Transport Canada – Civil Aviation (TCCA) has issued a Civil Aviation Safety Alerts (CASA) calling attention to the importance of inspecting ELTs and how they are installed. This comes after incidents where ELTs failed due to either faulty equipment or improper installation.

The CASA cites the case of a Cessna Caravan that went down in the Northwest Territories in 2011 whose ELT did not activate due to incorrect installation. TCCA subsequently published an article in an Aviation Safety Letter discussing the issue. The CASA also cites a more recent case (2019) involving a crashed Robinson R44 helicopter where a faulty switch led to the ELT being inadvertently switched to the OFF position. The latter incident led to the Transportation Safety Board issuing an Air Safety Advisory.

The CASA recommends that during an aircraft’s annual inspection the ELT be inspected for proper installation, using the manufacturer’s recommendations or, if unavailable, applicable Instructions for Continued Airworthiness. The inspection must include the ELT toggle switch.

TCCA also requests that they be informed of any anomalies discovered that could compromise safety via the Service Difficulty Reporting System.

Further information on this alert can be found here.

Image credit: TSB