COVID19 – restrictions, support, and restarting gliding information
Updated 5th January 2021
The COVID19 pandemic has resulted in restrictions and associated challenges. This webpage aims to collate and link to the relevant published detail as it becomes available.
As described in the Govt information below, please note that the Devolved Administrations have individual responsibility for public health guidance in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. It is important to ensure that gliding clubs and those participating in gliding throughout the UK follow the relevant public health guidance.
The BGA is following the Governments COVID19 guidance.
Govt websites are updated from time to time and may not always be aligned with the latest news.
The tier restriction that applies to an individual is the designated tier for their usual home address. In other words, if a persons usual home address is in a particular tier area then that tiers restrictions apply wherever the person happens to be. If the tier for the area the person is visiting is higher, the higher tier restrictions apply. For example, if a gliding club is in a higher tier than applies to a members home address, the higher tier restrictions apply to the member while they are at the club. NB: In tier 4, flight training for private pilots (i.e. training for leisure purposes) is not permitted as this is not considered a reasonable excuse for leaving home.
A helpful rule of thumb is that if public health tier restrictions allow you to travel to the airfield, flying is permitted subject to the DfT guidance for recreational GA.
The detailed guidance for gliding/flying under tiers 1-3 remains as published by the BGA and DfT, including wearing of face coverings when flying dual including instructing (detail under ‘Covid-safe club operations guidance’ below).
Covid-safe club operations guidance
The BGA is regularly engaging directly with club management teams by phone and email with support and guidance on club-related issues including grants and rates. Clubs that require specific guidance should in the first case contact the BGA office by email.
While the BGA club operations guidance provides a COVID19 risk assessed protocol for clubs based on known hazards, it may be that clubs will choose to document their local assessment of risk. Here is an example.
Safety and recency information for pilots and instructors
The following apply to BGA pilot certificates and BGA instructor ratings
CAA pilot licence and medical validity exemptions
The CAA has temporarily exempted licence holders from certain licence privilege and medical requirements. Please see this BGA news item dated 1 Oct 20.
Aircraft – essential maintenance
Covid-19 restrictions have resulted in limited access to aircraft and maintenance facilities. Under the lockdown requirements in England, people must not leave home unless they have a reasonable excuse, eg the activity is essential. Essential maintenance – that is maintenance to prevent deterioration and failure – is permissible. Public health guidance must be followed when carrying out essential maintenance work, and discretion must be exercised by individuals involved in determining what is ‘essential’.
If the information you require is unavailable, please contact the BGA office by email.