SSAA Employees/Contractors - Information and Responsibilities
Who are SSAA employees?
SSAA employees (including contractors) are anyone who are performing Safety Sensitive Aviation Activities (SSAA), activities that have a direct or indirect impact on the safe operation of an aircraft. For example, flight crew, cabin crew, ground handlers, maintenance, aircraft dispatchers, aviation security , refuellers and anyone who is working airside. The regulations provide a full list in 99.015 - see ‘Need more information?’ below.
How does my organisation’s drug and alcohol management plan (DAMP) affect me?
Certain organisations must implement a DAMP which includes, for example, an education program as well as drug and alcohol testing.
Education - SSAA employees must do drug and alcohol education before performing SSAA duties and at least every 30 months. They must be aware of their organisation’s drug and alcohol policy.
Drug and Alcohol Testing - a SSAA employee is subject to DAMP organisation testing as well as CASA testing.
Drug and Alcohol Testing
DAMP organisation testing
- When 'First joins' organisation
- Post accident/serious incident
- Reasonable grounds
- Return to work after a positive test
Type of testing:
- Breath Alcohol test
- Oral fluid or urine drug test
No notice or random testing. Anywhere, anytime
Type of testing:
- Breath Alcohol test
- Oral fluid drug test
What are my individual responsibilities?
A SSAA employee:
- Must not perform or be available to perform SSAA if they are aware that they are adversely affected by drugs or alcohol
- Should disclose if they have consumed alcohol or are taking a drug that may affect their ability to carry out their duties
- Should seek support and assistance services if drug and alcohol use has become problematic
- Should know who their DAMP Supervisor is and what responsibilities that person has in relation to drug and alcohol management.
Aviation safety and YOU
Aviation relies on the combined efforts of a vast integrated network of skilled people; Air and ground crew, engineers, airport staff, air traffic controllers are just some of those working behind the scenes. They are all interconnected in a way that a single bad decision in one area can affect all the rest. In aviation, to operate safely, risks must be managed. One risk that can be removed is mistakes made by those affected by alcohol or other drugs. Alcohol and other drugs seriously affect performance.
Q - I’m starting a new job soon, how do I find a drug & alcohol testing provider?
A - The organisation that is employing you should advise you of an accredited testing facility in your area. It is the organisations responsibility to ensure all SSAA employees have been tested according to the relevant standards, as required under their DAMP.
Q - What medications can I take when performing SSAA?
A - CASA cannot provide advice in relation to what medications you can or cannot take or advice on quantities. Medications and combinations of medications affect individuals in different ways. Your doctor, pharmacist or Designated Aviation Medical Examiner (DAME) is the person to seek advice from.
You also have a responsibility to advise your DAMP Supervisor or manager if you are taking any medications which could affect your fitness for SSAA duties, or if it contains a testable substance.
Q - What if I test positive to a CASA random test?
A - You must cease SSAA immediately. The case will be reviewed by the CASA Medical Review Officer (MRO) and if the result is verified as a positive, the following steps will be taken:
A comprehensive assessment would be conducted. The assessment may recommend an intervention program such as education, counselling and/or treatment. An MRO must be satisfied that the person is fit to return to work and a negative test result is received at the time.
Q - What if I refuse to take a drug or alcohol test? Or interfere with test?
A - It is considered to be a positive test result. You must immediately cease SSAA. Before returning to SSAA you will need to be taken through the organisation’s or CASA’s response program.
Need more information?
- Education - CASA DAMP eLearning information please go to the DAMP eLearning
- CASA testing: Direct your enquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Part 99 or your organisation’s DAMP: Contact your organisation’s DAMP Supervisor
- Contact CASA - either contact your regional office or call 131 757 or +61 2 6217 1111 (from outside Australia) to be put through to your CASA regional office.