Floatplane Operators


Are you reporting your external loads?

On May 11, 2006 Transport Canada (TC) issued an exemption that allowed commercial air taxi operators flying float airplanes to carry non-type certified or STC approved external loads.

These external loads are typically canoes, boats and building supplies, such as plywood sheets. The exemption is described in the TC Commercial and Business Aviation Advisory Circular 0232R2 which is dated May 24, 2006.

The exemption allows commercial operators to carry the loads described, as long as they complete a trial flight before the revenue flight and meet other requirements. It also requires the operators to file reports with TC about each load they have carried under the exemption.

The reporting requirements do not apply to loads that are approved under the aircraft’s type certificate or via an STC, just the ones flown under the exemption.

TC has received very few of these reports to date, indicating either very few commercial floatplane operators are carrying external loads or very few are completing the reporting requirements.

If you are a commercial floatplane operator and are carrying external loads please read the circular to ensure you are complying with it.

Private pilots who fly floatplanes are reminded this exemption does not apply and the CARs require all external loads carried on private aircraft must be approved in the aircraft’s type certificate or via an STC, LSTC or other airworthiness approval process.