Symposium highlights urgent need to assess runway conditions

ACI and ICAO’s Global Reporting Format is key to greater airfield safety, efficiency and capacity, as air traffic continues to rise.

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As the increase in traffic calls for greater airfield efficiency and capacity, Airports Council International (ACI) World has emphasised the importance of implementing the new International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Global Reporting Format (GRF), a new methodology for assessing and reporting runway surface conditions.

The GRF, which will be applicable in November 2020, was published in 2016 in an amendment to PANS-Aerodromes and consequential amendments to several Annexes. It is widely considered as a step forward for safety.

It follows amendment to Volume 1 of ICAO Annex 14 – Aerodromes, which came into effect on the 8 November 2018. It provides for a safe reduction in minimum airfield dimensions and offers the opportunity to boost efficiency and make improvements to capacity.

Addressing aviation stakeholders at the joint ICAO/ACI Symposium on Implementation of the New Global Reporting Format for Runway Surface Condition in Montreal, Canada, ACI World Director General Angela Gittens, emphasised the aim of the GRF and consequential benefits to the safety of aviation.

Gittens said: “The Global Reporting Format seeks to ensure a harmonised assessment and reporting of runway surface conditions and a correspondingly improved flight crew assessment of take-off and landing procedures. This will also have great potential to improve safety at airports around the world by reducing runway excursions. At the same time, accurate and timely runway condition information adjusted to the operational need and promulgated/disseminated according to defined terminology and procedures will have a positive impact on the efficiency of the air transportation system. The joint ICAO/ACI Symposium has been tailored to improve awareness of the new methodology, review implementation challenges and opportunities, and to facilitate an exchange of best practices. ACI continues to encourage governments and regulators around the world to help airports and their communities reap the benefit of these changes by implementing the new standards.”

As part of ACI’s commitment to support its members with the implementation, ACI joined forces with ICAO to develop a course specifically designed to assist airport operators to understand and meet the new ICAO requirements for runway surface condition assessment and reporting.

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