Blog posts tagged in ICAO

Here we consider a broad overview of EASA regulations, focusing on the European Plan for Aviation Safety (EPAS) main objectives, priorities, and how they shape quality assurance efforts within the aviation sector.

EASA Regulations Overview

EASA regulations are comprehensive, covering all facets of aviation safety and enabling the demonstration of compliance with the relevant ICAO Standard and recommended practices. These regulations are divided into several annexes, referred to as "Parts," each addressing different areas of aviation:

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the typical terms and abbreviations compliant with ICAO Document 9640 and SAE AS6285E

Abbreviations and Terms

Active frost: Condition when frost is forming. Active frost occurs when

(1) the aircraft surface temperature is at or below the frost point, or

(2) there is water in liquid form (e.g., dew) on the aircraft surface and the surface falls to/or below 0 °C (frozen dew).

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers both the Legal Framework and applicable Security Regulations

Introduction - Legal Framework and Security Regulations

The legal framework and security regulations governing civil aviation play a crucial role in maintaining safe and secure skies.

  • • These regulations are designed to address the myriad challenges posed by modern threats to aviation, including terrorism, cyber-attacks, and other forms of unlawful interference.
  • • A robust legal framework is essential for setting standards, guiding airport and airline security measures, and facilitating international cooperation.

Key Components of the Legal Framework - International Conventions and Agreements:

  • • Chicago Convention (1944): Establishes the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and sets basic principles for international air navigation and safety.
  • • Tokyo Convention (1963): Addresses offences and certain other acts occurring on board aircraft.
  • • Hague Convention (1970): Focuses on the suppression of unlawful seizure of aircraft, also known as hijacking.
  • • Montreal Convention (1971): Aims to combat unlawful acts of aviation terrorism, including sabotage of aircraft and international airports.

National Legislation:

  • • Countries implement their aviation security legislation, regulations, and guidelines based on the standards and recommended practices (SARPs) provided by ICAO.
  • • These laws are tailored to address specific national security concerns while aligning with international standards.


  • • Evolving Threats:

 - The dynamic nature of threats, especially with advancements in technology and methods used by malicious actors, poses a continuous challenge to existing legal frameworks and regulations.

  • • International Consistency:

 - Ensuring consistency in the implementation of international standards across different jurisdictions can be challenging due to varying national priorities, legal systems, and capabilities.

  • • Technology Integration:

 - Keeping regulations up-to-date with rapid technological advancements in aviation and security systems requires continuous review and adaptation of legal frameworks.

  • • Insider Threats:

 - Addressing threats from within the aviation industry, such as those posed by radicalized staff or corrupt employees, requires laws and regulations that encompass comprehensive vetting, continuous monitoring, and access control measures.

  • • Privacy Concerns:

 - Implementing security measures, especially those involving surveillance and data collection (e.g., biometrics and passenger data sharing), raises privacy and data protection concerns that must be balanced with security needs.

  • • Maintaining Legal Compliance:

 - Laws and regulations should be regularly reviewed and updated to remain relevant and effective against the evolving threat landscape.

 - This includes adopting new technologies and methodologies in security practices.

  • • International Cooperation and Harmonization:

 - Stakeholders should work together through international bodies like ICAO to ensure harmonization of aviation security standards.

 - Sharing best practices, intelligence, and security data can enhance global aviation security.

 - Engaging a wide range of stakeholders, including airlines, airports, technology providers, and law enforcement agencies, in the development and review of regulations ensures that policies are practical, effective, and comprehensive.

  • • Training and Capacity Building:

 - Investing in the training of aviation security personnel and the building of institutional capacities ensures that regulations are effectively implemented and enforced.

Next Steps

Sofema Aviation Services (SAS) and Sofema Online (SOL) provide EASA Compliant Regulatory and Vocational Training. Please see the website or email

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the regulatory obligations to comply with EASA regulations related to De-Icing & Anti -Icing requirements.

Reference Documents

>> EASA_SIB_2017-11_1 Global Aircraft De-icing Standards

>> EASA_SIB_2018-12_1 Post De-icing/Anti-icing Checks

>> SAE AS6285 ‘Aircraft Ground Deicing/Anti-Icing Processes’ and ARP6257 ‘Aircraft Ground De/Anti-Icing Communication Phraseology for Flight and Ground Crews’.

>> SAE AS6286 ‘Training and Qualification Program for Deicing/Anti-icing of Aircraft on the Ground’, complemented by subdocuments AS6286/1, AS6286/2, AS6286/3, AS6286/4, AS6286/5 and AS6286/6.

>> SAE AS6332 ‘Aircraft Ground Deicing/Anti-icing Quality Management’.

>> ICAO 9640 ‘Manual of Aircraft Ground

>> Official FAA winter 2023-2024 holdover time guidelines

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the key elements of an effective Safety Audit.


Performing safety management system (SMS) audits by EASA (European Union Aviation Safety Agency) and ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) Annex 19 requirements involves a thorough assessment of an organization's safety practices, focusing on risk and performance rather than mere compliance.

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 ICAO Abbreviations and Terms Applicable to Aircraft deicing & anti-icing

Sofema Online (SOL) considers the typical terms and abbreviations compliant with ICAO Document 9640 and SAE AS6285E

Abbreviations and Terms

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the major challenges related to the need to address Cyber Security.

Aviation Cyber Security Strategy Introduction

The civil aviation sector is increasingly reliant on the availability of information and communications technology systems, as well as on the integrity and confidentiality of data.

The threat posed by possible cyber incidents to civil aviation is continuously evolving, with threat actors focusing on malicious intents, disruptions of business continuity and the theft of information for political, financial or other motivations.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the use of the ICAO 5 x 5 Matrix as a Risk Assessment Tool.


ICAO 5 x 5 Risk Assessment is a widely used risk assessment methodology in the aviation industry. It involves the assessment of the likelihood and severity of a potential risk and assigning a score to each based on a five-point scale. The scores are then multiplied to give an overall risk score.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the roles and responsibilities related to the performance of Safety Assessment of Foreign Aircraft (SAFA) & Safety Assessment of Community Aircraft (SACA)

Introduction - How are ramp inspections performed?

The Inspection is performed by Authorised inspectors who are using an International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) compliant checklist with 53 inspection items during ramp checks.

Category 2 and Category 3 findings are communicated to the responsible Aviation Authority for information and to the home base of the operator with the request to take appropriate action to prevent reoccurrence.

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Sofema Online (SOL) introduces the role, purpose and applicable regulations related to the Ramp Inspection Programmes Safety Assessment of Foreign Aircraft (SAFA) and Safety Assessment of Community Aircraft (SACA)

EU Ramp Inspection Program

>> Used by third-country operators (SAFA) or
>> Used by operators under the regulatory oversight of another EU Member State (SACA)

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Sofema Online (SOL) looks at the historical timeline of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO):


>> The Convention on International Civil Aviation, also known as the Chicago Convention, was signed on December 7, 1944, by 52 countries in Chicago, Illinois, United States.

>> The Convention established the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) as a specialized agency of the United Nations responsible for the coordination and regulation of international air travel.

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 Sofema Online (SOL) reviews the regulatory requirements driven by ED Decision 2022/011/R concerning the amendment of the AMC & GM to Commission Regulation (EU) No 1321/2014 in the context of  SMS in Part-145 and Occurrence reporting

>> Amendment of the AMC & GM to Commission Regulation (EU) No 1321/2014

  • ‘SMS in Part-145’ and ‘Occurrence reporting’


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Sofema Online (SOL)  ( identifies the appropriate DG Awareness Training for EASA Part 145 Staff and in particular Stores and Stores Inspection Staff.


For staff working in warehouses dealing with the handling of aircraft spare parts and aircraft consumables, the applicable training is the Sofema Online course - Competency Based DG Training - Personnel Responsible for Handling in a Warehouse, Load and Unload.

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Sofema Online (SOL) looks at the use of Risk-Based Oversight in support of the Aviation System

Introduction - ICAO Drivers for Risk-Based Oversight

ICAO recognizes the importance of risk-based oversight systems in aviation and has developed a set of drivers to support their implementation. These drivers are designed to help aviation authorities and operators understand the benefits of risk-based oversight and to provide guidance on how to implement such a system effectively.

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Sofema Online (SOL) takes a Risk Assessment deep dive to examine the ICAO 5x5 Risk Assessment tool.


The purpose of a risk matrix is to enable the categorization, prioritization, and benchmarking / Comparison of a data set (hazards or potential hazards).

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Sofema Online (SOL) – considers best practices and challenges related to the recovery of aircraft suffering from accidents & incidents.

Having aircraft recovery processes & procedures in place is essential for efficient airport operations, closing a runway even for a short time typically creates a significant problem with associated costs and loss of revenue for example related to aircraft diversions and flight airspace.

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Sofema Online ( considers the role and purpose of Aviation Safety Management System (SMS) - Safety Performance Indicators (SPI) within an EASA Part 21 G Organisation.

Introduction – Key Performance Indicator (KPI)

Typically measures how well your operation is doing at achieving its maintenance goals, for example reducing downtime or costs. KPIs can be used as a benchmark to understand your organisations current position as well as to facilitate the development of Key Performance goals.

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Sofema Online (SOL) looks at the process of delivering assurance within an FAA - EASA Compliant Safety Management System.

Introduction - Considering the Definition of Safety Assurance

» EASA – Safety assurance – all planned and systematic actions necessary to afford adequate confidence that a product, a service, an organisation, or a functional system achieves acceptable or tolerable safety.
» FAA – Safety assurance – Processes within the SMS that function systematically to ensure the performance and effectiveness of safety risk controls and that the organization meets or exceeds its safety objectives through the collection, analysis, and assessment of information.

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Sofema Online (SOL) considers the process to manage safety performance within the organisations Safety Management System (SMS).

Introduction – Safety Performance and Safety Performance Monitoring

Safety Performance is a balance between the safety system achievements of the organisation, and the effectiveness of the mitigations which are implemented to enable the safety achievements.

SMS General Understanding of Terms:

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Considerations by Sofema Online (SOL)


The SAFA programme started in 1996 and is focused on assessing the level of compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standards of the airlines operating at the various airports which are within the jurisdiction of the European Aviation Authorities.

» The objective is to raise the overall safety level of airlines by requiring correction and prevention of identified discrepancies with ICAO standards.

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