Aerodrome Safety Circular
Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) safety information on rocket-deployed aircraft emergency parachute systems.
This circular is to provide information for the ARFF to respond safely to incidents or accidents involving aircraft equiped with rocket-deployed aircraft recovery parachutes.
Following the crash of a small aircraft equipped with a rocket-deployed recovery parachute that had not been deployed, the emergency responders reported that some of the existing warning labels did not provide sufficient information on safety precautions for handling such systems when responding to an emergency. The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued a safety recommendation to provide emergency responders with training and information on such systems.
To this date, a minimal number of these systems are in use in Canada. However, as the use of these systems received significant interest in the U.S., their use in Canada is expected to grow. It is important for airport operators to obtain and disseminate information regarding rocket-deployed emergency parachutes to the on-site and off-site responding agencies, to allow them to introduce pertinent information in their site-specific ARFF training and emergency response plan procedures.
The following Web sites include information that is currently available on rocket-deployed parachute systems:
Awareness and training information should be provided to emergency responders to, first, identify the presence of an un-deployed emergency rocket-deployed parachute system and, second, de-activate it to render it harmless.
The information and pictures provided in the document published by the manufacturer, Ballistic Recovery Systems (BRS), entitled BRS Ballistic Parachutes: Information for Emergency Personnel, which is available at the following Web site: http://www.brsparachutes.com/files/brsparachutes/files/First%20Responders.pdf, should be used as reference for the development of response procedures to maximize the safety of emergency responders.
For additional information on this issue, please contact Bernard Valois of the Aerodromes and Air Navigation Branch in Ottawa, at 613 990-3708.
Aerodromes and Air Navigation Circulars are available electronically at:
Jennifer J. Taylor
Aerodromes and Air Navigation