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Aircraft and Shipping: Safety

Volume 487: debated on Tuesday 3 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many safety inspections have been carried out on (a) aircraft at airports and (b) ships in port in each of the last 12 months. (252444)

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) carried out 594 inspections of foreign aircraft at UK airports in 2008. These inspections are carried out on behalf of the Department for Transport and form part of the European Safety Assessment of Foreign Aircraft programme. The number of inspections conducted each month was:

Number of SAFA inspections January to December 2008

January

28

February

71

March

10

April

55

May

80

June

53

July

68

August

56

September

44

October

74

November

36

December

19

Total

594

The CAA's Airworthiness Division also carried out approximately 900 safety inspections on UK registered aircraft during 2008. These inspections were carried out at maintenance organisations as well as at airports and formed part of a pre-planned monitoring programme that is applied to each UK aircraft owner or operator. The inspections varied in depth and scope between a simple ‘in service’ ramp inspection through to a more in depth inspection during maintenance.

In addition, the CAA's Flight Operations Division has a system of planned audits of UK commercial operators which includes inspections of aeroplanes at airports. There were approximately 129 such inspections evenly spread throughout 2008. A further 20 inspections were specifically conducted on UK cargo aircraft.

Details of these inspections are not recorded centrally and therefore providing either an exact number of inspections or the months in which they took place would incur disproportionate cost.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency carries out inspections to check safety standards and living conditions on UK and dependent territory ships, as well as port state control inspections for foreign ships visiting UK ports. Over the last 12 months we have carried out the following number of targeted inspections and port state control inspections.

2008

Number of targeted inspections on UK and dependent territory Ships (inspected in the UK)

Port state control inspections for foreign ships visiting UK ports

January

36

174

February

15

172

March

22

134

April

19

153

May

19

132

June

26

142

July

16

112

August

19

134

September

18

175

October

17

182

November

11

149

December

15

161

Total

233

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