Friday, 15 April 2022

DfT appoints Nick Denton to new independent aviation panel

The Traffic Commissioner for West Midlands has been appointed to lead a new independent aviation panel to strengthen transparency at the Civil Aviation Authority.

The Department for Transport (DfT)  announced this week, the first appointment to a new independent aviation panel created to strengthen transparency around decision-making and regulatory processes at the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Nick Denton, current Traffic Commissioner for West Midlands, has been selected by ministers following a diligent recruitment process run by DfT.

He brings expertise in investigative processes and procedures following many years working as a Traffic Commissioner and, before that, in the civil service.

The panel is fully independent and impartial of the CAA and is available to review eligible decisions made by the CAA, which is responsible for the regulation of aviation safety, use of airspace and the licensing and financial fitness of airlines, among other things.

The panel will be open to review eligible decisions taken after 2 May 2022.

It will soon be open to individuals whose cases meet a certain threshold if they remain unsatisfied following the CAA’s new internal review process.

Eligible decisions cover personnel licensing and certification decisions, such as those following an airspace infringement or the decision to suspend a licence or endorsement to an instructor or examiner.

The panel will consider whether the CAA correctly followed its processes and procedures in arriving at a decision. It will have the power to remit the case back to the CAA where it investigates and considers the CAA has not done this.

Nick Denton, Traffic Commissioner, said:  "I’m very pleased to be appointed to the panel and to offer my expertise in reviewing cases with a fair, proportionate and independent eye, as I have done up to now in my Traffic Commissioner role.

Decision-making processes must be understandable and transparent to those whom they affect and people need to be confident that they have received fair treatment. I will do my utmost to ensure that the panel achieves these outcomes."

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