RESPONSIBILITIES AND AUTHORITY OF THE COMMANDER

Airline Operator shall take all reasonable measures to ensure that all persons carried in the aeroplane obey all lawful commands given by the commander for the purpose of securing the safety of the aeroplane and of persons or property carried therein.
The Company will nominate one of the pilots to be the aeroplane commander for each flight or series of flights.

 

Responsibilities of the Commander

The commander exercises the final authority in relation to the operation of the aeroplane.

1.Be responsible for the safety of all crew members, passengers and cargo on board, as soon as he arrives on board, until he leaves the aeroplane at the end of the flight.

2.Be responsible for the operation and safety of the aeroplane from the moment the aeroplane is first ready to move for the purpose of taxiing prior to take-off until the moment it finally comes to rest at the end of the flight and the engine(s) used as primary propulsion units are shutdown.

3.Have authority to give all commands he deems necessary for the purpose of securing the safety of the aeroplane and of persons or property carried therein.

4.Have authority to disembark any person, or any part of the cargo, which, in his opinion, may represent a potential hazard to the safety of the aeroplane or its occupants.

  1. Not allow a person to be carried in the aeroplane who appears to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs to the extent that the safety of the aeroplane or its occupants is likely to be endangered.
  1. Have the right to refuse transportation of inadmissible passengers, deportees or persons in custody if their carriage poses any risk to the safety of the airplane or its occupants.

7.Ensure that all passengers are briefed on the location of emergency exits and the location and use of relevant safety and emergency equipment.

8.Ensure that all operational procedures and check lists are complied with in accordance with the Operations Manual.

9.Not permit any crew member to perform any activity during take-off, initial climb, final approach and landing except those duties required for the safe operation of the airplane.

10.Ensure that the pre-flight inspection has been carried out.

  1. The commander or the pilot to whom conduct of the flight has been delegated shall, in an emergency situation that requires immediate decision and action, take any action he considers necessary under the circumstances.

The commander shall ensure that:

  1. In the interest of safety, admission of any person other than the flight crew to the flight deck does not cause distraction and/or interfere with the flight’s operation, and
  2. All persons carried on the flight deck are made familiar with the relevant safety procedures.
  3. The final decision regarding admission to the flight deck shall be the responsibility of the commander.

 

Prior to Flight

The commander obtain and check all available aeronautical and meteorological information pertinent to his next flight including NOTAMs, SNOWTAMs, runway and conditions, temperature / pressure reports, and upper wind and aerodrome meteorological forecasts.

This information will enable the commander

  • To judge if the weather and the visibility / RVR at the aerodrome and the condition of the runway intended to be used will allow for a safe take-off and departure (with due regard to all relevant performance aspects of the OM Part B)
  • To select destination alternate and takeoff alternate aerodromes prior to flight, with due regard to the prescribed planning minima.
  • To calculate the operational flight plan, the planned amount of fuel and oil being based on the expected Operating conditions and sufficing for a safe completion of flight (whenever the flight plan is being calculated by third parties, not contracted by Airline, it is his responsibility to ensure that these requirements are met), and
  • If not already performed by ground personnel, to submit to the appropriate ATS unit a flight plan or sufficient information for the initiation of SAR action should the flight become overdue.

He conducts a crew briefing, relating information and particulars pertinent to the individual flight.

He ensures that the prescribed pre-flight checks and inspections have been or are being carried out, and decides whether to accept or not to accept the aeroplane with unserviceable items allowed by the CDL or MEL.

When preparing the flight, he shall, by examining the available documents and maintenance releases of authorized personnel, determine and certify by signing the appropriate documents that:

1.The aeroplane is airworthy

2.The aeroplane configuration is in accordance with the CDL

3.The instruments and equipment required for the flight to be conducted are available

4.The instruments and equipment are in operable condition except as provided in the MEL

5.Those parts of the operations manual which are required for the conduct of the flight are available

6.The documents, additional information and forms required to be available are on board

  1. Current maps, charts and associated documents or equivalent data are available to cover the intended operation of the aeroplane including any diversion which may reasonably be expected. He shall, upon his arrival in the aeroplane, check that the Navtech Route Manuals are updated and certify so on the Flight Plan.

8.Ground facilities and services required for the planned flight are available and adequate

9.The provisions specified in the operations manual in respect of fuel, oil and oxygen requirements, minimum safe altitudes, aerodrome operating minima and availability of alternate aerodromes, where required, are complied with for the planned flight

10.The load is properly distributed and safely secured

11.The mass of the aeroplane, at the commencement of taxiing and takeoff roll, will be such that the flight can be conducted in compliance with the OM Part B

  1. Route and aerodrome Qualification is satisfied.

Prior to taxiing, he must ensure that:

  • The ramp is clear,
  • The airplane’s external surfaces are clear of any deposit which might adversely affect its performance and/or controllability.
  • The passenger cabin and galley(s) are secured, all equipment and baggage is properly stowed, that all exit and escape paths are unobstructed and that relevant emergency equipment remains easily accessible for immediate use.
  • Each assisting means for emergency evacuation that deploys automatically is armed.
  • Each passenger occupies a seat or berth with his safety belt / harness properly secured and
  • Passengers have been appropriately briefed. Prior to take-off, he must ensure that all crew members occupy their stations as prescribed and the report “CABIN SECURE” is received.

 

In Flight

In flight, the commander continues to supervise, direct and coordinate the tasks / work of his entire crew so as to obtain a maximum of good airmanship for the conduct of the flight.

He ensures:

  • Observation of all noise abatement regulations as long as they are not detrimental to safety,
  • Precise navigation, observation of minimum altitudes,
  • Use of all available Air Traffic Services,
  • Observation of limitations, proper use and proper handling of the airplane’s systems, including strict use of checklists,
  • That abnormal or emergency situations, requiring the application of part or all of abnormal or emergency procedures, are not simulated during commercial air transportation flights (this also applies to simulation of instrument meteorological conditions by artificial means),
  • Observation and evaluation of the development of the meteorological situation, specifically forecasts for the route to be flown, for enrooted alternates and for the destination aerodrome and its alternate(s),
  • That the flight is not continued to the destination, unless the latest information available indicates that, at the expected time of arrival, the weather conditions at the destination, or at least at one of the alternate aerodromes, are at or above the applicable aerodrome operating minima,
  • That in an emergency situation immediate action is taken to keep the passengers and the aeroplane from personal damage or danger. In such cases it is permissible to deviate from rules and procedures in the interest of safety, but must submit an appropriate report for that,
  • That procedures and equipment limitations regarding flight in icing conditions are strictly adhered to, as ice buildup, especially in a suddenly deteriorating situation, may have rapid adverse effect on aeroplane performance and controllability
  • That, when the limit values for cosmic radiation are exceeded, descent is initiated as soon as practicable,
  • That the amount of usable fuel remaining suffices to proceed to an aerodrome where a safe landing can be made, with final reserve fuel remaining.
  • That the applicable provisions for preplanning the flight are met,
  • Timely corrective action(s), whenever system malfunctions or other variables impair the aeroplane’s operation,
  • That, in case of such impairment, his crew and relevant ground personnel are kept informed about the situation and his decisions,
  • That a flight data recorder is not disabled, switched off or erased, in the event of an accident or an incident,
  • That a cockpit voice recorder is not disabled or switched off unless he believes that the recorded data (which otherwise would be erased) should be preserved for investigative purposes,
  • That data on a cockpit voice recorder is not manually erased in the event of an accident or incident,
  • That, by keeping close contact with his cabin crew, a polite and efficient passenger service is being provided,
  • That all requirements concerning cabin safety are being observed and met “prior to taxiing” are also fulfilled prior to landing,
  • That, when leaving cruising level for descent, a check is carried out to ensure that the landing distance requirements can be met, taking into account runway condition and airplane configuration, and the MSA has been identified, and
  • That, prior to landing, all crew members occupy their stations and that the cabin crew reports “CABIN Secure”

 

After Flight

After flight, the commander ensures that the Flight and Aeroplane Technical Reports are completed.

He prohibits erasure of data recorded on a flight data recorder and a cockpit voice recorder in the event of an accident or incident having occurred which may be subject to mandatory reporting.

He hands over the aeroplane to the next crew or to the maintenance personnel, or parks, locks or seals and secures the aeroplane properly.

At aerodromes without handling personnel under contract to the company (e.g. after a diversionary landing) it is the commander’s responsibility to ensure that all passengers, the airplane’s load (e.g. live animals) and the aeroplane are well taken care of. He must also ensure the security of the aeroplane.

He files written occurrence reports as prescribed in OM part A Section 11, communicating also by telephone or facsimile if necessitated by the urgency of the matter.

He directs the attention of appropriate personnel to technical and operational particulars and problems encountered.

First Officer Co-pilot

The co-pilot is the commander’s deputy. He If the commander becomes incapacitated the co-pilot assumes the commander’s authority and the responsibility for the aeroplane and its crew, its passengers and load.

Therefore, it is his duty to responsibly participate in the preparation of the flight and to attentively monitor its progress in order to be able to assume this authority/responsibility at any given moment.

He cooperates, in a responsible manner, as a member of the airplane’s crew, and meticulously performs the work routinely assigned to him or delegated to him by the commander. It is his duty to:

Report to the commander any fault failure, malfunction of defect, which he believes may affect the airworthiness or safe operation of the aeroplane or aeroplane systems.

Report to the commander any incident that has endangered, or may have endangered, safety.

Make use of the company’s incident reporting scheme in accordance with Part B. In such cases, a copy of the report shall be communicated to the commander concerned.

Prior to Flight

The co-pilot shall meet the company’s qualification and requirements. If the conduct of the flight or part thereof is to be delegated to him by the commander, he must meet the requirements of Route and Aerodrome Competency Qualification.

He participates in the commander’s crew briefing, and avails himself of all relevant aeronautical (NOTAMs etc.) and meteorological information (including forecasts and runway condition reports) as well as of relevant papers documenting the airplane’s technical status and its anticipated load.

 

By delegation of the commander, the co-pilot will usually:

Calculate the take-off data and the operational flight plan and file the corresponding ATS flight plan (whenever those tasks have been delegated to others, he shall cross-check these documents before handing them over to the commander for signature),

Check that the prescribed manuals, maps, charts, documents and forms are on board and cover the airplane’s intended operation including possible crew changes until return to a home base,

Check the radio and navigation equipment for proper functioning,

Ascertain that fuel on board and fuel assumed for take-off data calculation are identical, and equal to or higher than the minimum fuel specified by the operation, flight plan.

At Stations without qualified personnel check use of the correct fuel type, and supervise the fuelling of the airplane, and ensure proper distribution of fuel.

In Flight

In flight, the co-pilot – as directed by the commander – executes the tasks and functions of either the pilot flying or the pilot not flying. He shall not perform any activities during critical phases of the flight other than those required for the safe operation of the aeroplane.

He assists the commander in the management of the flight deck work by:

Observing a well-balanced task distribution,

Systematic cooperation and exchange of information,

Monitoring the flight progress and the airplane’s systems,

Maintaining visual lookout, and

Monitoring the performance of other cockpit crew members.

Notwithstanding the overriding authority of the commander it is of the utmost importance that the co-pilot draws the attention of the commander to facts, circumstances or unfavorable variables which may impair the safety of the flight and which may not yet have been noticed by the commander.

Such facts and circumstances may be: expedience of limitations, abnormal indications, changes in meteorological conditions en-route or at alternates/destination, ambiguous ATS clearances, deficiencies in Navigation or the airplane’s handling, abnormal response of the airplane to controls input etc.

The co-pilot deals with all documents which have to be completed (e.g., operational flights plan, occurrence reports, Flight and Airplane Technical Report).

 

After Flight

After flight, the co-pilot assists the commander in/by:

  • Closing the airplane’s documentation,
  • Putting into good order, for the use of the airplane’s next flight crew, all manuals, maps and charts which form part of the flight deck library,
  • Handing over the aeroplane to its next crew or to appropriate maintenance personnel or, where this is impossible, having the aeroplane secured, and
  • Handing over the completed documentation to authorized personnel or forwarding such documents by other means.

Relief Pilot

  • The relief pilot relieves the Commander or the First Officer during their rest periods. His duties are those of the pilot he relieves.
  • When the relief pilot relieves the Commander, the final Authorityin relation to the operation of the aeroplane remains to the nominated Commander.
  • The relief pilot during take-off and landing should occupy a cockpit jump seat.
  • The relief pilot, when acting as PIC must inform the commander of any major changes and of any abnormalities that occurred during the period he was at the controls of the aeroplane.
  • The commander should be notified in case of emergency during his rest period without delay.

National Aviation Authorities & Security Regulations should always be adhered To Airline policy on admission to flight deck is:

No person, other than flight crew members assigned to a flight, shall be admitted to, or carried on, the flight deck unless the commander himself or his designated deputy is present on the flight deck.

The final decision as to the disposition of other vacant crew seats, again, rests solely with the commander.

Normally, such permission will only be granted to employees of the operator, or of other operators, or to employees of aeronautical or other authorities.

(e.g., crew seats which are not certificated for occupation by crew members during takeoff/ landing or specified other phases of flight e.g., because of emergency – evacuation problems, shall not be occupied by other persons).

The commander shall not grant permission for occupation of a vacant crew seat located at an emergency exit to any person who has be denied seating at such exit or to any other person lacking sufficient strength or dexterity to operate and open the emergency exit, to exit expeditiously, and to assist others in getting off an escape slide.

The crew member responsible for safety in the cabin shall brief a person who has been granted permission to occupy a vacant crew seat on all safety relevant aspects connected with that seat and, if it is at an emergency exit, on how to operate and open the door in an emergency (stressing, however, that the door shall be opened only after the appropriate command has been given, and the crew member assigned to that exit is not capable of performing these actions).

 

Vacant crew seats in the flight deck may be occupied by a person who is not a member of the operating flight crew or cabin crew provided that:

  1. Permitted by, and carried in accordance with instructions contained in the operation manual.
  2. The person is assessed as able to operate self help exits as required.
  3. The person has the permission of the Aircraft Commander to do so and where necessary has a valid staff ticket.
  4. A representative of the authority responsible for certification, licensing or inspection if this required for the performance of the official duties.
  5. The person is properly briefed on safety procedures and equipment and the relevant operating procedures.
  6. The Commander ensures that the person is briefed to avoid contact with and not to operate any control or switch.

Note: Multiple seat occupancy is not permitted.

error:
Scroll to Top