Dear Members,

The new year still holds major challenges for our association. Covid keeps threatening our industry and influencing our daily work, both in cockpits and offices and in our private lives.

Employers also seem to want to take every opportunity to benefit from the crisis and force concessions from workers, sometimes by very "unfriendly" means. It is therefore important for us as an association to support our representatives in the workers' bodies as strongly as possible. Examples of this are the provision of time off for trade union activities or legal advice and strategic support from external experts.

However, all this only really helps us as workers' representatives if the employers have to assume that we have the broad support of the workers in the companies!

Kristian Wagner
Board Member

We as representatives of VC are aware that membership in our union is not something to take for granted. Instead, it must be tangible again and again for our members. The collective bargaining area is certainly the most visible, but by far not the only one. Especially when it comes to flight safety, VC is a powerful voice that is being heard by relevant actors in Europe - we are very present and well recognised in Berlin and Brussels.

But it is also the responsibility of every individual, whether a member or not, to get involved and show solidarity, beyond their own company boundaries. We are intensifying efforts within VC to organise across the various councils, boards and commissions and we are seeing increasing successes resulting from this. In the end, only united representation can effectively counter the employers' "divide and rule".

There are still some hurdles to overcome to get back into calmer air, but I am convinced that together we will be able to do it!

Carolin Bach re-elected as Chair of the Advisory Council

VC President Stefan Herth congratulates Carolin Bach on her re-election as Chair of the Advisory Council (both are vaccinated and tested).

At the constitutive meeting of the new Advisory Council on 20 January, Carolin Bach was unanimously confirmed as chairperson. Hendrik J├Ąger, Jens Kreuzer, Robin Roth and Ekkehard Gehm were elected as vice-chairs.

The Advisory Council represents the interests of the members within the VC. The term of office is three years, the new Council is thus elected for the period from 2022 to 2024.

New VC Podcast Episode: Safety II

In our profession, dealing with flight safety is part of everyday life. But not everyone can define the term right away. Max Scheck, head of the UAS+ working group and member of the QUAT working group, is Leila Belaasri's guest on this topic in the new VC Podcast episode. He systematically explains what Safety II is and talks about the differences as well as advantages and disadvantages of the approaches Safety I and Safety II.

As an expert in flight safety, Max defines the term "safety" as follows: In a system, all actors with a task have the overview, the necessary information and the necessary competences in the area relevant to them in order to be able to act to the best of their knowledge and belief, and they are aware of the risks and potential effects of their actions.

Max will tell you much more on Safety II if you take a listen: click here (in German).

And if you prefer reading, you can find Max's series of articles on Safety I and II here on the VC Info website (in German).

New READ YOU 5 Episode: CPDLC

Controller Pilot Data Link Communication (CPDLC) enables the exchange of flight safety-related messages between air traffic control and aircraft. But why is this not available everywhere? Why can some aircraft only register with some sectors and what does this have to do with a whitelist? What needs to be considered when using it and how does it work in the cockpit and at the controller working position?

In this episode of the READ YOU 5 podcast, Thorsten Raue from the German air traffic control union GDF and Felix Gottwald from our ATS working group talk about these questions and much more.

Click here to listen to the Podcast (in German).

Activation of 5G Transmitters in the US / Implications for B787 Performance

Mobile Radio Antennas

At the same time as the activation of 5G transmitters started last week, US authorities published a four-digit number of NOTAMs restricting the use of bad weather approaches due to the lack of reliability of radio altimeters.

A major problem is the large number of different radio altimeter models currently in use that have been certified to a standard that dates back to the early days of jet aviation. Both manufacturers and certification authorities are currently struggling to describe the exact impact on aircraft system behaviour.

On 14 January, the FAA published Continued Airworthiness Notification 2022-01 (CAN 2022-01), which indicates that the B787 may fail to extend ground spoilers and activate reverse thrust. This has a corresponding effect on the required landing distance.

Just two days later, the FAA cleared a large number of Airbus and Boeing models, which can now again perform automatic landings at 48 airports that previously would have been completely out of service in bad weather conditions. The list of cleared radio altimeters, aircraft types and approaches has been steadily expanding over the past week. Clearances required for flight preparation are to be provided by the respective operator. Currently, changes and additions to this list may occur on a daily basis.

In order to stay informed about the current status of the effects of 5G systems, it is recommended to visit the FAA information website which provides clear and daily updated information about new regulations. You can also find an overview of the differences between the mobile radio standards in the USA and Europe.


FAQ on PBN Airspace Usage Requirements

The aim of a Single European Sky is leading to increased transitioning towards a performance-based navigation (PBN) environment thanks to common airspace usage requirements.

These requirements stipulate the implementation of ATS routes and approach procedures based on a set of ICAO PBN navigation specifications. EASA has published FAQs on PBN Airspace Usage Requirements. The agency will further develop these FAQs as additional aspects of interest to stakeholders are identified.

Click here for the FAQs.

General Aviation Survey

In order to increase the overall safety of aviation in Europe, data and facts are needed on all airspace users from small drones up to A380s. This ultimately benefits all of us who travel through the air. EASA, together with the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) and the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), conducts an annual survey on general aviation in order to obtain data in this area. If you fly GA aircraft yourself or know someone who does, please take part in the survey or forward it to them.

The survey can be found here.

European Plan for Aviation Safety 2022-2026 published

EASA has published the 11th edition of the European Plan for Aviation Safety (EPAS). It identifies strategic priorities and key risks for the European aviation system and defines mitigation actions. Highlights of the EPAS 2022-2026 include:

  • Inclusion of pandemic-related safety issues
  • 19 new research projects, including remote flight instruction, machine learning in certification, and electric and hybrid propulsion technologies
  • Plans to create a European Digital Pilot Licence System
  • Further promotion of a "Drone Eco System" in Europe.

To the EPAS 2022-2026

News from Associations, Organisations and Regulators

IFALPA - Covid Information

  • IFALPA has compiled answers to frequently asked questions by pilots about Covid vaccination in an FAQ: COVID-19 Vaccines
  • Recommendations for working in the cockpit considering the Covid situation can be found here: COVID-19 Guidance for Crews
  • The use of masks in the cockpit is controversial, IFALPA highlights the different aspects in a safety bulletin: Use of Masks in the Cockpit

OPS Group - Vaccination, Ukraine-Russia Conflict, North Atlantic

We continuously strive to improve our newsletter and welcome your feedback. Please send comments and suggestions to or use the reply function of your mail programme. To stay up to date with the latest news, follow us on: