Regulatory Investigations Unit Annual Report

The Civil Aviation Authority’s Regulatory Investigations Unit (RIU) completes an annual report of regulatory activities.

The purpose of the report is to provide transparency around regulatory actions taken in the public interest.

The RIU conducts regulatory investigations on behalf of the CAA operational units to identify system failures. The investigations are mainly of three types:

  • Aviation-related concern (ARC) investigations – a review of safety and security information obtained from a variety of sources to determine the nature and extent of risks that exist within the aviation environment, for the purpose of making a recommendation on what action, if any, to take;
  • Section 15A investigations – to determine the nature and extent of any safety or security risk involving a document holder, and establish if action is required to mitigate or remove the risk to prevent future harm; and
  • Enforcement investigations – to establish and document relevant facts, reach appropriate conclusions based on the available evidence, and recommend a suitable response to the decision maker responsible for determining what, if any, action should be taken in the public interest, to enforce the legislation.

In the 2017 financial year, the CAA commenced 38 regulatory enforcement investigations and assisted the operational units with 147 ARC investigations (out of a total of 241 recorded ARCs) and six section 15A investigations. None of the prosecutions in 2016-2017 were commenced as a result of sector self-reporting.

During the 2016-17 period, the RIU observed an increase in the number of remotely piloted aircraft or “drone” incidents being referred for enforcement investigation. This is reflected in the greater number of infringement notices issued for non compliance with Part 101 of the Civil Aviation Rules.


Regulatory Investigations Unit Annual Report 2017 (amended)(PDF 387 KB)