Next year Russian aircraft traffic will no longer comply with Soviet air traffic regulations.
On January 1st, 2003, Russia will cancel the Main Rules of Flights in the Air Space of the Soviet Union. On this day, the Federal Air Traffic Regulations valid for flights in the Russian Federation's air space will be enforced.
The regulations have been approved by an order issued jointly by Russian Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov, Transport Minister Sergei Frank and Managing Director of the Russian Air Space Agency Yuri Koptev.
The Regulations will be enforced by a governmental decree and will be binding for all aircraft flying in the Russian Federation's air space.
The Regulations have undergone considerable changes compared to the previous version. In particular, this refers to intervals of the so-called vertical separation. Similar Western European regulations envisage that the distance between an aircraft flying over another should be 300m minimum.
The Russian standard used to be higher, but now Russian requirements concerning the vertical separation will comply with European ones.
The Federal Air Traffic Regulations valid for flights in the Russian Federation's air space are targeted primarily at enhancing air traffic security.
For instance, the new regulations envisage that captains of aircraft flying along crossing trajectories at the same altitude are to secure a safe distance between them.
In order to ensure the flight security when encountering dangerous meteorological phenomena, malfunctioning equipment, etc. the captain of an aircraft has the right to change the flight altitude reporting immediately to the ground control.
Ultrasonic flights are now allowed only at an altitude of no less than 11,100m and in special zones at a lower altitude. The aforesaid limitations are not applicable to aircraft on a mission related to guarding and defending national borders.
Demonstration flights should be performed at a distance of no less than 200m from visitors. Any flights over the visitors' zone are forbidden.
In compliance with the new regulations, flights over Polar areas can be performed only by specially trained crews and aircraft specially equipped for such flights.
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969