, other than High-cap RPT, must transition to prescriptive limits or submit an FRMS application no later than 30 June 2020 (the 2019 rules will apply from 1 July 2020). However, operators who apply for an FRMS by 30 June 2020 have an additional 3 months for the FRMS to be assessed and therefore must be operating under a trial FRMS implementation approval (or revert to prescriptive limits) no later than 30 September 2020 (the 2019 rules will apply to them from 1 October 2020).
- All operators – early opt in
Operators may tell CASA in writing that they intend to comply with the 2019 rules from a specified date prior to the transition deadline.
The following links provide information to help you understand and apply the fatigue rules set out in CAO 48.1 Instrument 2019: