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Enhancing support for air crash victims and their families

ICAO

ICAO elevated an existing Recommended Practice to a Standard in 2022, thus heightening the responsibility on States to establish legislation, regulations and policies in support of assistance to aircraft accident victims and their families.

MONTREAL – At the occasion of International Day Commemorating Air Crash Victims and their Families (20th February), ICAO Council President Salvatore Sciacchitano has issued the following statement:

“Safety is and has always been the top priority for aviation and ICAO. This has resulted in remarkable progress achieved by international air transport over the decades of its development. However, despite these advances, aircraft accidents remain a sobering reminder of the persistent need to continue progress towards our zero fatality goal.  

The ICAO Council established 20 February as the International Day Commemorating Air Crash Victims and their Families in coordination with associations representative of victims and their families to provide governments and industry with an annual reminder of the onus upon them to improve the care, resources and timely and comprehensive information that accident victims and their loved ones need following such tragic circumstances. 

Respect for victims of aircraft accidents and their families’ mental, physical and spiritual well-being is paramount to ICAO and to all aviation stakeholders. With the help of the insights and appeals of committed representatives of victims and their families and the support of all stakeholders, the ICAO Council is assuring continuous advocacy and attention for these important global priorities, and helping States set the regulatory framework through the provisions of the Convention on International Civil Aviation. 

In this regard, ICAO elevated an existing Recommended Practice to a Standard in 2022, thus heightening the responsibility on States to establish legislation, regulations and policies in support of assistance to aircraft accident victims and their families. ICAO is currently working on accident investigation standards and recommended practices towards enhancing the comprehensive and timely provision of information to accident victims and their families. 

A training course has also been developed to help regulators set out appropriate family assistance legislation and plans and ICAO has established a dedicated expert group to enhance the implementation of practical measures related to assistance to aircraft accident victims and their families. 

As part of our ongoing efforts to raise awareness of this important subject, the second symposium on Assistance to Aircraft Accident Victims and their Families (AAAVF) is planned to be held in the Kingdom of the Netherlands in November later this year.”   

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