WRITTEN QUESTION E-2953/01 by Charles Tannock (PPE-DE) to the Commission. Air safety.
OJ C 134E , 6.6.2002, p. 158–159 (ES, DA, DE, EL, EN, FR, IT, NL, PT, FI, SV)
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WRITTEN QUESTION E-2953/01
by Charles Tannock (PPE-DE) to the Commission
(25 October 2001)
Subject: Air safety
Bearing in mind the appalling events of September 11 and the recent decision of the International Civil Aviation Authority at its meeting in Montreal to revise the Chicago Convention to include common preventive measures against new terrorist threats following a decision to press for such a change at the EU Transport Ministers' meeting of 14 September, and given that the black box flight recorders of the aeroplanes which crashed into the World Trade Centre may not have survived the inferno and that the black box on the Russian aeroplane which exploded (for whatever reason) over the Black Sea last week is unlikely ever to be recovered because of the depth at which it is likely to be situated, hampering the investigations, will the Commission now press for simultaneous cockpit recordings to be transferred to the ground even if access to the tapes is limited to governments and the Civil Aviation Authorities and they are routinely erased in the event of a safe landing?
Answer given by Mrs de Palacio on behalf of the Commission
(7 December 2001)
The question of the transmission of data from flight recorders to ground stations has been examined on a number of occasions in the past. The main obstacles were of a technical and economic nature.
As regards the technical obstacles, it is true that data transmission has developed to an extent where it would now be possible to consider the transfer of data from aircraft to the ground.
However, the fairly high costs associated with aspects such as the transmission techniques to be used, the geographical area to be covered, the updating rate etc. should be examined in relation to the added value of this new technique, whereas usable recordings are frequently recovered after accidents.
Added to these questions are possible legal problems linked to the possession of such data, as transmissions could be intercepted.
For these reasons, the introduction of a system of direct transmission of data cannot be envisaged at present without a prior analysis of all these implications. The Commission does not therefore intend to include such a measure among its proposals on civil aviation safety.