Mobility and Transport


EU Ramp Inspections Programme

EU Ramp Inspections Programme

The EU Ramp Inspections Programme is a European Union Programme that concerns the performance of ramp inspections on aircraft used either by third country operators (Safety Assessment of Foreign Aircraft - SAFA) or by operators under the regulatory oversight of another EU Member State (Safety Assessment of Community Aircraft- SACA). The Programme is regulated by Regulation (EU) No 965/2012 , which entered into force on 28 October 2012, and it provides for the inspection of aircraft for compliance with the applicable requirements.

The EU Ramp Inspections Programme has replaced the EU SAFA Programme established by Directive 2004/36/EC on the safety of third-country aircraft using Community airports (the so-called 'SAFA Directive'), published on 30 April 2004, creating a legal obligation upon EU Member States to perform ramp inspections upon third country aircraft landing at their airports. This was the basic legal instrument underpinning what is known as the EC SAFA programme until 2012. The new regulation - Regulation (EU) No 965/2012 - has thus extended the SAFA oversight framework to EU operators.

The Ramp Inspections programme has two tiers:

  • SAFA ramp inspections (for third country operators – checked against ICAO standards);
  • SACA ramp inspections (for EU operators – checked against EU standards).

For further details regarding the operational and technical aspects of the EU Ramp Inspections Programme, please consult the EASA website