Danger looming for air cargo?
New Foca air cargo regulations to enter into effect in 2023. Regulations promulgated by the Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation (Foca, Bundesamt für Zivilluftfahrt, Bazl) don’t quite seem to have made it into people’s minds yet. On 1 January 2023 a system change will take place that will assign greater responsibility to firms transporting dangerous goods by air. Stephan Jenny, managing director of the Wil-based company Gefahrgutshop GmbH, spoke to Christian Doepgen about the impending change – and the scope for firms to react to the new legal situation.
Where’s the need for action, Mr Jenny?
The Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation (Foca) has implemented new conditions for airfreight. The carriage of dangerous goods is regulated by Icao annex 18 (including the technical instructions) and articles 16 and 16a of the Swiss air transport regulations. From 1 January 2023 on, competence-based training and assessment of hazardous goods personnel (DG CBTA) is mandatory. My impression is that firms haven’t recognised the urgency yet. Some certificates will already expire in January 2023.
What has Foca decided?
Foca has initiated a system change with effect from 1 January 2023. There will no longer be any standard training courses. The training programme now has to be put together individually for each company. The previous training providers must therefore prove their qualifications again and the responsibility for choosing their instructor correctly now lies with the companies themselves.
“The companies themselves now have to choose the right instructor.”
In addition, every company that transports dangerous goods by air must be registered with Foca. The obligation to declare their activities, which used to be passive, will therefore be transferred directly to the companies themselves in future.
To what extent must a new form of training now take place?
Employees have to get used to the new situation, because consignors will now be held more accountable. Be it in the warehouse, in packaging or in administration (obligation to register, etc.) – every firm has to schedule training for its employees. This is where a provider such as us comes into play.
“Our training programme is tailored to these innovations.”
What does your portfolio consist of?
We’ve been active in the hazardous goods field since 2009, and in airfreight specifically since 2011. In detail this means that we prepare, pack and declare dangerous goods for transport by road, rail, sea or airfreight on site on behalf of our customers. All our employees are trained hazardous goods safety advisors on the front line, and quite a few have additional training in sea or airfreight.
What do you have on offer?
We’ve developed a training programme tailored to these innovations, which is why it is presented on its own microsite (www.gefahrgut-shop.ch/iata). We coordinated our considerations with the Swiss Shippers’ Council, in order to take the needs of shipping companies into account accordingly.