Directive AV-06.1 INSTRUMENT RATING REQUIREMENTS
30 NOV 2020
Seventh Coast Guard District Auxiliary Policy Directive AV-06.1
Subj: DISTRICT SEVEN INSTRUMENT RATING REQUIREMENTS
1. PURPOSE. To establish District Seven policy requiring a current FAA Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) rating for a Pilot in Command (PIC) of District 7 Auxiliary Flight Missions.
2. ACTION. All District Seven Air Stations and Auxiliarists participating in Auxiliary Aviation Programs shall comply with the contents of this Directive. District 7 Auxiliary Instructor Pilots and Flight Examiners, Auxiliary Aviation Coordinators, Auxiliary Aviation Safety Officers, and the DSO-AV have been consulted and provided endorsement of this directive.
3. DIRECTIVES AFFECTED. Seventh Coast Guard District Auxiliary Policy Directive AV-06 is cancelled.
4. DISCUSSION. In the past there have been fatal accidents involving Auxiliary aircraft. Three accidents were caused by inadvertent flight into Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IMC). One of the three fatal accidents occurred on a mission during night conditions. The second pilot requirement for night and IFR missions carrying passengers or mission essential personnel was instituted to reduce operational risks associated with anticipated IMC and nighttime operations.
This directive is being issued to address the risk of an inadvertent encounter with IMC during Visual Flight Rules (VFR) missions, as well as inadvertent penetration of Restricted Airspace, ADIZ, or TFRs.
Seventh District Auxiliary Aviation utilizes the U.S. Coast Guard Risk Matrix system to determine risk versus gain for all Auxiliary missions. One of the greatest risks in Auxiliary Air operations is inadvertent IMC, which can often be encountered during offshore operations despite intentions to operate under Visual Flight Rules. With reduced flight visibilities resulting in an indistinct horizon, IFR rated pilots will immediately transition from outside visual references to cockpit instruments. In these conditions, spatial disorientation is more likely to happen to the non-instrument qualified pilot.
Seventh District Auxiliary flights routinely operate in or near sensitive airspace and challenging flight conditions. Encouraging IFR rated pilots for all Auxiliary flight operations will reduce the chance of airspace incursions and reduce the risk that inadvertent IMC can generate. In addition to the improvement in Auxiliary flight safety that IFR rated pilots offer, it also provides the Air Stations and the AACs with increased versatility when scheduling flights, and greatly enhances Auxiliary Aviation capability.
SAR check procedures include an IFR check for all instrument rated Auxiliary First Pilots and Aircraft Commanders. A precision approach, missed approach, non-precision approach, intercept and tracking courses, and an instrument hold at a fix are required maneuvers. Performance tolerances will be in accordance with FAA’s Airman Certification Standards (ACS). Seventh District Auxiliary Flight Examiners shall perform this check.
Unsatisfactory performance on the instrument portion of the SAR check will require the pilot, at his expense, to obtain training and an FAA Instrument Proficiency Check (IPC) from an approved FAA designated CFII or FAA check airman approved to perform an IPC. A suitable logbook endorsement by the CFII or Check Airman is required. Following satisfactory completion of the IPC, a different Auxiliary Flight Examiner will administer the repeat IFR check. Failure to satisfactorily complete this second IFR check will restrict the pilot from flying as Pilot-InCommand (PIC) on any Auxiliary Mission plus result in a downgrade from Aircraft Commander to Air Crew until the case is reviewed by the Seventh District Auxiliary Flight Examination Board. On all First Pilot SAR check rides, Flight Examiners will include flying by reference to instruments. Failure to meet FAA’s (ACS) will result in a pilot recertification to Air Crew.
Seventh District Air Stations may grant waivers in unique circumstances where temporary personnel limitations exist. Air Station AUXLO’s shall provide the AACs copies of these written waivers.
5. ACTION. All District Seven Air Stations and Auxiliarists participating in Auxiliary Aviation Programs shall comply with the contents of this Directive.
a. PIC’s of Auxiliary night and IFR missions carrying passengers or mission essential personnel must be IFR rated and current except as permitted by Air Station waiver.
b. The USCG Risk Assessment Matrix shall be used for planning all Auxiliary missions. The Auxiliary Air Mission Sheet will be completed by the PIC and transmitted to the Air Station Operations Duty Officer prior to the flight.
6. RESPONSIBILITY. The District Staff Officer – Aviation (DSO-AV) is tasked with recommending changes for this Directive to the Director via the District Chief of Staff.
J. W. Briggs
Commander, United States Coast Guard
Director of Auxiliary
Seventh Coast Guard District
Copy: All D7 Air Stations