Dusting off the Canadian Aeronautics Regulations (CARs)

It’s been discussed and it is finally taking form: a modernization exercise of the CARs. These regulations came into force in 1996 and have grown to be somewhat unmanageable and convoluted, with probably as many exemptions issued by TCCA as there are articles in the CARs. Spanning a five-year time frame, the review exercise team (a full-time group of 12) has already received, over the last few years, a collection of over 1000 irritants to start with.

As you would imagine, there are many goals associated with this. The ones that interest us most include maintaining or increasing safety while reducing the effort for our members to demonstrate and clearly understand compliance with existing regulations. This effort will be undertaken with the collaboration of many outside players, and we are pleased to be part of the industry group to be consulted.

Over the next few months, COPA will be reaching out to its members (through our COPA Flights) to identify issues, irritants or just plain opportunities where the CARs could be simplified, be less prescriptive and be modernized with more evidence and risk-based regulations. By getting feedback from as many members as possible, we will be able to identify themes that may occur in different parts of the CARs and that can be addressed holistically, not just in one or two parts of the regulations. It’s not an easy task. However for us, the voice of GA in the country, it is a great opportunity to be heard and to shape the regulations that will oversee our Canadian freedom to fly for many years to come. It is for you, our members, a great advantage to be heard with such a strong voice, as a group of 16,000 and not just an individual voice. More details on the program can be found on the website https://letstalktransportation.ca/lets-talk-CARs.


There has been a lot written and said around on ADS-B, confusing a lot of people and understandably so. For the GA world, there are different systems out there: one with airborne antennae (on your aircraft) aimed towards the ground, one with antennae aimed towards the sky, one with both. For now, those countries implementing ADS-B are using ground-based stations to receive and re-transmit information. Other countries which have not yet regulated ADS-B (including Canada) will probably use a mix of ground and satellites or satellites only. Only in the U.S. can two frequencies (978 MHz below FL180 or 1090 MHz anywhere) be used; the rest of the world uses only one (1090 MHz). Nav Canada , which is studying the potential use of ADS-B in Canada, is using the 1090 MHz model, pointing to satellites in the sky. With this short introduction in mind, I would invite you to read a summary of COPA’s position on the proposed ADS-B mandate in Canada, appearing later in this issue. It has been out in the public since March 6 of this year, but I felt it necessary to share it in our magazine for everyone to read. Please feel free to contact us to discuss and share your opinions: bgervais@copanational.org.