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Civil Aviation Accident and Incident Investigations

No matter what the transport mode is, accidents always reduce the public’s confidence in the safety of the transport system. Accidents can lead to injury or death and can cause environmental and economic damage. Independent investigations into causes of accidents and incidents, and the resulting recommendations, help to prevent these events from re-occurring and thus play an important role in improving transport safety.

Recognising the importance of accident investigation in civil aviation, in 1980 the EU adopted a Directive 80/1266/EEC on cooperation and mutual assistance between the Member States in the field of air accident investigation. The Directive of 1980 was subsequently replaced by Directive 94/56/EC, which transposed into the EU legislation a number of principles contained in Annex 13 of the Chicago Convention. This significantly contributed to the harmonisation of civil aviation accident investigation in the EU.

In 2010, the European Commission conducted a comprehensive review of EU legislation on civil aviation accident and incident investigations. This review resulted in the adoption of Regulation (EU) No 996/2010 , which currently provides the legal framework for the conduct of civil aviation accident and incident investigations in the EU.

Following the entry into force of Regulation (EU) No 996/2010, civil aviation safety investigation authorities of EU Member States gathered on 19 January 2011 in Brussels to establish the "European Network of Civil Aviation Safety Investigation Authorities" (ENCASIA) .

Additionally, a European Central Repository of Safety Recommendations and their responses has been created, access to which is regulated by Commission Decision 2012/780/EU

Legislation

Regulation on civil aviation accident and incident investigations

Regulation (EU) No 996/2010 of 20 October 2010 on the investigation and prevention of accidents and incidents in civil aviation

Report on the implementation of Regulation (EU) No 996/2010 pdf - 133 KB [133 KB] (Annex pdf - 583 KB [583 KB] )

Process towards the adoption of Regulation (EU) No 996/2010

Proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on investigation and prevention of accidents and incidents in civil aviation [COM (2009) 611] pdf - 142 KB [142 KB] Deutsch (de) français (fr)

Regulatory Impact Assessment pdf - 822 KB [822 KB]

Summary Impact Assessment pdf - 90 KB [90 KB] Deutsch (de) français (fr)

Presentation of the Commission's proposal pdf - 3 MB [3 MB]

Citizens' Summary pdf - 21 KB [21 KB] Deutsch (de) français (fr)

Flying safer: Commission proposes new rules for better investigation of civil aviation accidents [IP/09/1612, 29/10/2009]