Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Technical requirements and administrative procedures related to air operations

Delivered in Plenary - 9 October 2013

Mr President

The European airspace is one of the busiest in the world, and passenger safety must of course be a priority. This is especially a concern for me as an MEP for London, the home of Heathrow Airport, which last year saw nearly 70 million passengers embark on over 470 000 flights.

The Commission’s proposals to amend flight time limitations have certainly sparked interest amongst my constituents and the pilots’ union, and it is entirely natural for the public – myself included – to be concerned when it comes to flight safety. In the UK it is the Civil Aviation Authority that takes responsibility for these matters. It enjoys the trust of both government and the industry. That is the organisation which has deemed the EU recommendations to be acceptable, without significant risk to public safety.

It therefore gives me personally great confidence in supporting the Commission’s proposals today. I strongly encourage my constituents to read their interpretation carefully. The aviation industry is, by its very nature, international in scope, and we must seek to work towards common, international regulations such as the one proposed today.