Industry Calls for Stronger Penalties on Illegal Charter

The British Business and General Aviation Association (BBGA) is calling for legal changes to strengthen deterrents for illegal charter and boost enforcement. “Fines are pointless and they are not being enforced,” aviation attorney and BBGA Chair Aoife O’Sullivan said today at the Air Charter Expo conference at Biggin Hill Airport. “We need a change in the law.”

Conference panelists—including EBAA chief operations officer Robert Baltus and NATA v-p of aircraft management, charter services, and MROs Ryan Waguespack—acknowledged that regulatory agencies generally have inadequate resources to police illegal charter. They indicated that abuses are increasing, partly facilitated by online charter platforms and abuses of dry-lease arrangements.

According to O’Sullivan, the industry should focus efforts on better informing charter end users of the liabilities they could face in the event of an accident. James Moreton from insurance broker Hayward Aviation added that end users also need to be more aware that illegal charters can invalidate insurance coverage. He acknowledged that insurance companies could do more to raise awareness about the resulting liability issues.

EBAA is in the process of setting up a platform to make it easier for legitimate businesses to report cases of illegal charter.

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Please note all Member News Releases/Articles are the opinions of the member submitting the article and not necessarily those of BBGA.

‘We are a small family owned and run business that the introduction of new measures by BF would have caused severe financial hardship.  I was recommended to ask BBGA for advice which they instantly gave even though we were not members.  They attended various meetings by my side, took the situation to a higher level within the Government department and helped me achieve a satisfactory outcome.  I wasn’t pressured to become a member but what became apparent was their genuine desire to help resolve aviation issues for the better of the community.  This association covers almost every aspect of the industry, has representation on the majority of decision making panels and achieves results by either diluting possible harmful legislation or stopping it altogether.  Its members receive updates in real time often leaving other associations to ‘cut and paste’ BBGA releases some time later.’
Penny Stephens – Director
Inflite The Jet Centre
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