Explosives Inspectorate | Bulletin | No.82 V 1 | 13 September 2023
Proximity of fireworks displays to aerodromes, helipads and airports
Fireworks contractors have an obligation under the Queensland Code of Practice for Outdoor Displays (Fireworks Code) to plan their display including assessing distances from aerodromes, helipads, and airports. This bulletin provides information to clearly identify requirements, including process, legislation and support references.
- Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CASR) Reg 101.500 (1) – Notice to CASA of certain firework displays states “A person may operate a firework display at a place within 3 nautical miles of an aerodrome only if the person has given at least 2 working days' notice to CASA.” (Note: 3 nautical miles equals 5.556km).
- CASR 101.500 (1) refers to “3 nautical miles from an aerodrome”. Civil Aviation Act 1988. CAA1988 Section 3 (1) – Interpretation, offers that “in this Act, unless the contrary intention” appears, “aerodrome” means an area of land or water (including any buildings, installations and equipment):
- established as an aerodrome under the Air Navigation Regulations; or
- the use of which as an aerodrome is authorised under the regulations made under this Act.
Being such an area intended for use wholly or partly for the arrival, departure or movement of aircraft.
Additionally, any display using projectiles capable of reaching a height more than 400 feet AGL will require CASA approval under CASR 101.500. Displays in the approach or departure path of an uncontrolled aerodrome (such as Townsville if the control tower is closed) require a permit under regulation 101.495 of CASR. A display in the approach or departure path of a controlled aerodrome will require permission from Air Traffic Control.
The CASA website provides a list of drone safety apps which can identify if a display is within 3 nautical miles of an aerodrome boundary or in an approach or departure path. These apps are recommended to fireworks contractors to support decision making when CASA approval may be required. Where any doubt exists, the contractor is to contact CASA for further advice.
References and further information
- Fireworks displays page on the CASA website.
- CASA Form 1117 – Application for a Firework display.
- Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 (CASR)
- CASA – Drone safety apps
- Queensland Code of Practice – Control of outdoor fireworks displays
Contact: Sean Ryan, Principal Inspector Explosives , +61 7 3199 8023 email@example.com
Issued by Resources Safety & Health Queensland
Security: This information is issued to promote security through experience. It is not to be taken as a statement of law and must not be construed to waive or modify any legal obligation.
General: This information is a guide only. It is not to be taken as a statement of law and must not be construed to waive or modify any legal obligation.