Engine ground operations
Starting and running of engines CAR 230, CAO 20.9 (5)
A person must not start, or permit the starting, of an aircraft engine to be run unless the engine is started or run when the control seat is occupied by an approved person or by a person who may fly the aircraft. This may include a pilot qualified to fly, or maintenance personnel qualified to work on, that type of aircraft. In any case, the person starting or taxiing the aircraft must have sufficient knowledge of the aircraft’s controls and systems to ensure the starting or running does not endanger any person or damage the aircraft (CAR 230 (3)).
For taxiing the person must be qualified under CASR Part 61 or Part 64.
The pilot in command—or in his absence any other person—responsible for starting or ground operation of an aircraft shall ensure that passengers are able to evacuate to safety from the aircraft. This is achieved by the following:
- for land aircraft—ensure that passenger loading equipment that will permit rapid evacuation of passengers and crew is kept immediately available during the starting of engines
- for seaplanes—ensure that water transport of a capacity sufficient to enable rapid evacuation of passengers and crew is immediately available during the starting of engines.
Where any fuel or other flammable material is spilled within 15 m (50 ft) of an aircraft, the aircraft engines shall not be started or operated until the fire hazard has been removed.
An aircraft engine shall not be started or operated:
- within 5 m (17 ft) of any sealed building
- within 8 m (25 ft) of other aircraft
- within 15 m (50 ft) of any exposed public area
- within 8 m (25 ft) of any unsealed building in the case of an aircraft with a maximum take-off weight not exceeding 5700 kg (12,566 lb).
Manipulation of propeller CAR 231
Aside from CAR 225 and CAR 230, the pilot in command of an aircraft which requires an operating crew of only one pilot may manipulate the propeller of the aircraft for the purposes of starting the aircraft if:
- assistance is not readily available for that purpose
- adequate provision is made to prevent the aircraft moving forward
- no one is on board the aircraft.
A person who is the holder of the certificate of registration for, or the operator, hirer or pilot in command of an Australian aircraft must not permit a person to manipulate the propeller of the aircraft to start the engine unless the first-mentioned person is satisfied that the person who is to manipulate the propeller knows the correct starting procedures for the aircraft and can manipulate the propeller safely.
Aircraft not to be taxied except by pilot CAR 229, CASR 64.045
It is an offence to taxi an aircraft if you are not qualified to do so. A person who is qualified to taxi an aircraft is one who is authorised under CASR Part 61 and Subpart 64.C. A person qualified to taxi an aircraft may include a holder of a pilot licence that is endorsed for that aircraft type, or a person approved by CASA to taxi the aircraft in accordance with agreed terms and conditions.
Pilots at controls CAR 225
The pilot in command must ensure that one pilot is at the controls of an aircraft from the time at which the engine or engines is, or are, started before a flight until the engine or engines is, or are, stopped after the termination of a flight.
When two or more pilots are required to be on board an aircraft, the pilot in command must ensure that two pilots remain at the controls at all times when the aircraft is taking off, landing and during turbulent conditions.