21 Dec 2020

The Minister of Transport has signed an updated Civil Aviation Rule which will improve aviation safety in New Zealand’s controlled airspace.

Acting Director of Civil Aviation Shelley Turner said the rule, signed by Minister of Transport Hon Michael Wood on 13 December, requires all aircraft flying in controlled airspace to be equipped with ADS-B OUT by 31 December 2022.

“The signing of this rule and confirmation of the 31 December 2022 implementation date is an important step for modernising New Zealand’s air traffic management system,” Ms Turner said.

The one significant change between the final version of the rule signed by the Minister and the initial proposal is the extension of the implementation date by one year.

“COVID-19 has had significant financial implications for New Zealand’s aviation sector, and we wanted to give operators a reasonable amount of time to be able to equip with ADS-B OUT before it is mandatory in controlled airspace, so the mandate has been extended out to 31 December 2022”, she said.

The ADS-B grant scheme is still available to support equipage and is one of the most substantial ADS-B schemes in the world, providing assistance for equipping with ADS-B OUT and ADS-B IN.

Aircraft owners should equip with ADS-B OUT as soon as they can to avoid bottlenecks in avionics workshops as we get closer to the 31 December 2022 implementation date.  Many workshops are reporting that they are incredibly busy currently, so despite the one year extension, are advising booking an installation slot as soon as possible.

See here for the full media release and link to the final rule, and here to hear NSS Director Steve Smyth talk about the update