Cameo: CASA leads the way with alcohol and other drug regulation
CASA leads the way with alcohol and other drug regulation
Alcohol and other drug regulations for the aviation industry officially came into effect in September 2008, after years of preparation by CASA staff. Governor General Quentin Bryce assented to Civil Aviation Safety Regulation Part 99 as one of her first formal duties on 18 September 2008. The new rules were launched the following day by the then Director of Aviation Safety, Bruce Byron, and CASA’s Pooshan Navathe and Brenda Cattle, at the Regional Aviation Association of Australia convention in Queensland.
The introduction of the new rules for aviation follows the introduction of alcohol and other drug regulations in other Australian transport industries. The need for the rules was identified following an Australian Transport Safety Bureau report into a fatal aircraft accident that occurred near Hamilton Island in 2002.
Testing of the estimated 120,000 safety sensitive personnel currently working in the aviation industry in Australia commenced in April 2009. Symbion, an independent testing provider working on behalf of CASA, will perform approximately 6,000 random alcohol and other drug tests during the first 12 months of the new regime.
The legislation also required relevant organisations within the industry to introduce drug and alcohol management programs within six months of the introduction of the new rules. CASA drug and alcohol advisers also conducted a national series of workshops for organisations identified as requiring a drug and alcohol management program, including assistance in developing a program and training for program supervisors.
CASA will continue to consult widely to ensure that the implementation of the new rules is not placing any unintended burden on the industry and that a national code of practice is being applied.