Tuesday, 11 December 1990
Dáil Éireann Debate
211. Mr. D. Ahern asked the Minister for Tourism and Transport if there is any requirement on foreign airlines or individual foreign private airplanes to have proper indemnity insurance when they overfly Irish airspace; and the sanctions, if any, which can be taken in this regard; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Minister for Tourism and Transport (Mr. S. Brennan): Under the terms of the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation, Ireland and the other contracting states have agreed to, in general, allow aircraft registered in each others' countries to overfly their territories.
There is no international statutory requirement on private owners to insure against liability for loss or damage arising from the operation of their aircraft. While individual countries may impose such obligations, it is understood that very few do so.
In the case of commercial aircraft, owners' or operators' liability for loss or damage to passengers arising from the operation of their aircraft is generally covered as part of the conditions under which they are granted authorisations to operate.
Section 17 of the Air Navigation and Transport Act, 1988, provides that I can impose an obligation on owners or operators of aircraft to insure against, or  otherwise make financial provision to meet, liability arising in relation to loss or damage resulting from the operation of the aircraft.
I indicated in my reply to Question No. 29 of 5 December that I have arranged for an examination of this matter to be carried out by my Department. Representatives of the aviation industry and private aircraft owners will be consulted through the Air Navigation Advisory Council.
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