DGCA Starts Safety Audit of Airlines Ahead of ICAO Check
New Delhi: As the audit of India’s aviation sector by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) nears, the local regulator has launched an evaluation of the country’s airlines for their compliance with safety standards.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) audit is seen as part of the local body’s preparation for the international audit, which comes in the backdrop of increased instan- ces of safety violation in Indian skies. Adverse findings during the evaluation by ICAO, a UN watchdog, could result in foreign aviation regulators imposing sanctions on India.
“The airline audit will check them (carriers) on almost all parameters,” said an official in the know, who did not want to be named.
Airlines confirmed the development. “These audits by DGCA cannot be surprise audits and they need to inform us and seek dates for the audit,” said an executive at an airline. “Our audit is likely to happen in September.”
The number of safety violations reported in Indian skies increased by more than half in 2016 compared with the previous year. According to DGCA data, it took 422 enforcement actions last year, compared with 275 in 2015. And, this at a time when India has become the fastest growing aviation market, registering more than 20% growth in passenger traffic and capacity in each of the past two years.