The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) says it has met with officials from airport authorities in Toronto and Vancouver as part of a promise to be more proactive in advancing issues on its safety Watchlist.
The issues in question involve avoiding runway incursions and runway overruns.
“Runway incursions have been on the … TSB Watchlist since 2010,” the TSB said. “Of particular concern in Canada is the number of serious runway incursions — incursions in which a collision was narrowly avoided or there was a significant potential for collision.”
NAV CANADA data show that there were 2,041 runway incursions, including 27 serious incursions, between 2011 and 2015.
Since runway overruns were first placed on the Watchlist in 2010, the TSB has investigated 16 overrun accidents, the agency said, criticizing the lack of a requirement for Canadian runways to meet International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards and recommended practices for runway-end safety areas (RESAs).
The TSB said that many Canadian airports do not meet a Transport Canada guideline calling for 150 m [492 ft] RESAs, and most of Canada’s largest airports do not meet the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) recommended practice of 300-m [984-ft] RESAs.
“As a result, the terrain beyond the end of many runways in Canada could, in the event of an accident, contribute to aircraft damage and injuries to passengers and crew,” the TSB said.
TSB Chair Kathy Fox noted that the board promised a more proactive approach to items on its current Watchlist, announced late in 2016, and that the resulting meetings with airport authorities — and with key stakeholders throughout Canada’s transportation network — are part of that initiative.