June 18, 2021


Regulatory Review by Sofema Aviation Services (SAS) www.sassofia.com

Introduction – Subpart E – Low Visibility Ops (LVO) SPA.LVO.100

The operator shall only conduct the following low visibility operations (LVO) when approved by the competent authority:

  • Low visibility take-off (LVTO) operation;
  • Lower than standard category I (LTS CAT I) operation;
  • Standard category II (CAT II) operation;
  • Other than standard category II (OTS CAT II) operation;
  • Standard category III (CAT III) operation;
  • Approach operation utilising enhanced vision systems (EVS) for which an operational credit is applied to reduce the runway visual range (RVR) minima by no more than one third of the published RVR.

SPA.LVO.105 LVO Approval Application

To obtain an LVO approval from the competent authority, the operator shall demonstrate compliance with the requirements of this Subpart.

SPA.LVO.110 General Operating Requirements

The operator shall only conduct LTS CAT I operations if:

  • Each aircraft concerned is certified for operations to conduct CAT II operations; and
  • The approach is flown:

o   Auto-coupled to an auto-land that needs to be approved for CAT IIIA operations; or

o   Using an approved head-up display landing system (HUDLS) to at least 150 ft above the threshold.

The operator shall only conduct CAT II, OTS CAT II or CAT III operations if:

  • Each aircraft concerned is certified for operations with a decision height (DH) below 200 ft, or no DH, and equipped in accordance with the applicable airworthiness requirements;

o   A system for recording approach and/or automatic landing success and failure is established and maintained to monitor the overall safety of the operation;

o   The DH is determined by means of a radio altimeter;

o   The flight crew consists of at least two pilots;

o   All height call-outs below 200 ft above the aerodrome threshold elevation are determined by a radio altimeter.

The operator shall only conduct approach operations utilising an EVS if:

o   The EVS is certified for the purpose of this Subpart and combines infra-red sensor image and flight information on the HUD;

o   For operations with an RVR below 550 m, the flight crew consists of at least two pilots;

o   For  operations, a natural visual reference to runway cues is attained at least at 100 ft above the aerodrome threshold elevation;

o   For approach procedure with vertical guidance (APV) and non-precision approach (NPA) operations flown with CDFA technique, a natural visual reference to runway cues is attained at least at 200 ft above the aerodrome threshold elevation and the following requirements are complied with:

  • The approach is flown using an approved vertical flight path guidance mode;
  • The approach segment from final approach fix (FAF) to runway threshold is straight and the difference between the final approach course and the runway centreline is not greater than 2°;
  • The final approach path is published and not greater than 3,7°;
  • The maximum cross-wind components established during certification of the EVS are not exceeded.

SPA.LVO.115 Aerodrome Related Requirements

The operator shall not use an aerodrome for LVOs below visibility of 800 m unless:

o   The aerodrome has been approved for such operations by the State of the aerodrome; and

o   Low visibility procedures (LVP) have been established.

    • If the operator selects an aerodrome where the term LVP is not used, the operator shall ensure that there are equivalent procedures that adhere to the requirements of LVP at the aerodrome.
    • This situation shall be clearly noted in the operations manual or procedures manual including guidance to the flight crew on how to determine that the equivalent LVP are in effect. SPA.LVO.120 Flight crew training and qualifications.

The operator shall ensure that, prior to conducting an LVO:

  • Each flight crew member:

o   Complies with the training and checking requirements prescribed in the operations manual, including flight simulation training device (FSTD) training, in operating to the limiting values of RVR/VIS (visibility) and DH specific to the operation and the aircraft type;

o   Is qualified in accordance with the standards prescribed in the operations manual;

  • The training and checking are conducted in accordance with a detailed syllabus.

SPA.LVO.125 Operating procedures

The operator shall establish procedures and instructions to be used for LVOs. These procedures and instructions shall be included in the operations manual or procedures manual and contain the duties of flight crew members during taxiing, take-off, approach, flare, landing, rollout and missed approach operations, as appropriate.

  • Prior to commencing an LVO, the pilot-in-command/commander shall be satisfied that:

o   The status of the visual and non-visual facilities is sufficient;

o   Appropriate LVPs are in force according to information received from air traffic services (ATS);

o   Flight crew members are properly qualified.

SPA.LVO.130 Minimum equipment

The operator shall include the minimum equipment that has to be serviceable at the commencement of an LVO in accordance with the aircraft flight manual (AFM) or other approved document in the operations manual or procedures manual, as applicable.

The pilot-in-command/commander shall be satisfied that the status of the aircraft and of the relevant airborne systems is appropriate for the specific operation to be conducted.

Next Steps

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(EC) Regulation 965/2012, Aerodrome, Aircraft Flight Manual, EASA, EASA Part SPA, EASA Regulation 965, Equipment, ETOPS, Flight, LVO, MNPS, PBN, Regulatory, Regulatory Requirements, RVSM, SAS blogs, Visibility Operation