Airfield ops

Aerodrome & Safeguarding

Enabling safe and efficient aircraft movement

Airports carry out safeguarding to ensure any developments or activities within the aerodrome’s vicinity do not adversely affect the safe, efficient movement of aircraft.

At LCY we receive over 1000 aerodrome safeguarding consultations a year. These can relate to small-scale issues such as proposed loft extensions or children flying drones, up to larger proposals, from 300-metre skyscrapers to windfarms or wetland parks. We expect this number to increase as more people move to London and the city expands eastwards.

Safeguarding expertise

Many large London developments have taken our advice on aerodrome safeguarding – we can advise from initial design through to construction.

Aerodrome safeguarding is a legal requirement for airports under International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) regulations.

As London City Airport is the only airport actually in London, how we manage safeguarding is particularly important. It’s why we have a comprehensive aerodrome safeguarding policy overseen by a dedicated team, to ensure we are consulted on planning applications and any other activities which may affect the safe operation of aircraft.

The main types of safeguarding

PHYSICAL: protects the blocks of air through which aircraft fly

TECHNICAL: protects the integrity of radar, other electronic communications and navigational aids by preventing reflections or diffractions of radio signals

WILDLIFE HAZARD MANAGEMENT: As bird strikes are a leading cause of aircraft damage, it’s important not to attract birds to areas where they could come into close proximity with aircraft. 

Areas of interest within 10km of London City Airport

  • New developments and planning applications

  • Cranes and other tall construction equipment

  • If you plan to use a crane near the airport, please inform the CAA at arops@caa.co.uk or contact us directly at safeguarding@londoncityairport.com. Each crane permit costs £250 and requires at least 21 days’ notice.

  • Potential bird attractants, such as landscaping or outdoor eateries (extends 13km from LCY)

  • Lightings schemes – these can cause confusion if they distract from visual aids and runway lighting

  • Balloon or Chinese lantern releases

  • Filming or events involving lighting or pyrotechnics

  • Drones/UAVs (both commercial and privately owned) – learn more about drone safety at LCY

  • Wind turbines (extends 30km from LCY)

  • PV/solar panels

  • Vessels operating in the Docklands area

Contact London City Airport Safeguarding

Email us at safeguarding@londoncityairport.com and we’ll reply as soon as possible, though please allow 21 days.

Got an urgent or out-of-business-hours query? Call Aerodrome Operations on +44 (0)203203 2247.

Public Safety Zone (PSZ)

In October 2021 the Department for Transport (DfT) published revised guidance to standardise the shape and size of all PSZs. Given London City Airport’s unique characteristics, we agreed a bespoke PSZ with DfT in consultation with the CAA and published it in August 2023.

The area of our newly approved PSZ is narrower than standardised PSZs at other airports and shorter than our previous 2010 PSZ, so is less restrictive than before.

View London City Airport - Public Safety Zone

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