Part 115 Adventure aviation

An adventure aviation operation involves carrying passengers for hire or reward, where the purpose of the operation is for the passenger’s recreational experience of participating in the flight, or engaging in the aerial operation.

This includes hot air ballooning, gliding, microlighting, tandem hang glider and paraglider operations, tandem parachute descent, and parachute-drop aircraft operations.

Drug and Alcohol

The use of drugs, alcohol, and substances even if consumed outside the workplace, can lead to employee impairment while at work. Poor concentration, carelessness, risk-taking behaviour and errors in judgement can occur. Drug, alcohol and substance abuse not only affects work performance, but also results in higher rates of injuries, fatalities and absenteeism as well as reduced productivity.

Adventure Aviation

In adventure aviation, detection of drug, alcohol and substance use, including prescribed medications, that can cause impairment is critical to establishing safe operations for all people involved in the operation. This includes those who are involved at the staff level as pilots, tandem masters, camera men and parachute packers, to those in management and/or ownership positions such as self-employed people. Also included are those who use the services of the company or operation, the visitors.

A safe operation is the fundamental objective of the management of drug, alcohol and substance impairment, and reasonable steps should be taken to ensure that impairment does not exist.

The CAA expects that adventure aviation operators will manage drug, alcohol and substance impairment as a significant risk, and develop and implement policies and procedures that give assurance that, while performing work in key safety roles, neither themselves, their employees, contractors nor sub-contractors are impaired by drugs, alcohol or substances. The CAA expects assurances to be evidenced by data derived by tests.

Impairment detection is evidenced by the use of tests for detectable levels of drug, alcohol or other substances. Should a non-negative result be found, the situation must be considered as that of impairment existing. The immediate effect of this is that the person tested should cease work in safety critical roles until they are considered no longer impaired.

Non-negative means the initial test has indicated that there may be drugs or alcohol present. An additional laboratory test, on the same sample, is then performed to establish the result as positive or not and the level and type of substance present.

Developing a response to the potential risk is more complicated than simply stopping work, banning all drugs and alcohol from the workplace, or even suggesting employees don’t drink or use drugs in their lives beyond work. The goals of good and effective management of the issue not only identifies and deals with the immediate safety situation, but should also deal with the issue on a long term basis, when necessary, to ensure that repeat behaviour is identified and managed. A workplace policy which applies to all staff can provide the structure for effective management.

These Fact Sheets can give guidance for a successful Drug and Alcohol Programme:

Sample Policy

Please note that this policy is provided as a sample only. It does not cover all of the elements considered necessary to provide a full and comprehensive policy, but does demonstrate what a basic policy construction or layout could be, along with some elements that should be considered.

Readers will need to assess the information and material on this web site and provide additional policy commentary where they consider it necessary to do so.

A copy of the policy can be opened here:

Sample Policy

The information presented in this document is intended for general use only. It should not be viewed as a definitive guide to the law, and should be read in conjunction with the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 and associated regulations (where relevant). 



Fatigue is recognised as a major human factors hazard because it affects people’s ability to do their job safely. ICAO defines fatigue as:

A physiological state of reduced mental or physical performance capability resulting from sleep loss, extended wakefulness, circadian phase, and/or workload (mental and/or physical activity) that can impair a person’s alertness and ability to perform safety related operational duties.

The CAA and the aviation community have initiated two programmes:

  • The Fatigue Risk Management Panel facilitates the development of the aviation community expert views on fatigue management, and provides advice and information to the CAA on those issues. It will facilitate the development of documentation and associated resources, and monitor progress on these issues.
  • The CAA’s Policy and Regulatory Strategy unit will examine the regulatory framework underpinning fatigue risk management and consider whether improvements are needed to ensure it remains fit for purpose.

The CAA will collaborate with aviation participants, scientific experts, and government agencies to ensure that relevant information is used to form a sound fatigue risk management system and culture.

More information on these programmes can be found on the main CAA website here.

We have put together general information for fatigue and its management.  You can open our  Fatigue fact sheet here.

Working with other businesses

When there are multiple businesses at the same location, each business must do what they can, within their influence and control, to keep workers safe. In these situations, the most effective way to manage workplace health and safety is by working together.

Because businesses have duties to all workers and others affected by their work - not just those they directly employ or engage - they may well have overlapping duties. Ensuring that businesses work together for the health and safety of everyone in the workplace is a fundamental part of HSWA’s design.

In general terms, when we talk about businesses working together, we mean that all businesses must, so far as is reasonably practicable, consult, cooperate, and coordinate their activities with other businesses particularly when there are overlapping duties in relation to workplace health and safety. Overlapping duties mean that more than one business has health and safety duties in relation to the same matter. 

everyones responsibility

Why businesses must consult with each other

Consultation between businesses can help you all reach a common understanding and establish clear roles, responsibilities and actions in relation to work health and safety.

By working together, you can avoid unnecessary duplication of effort, for example when providing welfare or first aid facilities. Working together can also help identify and prevent gaps when managing health and safety risks for workers. 

Gaps can happen particularly when:

  • there’s a lack of understanding about how each businesses’ work activities may add to the health and safety risks in the workplace as a whole, or a chain of work activities
  • one business assumes the other business is taking care of a particular health and safety issue
  • the business who manages the risk is not the business in the best position to do so
  • businesses do not know what other work is happening and when.

The broader benefits of consultation include:

  • helping to ensure working arrangements on shared worksites and in contracting chains run smoothly and efficiently, which in turn can lead to productivity gains
  • businesses on a shared worksite or in a contracting chain working together to sort out problems – this will avoid the head contractor or landlord, for example, having to step in and sort out every problem on site or further down the contracting chain. 

What your business needs to do when working with other businesses

More than one business can have a duty in relation to the same matter (overlapping duties). This can occur when there are multiple businesses at the same location, for example:

  • construction sites
  • shopping centres and other multi-tenanted buildings, or
  • contracting chains.

However, businesses do not need to share a workplace to have overlapping duties.

Businesses with overlapping duties must, so far as is reasonably practicable, consult, cooperate and coordinate activities with other businesses so that you can all meet your joint responsibilities. Businesses do not need to duplicate each other’s efforts.

Your business cannot contract out of its duties, however you can enter reasonable relationships with other businesses to meet your duties. Note that your business still retains the responsibility to meet its own duties.

Businesses should also monitor each other to ensure everyone is doing what they agreed.

Working out the extent of your duty

The extent of your duty to manage risk depends on the ability of your business to influence and control the matter. Where there are overlapping duties, the extent of each business’s responsibility to carry out their duties will most likely be different. This will depend on what ability your business has to influence and control the health and safety matter (ie the more influence and control your business has over a health and safety matter, the more responsibility you are likely to have).

For example, a business can have influence and control over health and safety matters through:

  • control over work activity: a business in control of the work activity may be in the best position to control the health and safety risks.
  • control of the workplace: a business who has control over the workplace (and/or plant and structures at the workplace) will have some influence and control over health and safety matters arising from work carried out by another business.
  • control over workers: a business will have more influence and control over its own workers and contractors than those of another business.

A business with a higher level of influence and control (and with the greatest share of the responsibilities) will usually be in the best position to manage the associated risks.

A business with less control or influence may fulfil their responsibilities by making arrangements with the business with the higher level of influence and control 

The information presented in this document is intended for general use only. It should not be viewed as a definitive guide to the law, and should be read in conjunction with the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 and associated regulations (where relevant). 

Worker engagement

There are two resources for information on Worker engagement that can be accessed here:

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Health and safety representatives

Open our health and safety representatives fact sheet for information on electing, training and managing H&S representatives.

Open our health and safety committee fact sheet for information on the functions and obligations of a committee.

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