Pacific Aviation COVID-19 Safety Training

By Adorina Massing

echnical teams from seven Pacific civil aviation authorities and airports have recently undertook a strategic online COVID-19 Airport Operational Safety training to prepare them once aviation recommences in the Pacific.

The Pacific Aviation Safety Office (PASO) delivered the online participative training session for 25 participants from PASO Member States’ civil aviation authorities and airport technical teams including the Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu on August 13th.

Led by PASO’s Aviation Specialist, Mike Haines, the online training was aimed at educating states on international aviation guidance and preparing Pacific countries for a safe, secure and sustainable flight operations once airports have reopened, as part of PASO’s strategic COVID-19 Aviation Recovery program.

The PASO COVID-19 airport restart operational training was specially tailored for PASO’s Member States for their aviation environments and enabled with strategic funding from the World Bank.

PASO General Manager, Andrew Valentine said, “PASO is committed to ensuring aviation can safely resume in the Pacific.”

“In practical terms, this means civil aviation authorities and airport technical teams need to know the latest international ICAO standards, COVID19 safety operational measures, the tools and resources they can access, as well as their obligations to ensure the public can safely travel, cargo can be transported and aviation workplaces are safe for aviation personnel.

“This includes adherence to international ICAO standards to ensure safe operations during the COVID19 pandemic and including how to reduce the spread of COVID-19, enable repatriation flights and aviation public health corridors, and how to safely prepare for the eventual return to increased volumes of commercial aviation in the Pacific.

“We recognise it is critical that passengers, aviation workers and the general public have confidence in Pacific nations’ COVID-19 aviation safety public health measures and feel safe to fly.

“Aviation is a critical driver for the Pacific’s economic recovery, and it is PASO’s role to support our members to enable this.”

“We are working with our Pacific members to maintain the validity of their certificates, licenses and other approvals during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The PASO online training webinar provided an overview of ICAO COVID-19 related guidance and covered the technical subjects of COVID-19 Contingency Related Differences (CCRD), ICAO Council Aviation Recovery Task Force (CART) Guidance about air travel through the COVID-19 public health crisis, and a practical checklist for restarting aerodrome operations.