Operations resources


Non-controlled aerodromes

Radio unserviceability

Flight with an unserviceable radio CAAP 166

At non-controlled aerodromes where the carriage of radio is required, continuation  of a ‘no radio’ arrival or departure is permitted in certain circumstances (CAR 166E).

If a radio failure occurs either en route to, or in the circuit of, the aerodrome then you may continue to land at that aerodrome provided:

  • the aircraft’s landing lights, anti-collision lights and transponder are turned on,  if equipped
  • the pilot uses the overfly procedure for joining the traffic circuit on arrival.                                                                                    See Operations—Non-controlled aerodromes—Recommended circuit join.

A pilot may depart the aerodrome with an unserviceable aircraft radio and fly to another aerodrome for repairs, provided that the aircraft, where equipped, displays its landing and anti-collision lights, and has its transponder turned on.

A pilot should avoid planning to arrive at, or depart from, an aerodrome for radio repairs during the known hours of scheduled RPT operations. For aerodromes where there is a UNICOM or CA/GRS, pilots should (by non-radio means where possible) make contact and advise their intentions before operations.

Non radio-qualified pilot or non radio-equipped aircraft CAAP 166

In exceptional circumstances, the regulations make provision for a pilot who is not qualified to use an aircraft radio, or where the aircraft is not equipped with a radio, to operate in the vicinity of a non-controlled certified, military or designated aerodrome.

The non-radio aircraft must be operated:

  • VMC by day
  • to arrive or depart under the escort of another aircraft that is radio-equipped and flown by a radio qualified pilot. This will allow the escorting pilot to make radio calls on behalf of both aircraft. The radio equipped aircraft should be manoeuvred to keep the non-radio aircraft at a safe distance (CAR 163) and in sight at all times in order to accurately report its position.

Back to top
New rules come into effect from 2 December 2021 that cover the general operating and flight rules. We are currently updating this guide to reflect the new rules. A new version will be available to download from 2 December.
This is default text for notification bar