Random alcohol testing of aircrews is coming to Europe
The introduction of this new rule will happen no later than 2020. At the end of February, the EU Member States in the so-called ‘EASA Committee' approved a set of rules, including random alcohol checks of crews as part of the ramp inspection programmes. These new rules have been part of the legislative initiative after the Germanwings disaster.
A glance at the proposal reveals that while random alcohol testing is to become mandatory, drug testing will not. However, the proposal leaves an open door to Member States if they want to do drug testing in the future.
This requirement is reflected at CAT.GEN.MPA.100 (c)(1) of the EASA Air Operations Regulation. In addition, AMC3 ORO.MLR.100 provides that an AOC holder ought to include guidance to crew members concerning health, including material dealing with alcohol and other intoxicating liquids, narcotics and drugs.
All AOC holders should have a drug and alcohol policy as part of their SMS which should include the following elements:
- training and education programme
- briefing on self-awareness and facilitation of self-referral for help with an alcohol or drug problem.
- procedures for monitoring the efficacy of the alcohol and drugs policy; this is likely to include a drug and alcohol testing programme (‘with cause’, post incident/accident and random). AOC holders should review their employment contracts to ensure they permit testing.
- monitoring and support for return to work after rehabilitation for an alcohol or drug problem.
From Demo Aviation we can support airlines for achieving this new regulation requirement.