Latest update 16/02/2017: please see below for more details.
Ground handling covers all the activities related to aviation on the ground carried out for airlines, including check-in and transport of passengers, baggage handling, refuelling of the airplane, catering, preparation and arrival of the flight including cleaning, de-icing, positioning of the aircraft, freight and mail processing etc.
In a bid to improve the quality and efficiency of ground handling services at airports, the commission had previously introduced an Airports Package. Measures included increasing the minimum choice of ground-handlers available to airlines at large airports for key ground handling services which are currently restricted for things such as baggage handling, ramp handling, refuelling and oil, freight and mail services from two to three. However the newly elected commission at the end of 2014 decided to withdraw the Ground Handling Regulation, for which the Commission says no agreements are in sight, from their 2015 work programme .
ERA continues to monitor any regulatory proposals regarding ground handling.
The Directorate regularly attends the UK’s Ground Handling Operations Safety Team (GHOST), a multi-disciplined group set up by the UK Civil Aviation Authority and industry stakeholders to mitigate the safety risks from ground handling along with the support of numerous activities. The group agrees approaches which could be in the form of a new high profile initiative or project, and provides clarity or enhanced guidance to an existing regulation, policy or procedure.
Latest update 16/02/2017: The 37th meeting of GHOST was held at Aviation House, Gatwick Airport on 9 February 2017, which ERA attended. The meeting covered numerous ground handling issues, including an update on the application of ground power to live aircraft, state safety partnerships, ground handling regulation and a safety ‘swap shop’. ERA's summary of the meeting is available to view via the Downloads section.
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