Helicopter Operations resources

Helicopter Operations


Low flying

Low flying CAR157

An aircraft must not fly over:

  • any city, town or populous area, at a height lower than 1000 ft or
  • any other area at a height lower than 500 ft.

The above does not apply to a helicopter flying at a designated altitude within an access lane, details of which have been published in the AIP or NOTAMs for use by helicopters arriving at or departing from a specified place. In addition, the above does not apply if:

  • through stress of weather or any other unavoidable cause it is essential that a lower height be maintained
  • the aircraft is engaged in private or aerial work operations, being operations that require low flying, and the owner or operator of the aircraft has received from CASA either a general permit for all flights, or a specific permit for the particular flight, to be made at a lower height while engaged in such operations
  • the pilot of the aircraft is engaged in flying training and flies over part of a flying training area in which low flying is authorised by CASA under CAR 141(1)
  • the pilot of the aircraft is engaged in a baulked approach procedure, or the practice of such procedure under the supervision of a flight instructor or a check pilot
  • the aircraft is flying in the course of actually taking off or landing at an aerodrome
  • the pilot of the helicopter is engaged in
    • a search
    • a rescue, or
    • dropping supplies in a search and rescue operation
  • the helicopter is
    • operated by, or for the purposes of, the Australian Federal Police or the police force of a state or territory, and
    • engaged in law enforcement operations, or
  • the pilot of the helicopter is engaged in an operation which requires the dropping of packages or other articles or substances in accordance with directions issued by CASA.

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