UN: ICAO member states recommend aircraft tracking every 15 minutes

New York, US (PANA) - Member states of the UN International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) have recommended the adoption of a 15-minute aircraft tracking standard that will be an
important first step in providing a foundation for global flight tracking.

The recommendation was made by the more than 850 participants at the ICAO's 2015 High-Level Safety Conference held at organisation's headquarters in Montreal, Canada, according to a UN statement obtained by PANA here Thursday.

It said concerns over aircraft tracking and risks to civil aviation arising from conflict zones were brought to the fore in the wake of the 2014 downing of a Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine, and the disappearance of another Malaysian Airlines flight upon take off from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

It quoted ICAO Council President Olumuyiwa Bernard Aliu as saying: "This new Standard
will be an important first step in providing a foundation for global flight tracking and the future
implementation of the more comprehensive ICAO Global Aeronautical Distress and Safety
System (GADSS).

"Through an expedited process, it will now be sent to our member states before the end of
the month for formal comment and we are anticipating its adoption by the ICAO Council as
early as this fall.''

He said the ICAO member states also supported developing a prototype online resource for conflict zone risk assessments.

According to him: "Under the Chicago Convention, each state is responsible for assessing
civil aviation conflict zone risks in their territories, and for making that information promptly
available to other States and airlines.''

"The Task Force we convened after the loss of MH17 identified that both states and airlines
could benefit from greater information sharing on conflict zones, including risks assessments
for a given conflict area, and that a centralised online resource could help facilitate the
exchange of information needed to achieve that objective," he said, referring to the downing of the Malaysia Airlines flight.

The intention is for this central repository to be hosted by ICAO and to serve as a single source for up-to-date risk assessments from states and relevant international organisations.

Other priorities supported by the conference include the harmonisation of terminology used for risk assessments, a comprehensive review of existing requirements and message formats, and industry led-initiatives to share operational information and be more transparent with passengers on conflict zone risk methodologies being applied.

ICAO, a specialised UN agency tasked with coordinating and regulating international air travel,
sets rules of airspace, aircraft registration and safety.
-0- PANA AA/SEG 5Feb2015

05 february 2015 08:05:30

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