Chapter – 6.3
Airport Emergency Procedures
Any type of emergency may crop up at airport. A sudden emergency in an airport can hamper normal airport operations. Therefore, every airport must be prepared to cope with an emergency .Airport emergency plans are established so that effects of an unpredictable emergency are minimized .These plans lay down – the procedures involved for coordinating with different airport service agencies whơ take action, in the wake of an emergency
Airport Emergency Procedures
Airport emergency Planning is the process of preparing an aerodrome to cope with an emergency occurring at the aerodrome or in its vicinity.
Objective of Airport Emergency Planning
Minimize the effects of an emergency, particularly in respect of saving lives and maintaining aircraft operations
ICAO Annex 14 Chapter 9, Section 9.1, contains the Standards and Recommended Practices covering emergency planning and the testing ofplans through periodic exercises.
The Standards Laid Down by the ICAO are
occurring at an aerodrome or in its vicinity
Coordinate the response or participation of all existing agencies which, in the opinion of the appropriate authority, could of assistance in responding to an emergency.
The Airport Emergency Plan sets forth the procedures for coordination the response of:
The Airport Emergency Plan provides initial response guidance to emergencies.
An airport emergency plan is a manual that details the:
Its procedures have been framed around the objectives:
An Airport Emergency Plan shall be establishment at an airport, Commensurate with the aircraft operations and other activities conducted at the aerodrome. An Airport Emergency Plan shall provide for the coordination of the actions to be taken in an emergency occurring at an airport or in its vicinity.
Examples of emergencies are:
Need to Establish Airport Emergency Plan
Airport emergency plans and procedures are established to ensure the following:
Design of Airport Emergency Procedures
Airports emergency procedures are designed in such way that a lot practice exercise on emergency procedures is conducted regularly. Practice exercise are created after a lot of pre-planning. They provide opportunities for real world training to al agencies who are involved in airport emergency operations. The practice of Airport Emergency plan (AEP)is also mandated by ICAO. The plan shall observe Human Factor Principles to ensure optimum response by all existing agencies participating in emergency operations.
Agencies responsible On-Airport and Off-Airport Emergencies
On- Airport Emergency
Off- Airport Emergency
· Air Traffic control unity
· Rescue and fire fighting services
· Aerodrome administration
·Medical and ambulance services
·Medical and ambulance services
Contents of Airport Emergency Plan
The aerodrome emergency plan document shall include at least the following:
and the command post, for each type of emergency.
contacted in the case of particular emergency.
Emergency Operations Centre and Command Post
Emergency Operations Centre
A fixed emergency operation centre and a mobile command post shall be available for use during an emergency.
The emergency operations centre shall be:
The command post shall be a facility capable of being moved rapidly to the site of an emergency when required, and shall undertake the local coordination of those agencies responding to the emergency. A person shall be assigned to assume control of the emergency operations centre and when appropriate, another person will be assigned to the command post.
Adequate communications systems linking the command post and the emergency operations centre with each other and with the participating agencies shall be provided. The communication post and the emergency operations centre with each other and with the participating agencies shall be provided will be in accordance with the plan and consistent with the particular requirements of the aerodrome.
Rescue and Fire Fighting Service(RFFS)
The principal objective of a rescue and fire fighting service is to save lives.
Therefore, the provision of:
Rescue and fire fighting service have the maximum opportunities of saving lives. The need for extinguishing a fire following an aircraft accident or incident, or during rescue operations, is important at all times.
The most important factors bearing on effective rescue in a survivable aircraft accident are:
Rescue and fire fighting services maintain a response time not exceeding three minutes for any point of each operational runway and for any other part of the movement area. Requirements to combat building and fuel farm files, or to deal with foaming or runways , are not taken into account.
Types of Emergencies
The different types of emergencies in which an aircraft can be involved are;
Emergencies which are typically disasters are:
Let us look at the procedures to be followed in such emergencies.
“An aircraft approaching the airport is known or is suspected to have developed some defeat but the trouble is not such as would normally involve any serious difficulty in effecting a safe landing. The ATC tower notifies on R/T, Hotline, Telephone, about Local Standby to Fire Watch Tower.
Duties and Responsibilities of the ATC Tower ATC Tower takes note on the following:
Official Agency to be Notified
The ATC Tower also performs the following duties:
Cancels and notifies cancellation of Local Standby to concerned authorities, when emergency situation subsides.
The Fire Watch Tower receives the notification of local standby from the
The Fire Watch Tower:
* Duties and Responsibilities of Fire Service
The Fire Service receives the notification on Local Standby, from the Fire Watch Tower, and ensures that:
The fire service shift in charge maintains full alertness so that when the situation, demands, the local standby can be converted to full emergency.
Full Emergency:-an aircraft approaching the airport is , or is suspected to be, in such trouble that there is danger of an accident.
The procedure for handling full emergency situation is similar to Local Standby.
Hijack/Hijacking or forceful seizure of an aircraft can be explained as:
Hijack Contingency Plan
There is a separate Hijack Contingency Plan laid down at the Airport. Action must be taken as per the Plan. AEP shall be in force till the time the Hijack Contingency Plan is activated. There are “Various Committees on whose instructions the Contingency of Hijack an Airport is handled.
However as a preventive measure, the Security Control Procedures are at action in normal situations which are called Anti-Hijacking measures.
The apex decision making bodies, for handling the situation post-Hijack
Thousands of Passengers have lost their lives due to bomb explosion in mid air the airport. Bomb threat is a very serious threat to the civil aviation.
ICAO defines Bomb threat as:
A true or a false communicated threat. anonymous or otherwise, which Suggests, or infers that the safety of any person, an aircraft in flight, on the ground, or at any airport or civil aviation facility may be in danger from an explosive or other item or device.
When an item at any civil aviation facilities is suspected to be a bomb that authorities must raise a status of alert to activate bomb threat counter plan.
Prevention of Bomb Threat
Proper preventive measures must be adopted to handle a bomb threat that involves several agencies working in co-ordination with the other.
The bomb detection system at airport involves:
The Bomb threats are assessed on a Bomb Warning Assessment Form (BWAF) by the Bomb Threat Assessment Committee (BATC), and then the Bomb Threat is declared as
Depending on the declaration the actions are taken by the concerned agencies.
Handling a Bomb Threat in an Aircraft at an Airport
When an aircraft at an airport faces a bomb threat, the aircraft must be removed to an isolated parking bay.
The aircraft must be subjected to a thorough search by:
The aircraft emergencies that occur at the airport or in the vicinity of the airport for which services are required are classified as an “Aircraft accident”.
Let us look at the emergency procedures to deal with them in detail
Aircraft Accident at the Airport Duties and Responsibilities of the ATC Tower
The notification of an aircraft accident is first send by the aircraft or the Fire Station to the ATOC. The ATC then takes the following actions:
Notification given by the ATC Tower
The ATC gives the following notification:
Duties and Responsibilities of the ARO (Briefing Officer)
The ARO receives the notification of the accident by the ATC Tower. The ARO than takes the following actions:
Note: Agencies required to be involved have already been covered earlier.