Legal Aspects of Airport Programs

Legal and regulatory aspects of the temporary parking of overflow aircraft

COVID-19 has grounded aircraft all around the country exceeding the gate and "regular" parking capacity of several airports. Airport operators and flight operators have coordinated for parking these overflow aircraft in non-traditional configuration (i.e., denser parking configuration than the default layout) and on unusual areas of the airfield (e.g., taxiways, runways, decommissioned pavement). At many airports, portions of the movement area were closed and turned into temporary parking (status? non-movement area? outside of the AOA?).

What are the legal and regulatory implications of this temporary parking? What is the matrix of responsibilities between the airport operator, the aircraft owner, the flight operator, etc.? What are the obligations of the airport operator (incl. those pertaining to obstacle evaluations and submission of 7460 form)? What if the aircraft is damaged by a third party on this temporary parking area? What if the aircraft damage airfield assets e.g., due to excessive static loads or contamination of asphalt concrete by oil/fuel spill? Are aircraft parked on these areas subject to the same limitations that at the gate (e.g., APU restrictions for noise mitigation purpose)?

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Idea No. 538