The Civil Aviation Authority is an entity which regulates all aspects of civil aviation in the United Kingdom.
The CAA is regarded as the United Kingdom’s unilateral body which has an overreaching portfolio of responsibilities which are related to everything that has to do with civil aviation. To understand what the CAA does, we first need to understand what we mean by civil aviation. The difference between civil aviation and military aviation is quite simple – Air Forces are governed by the rules of military engagement and are under the jurisdiction of the relevant country’s air force and government; in this case the Ministry of Defence and the Royal Air Force.
Civil Aviation, on the other hand, is literally everything else which includes air freight, recreational flying, private air transport, business jets and, of course, commercial airliner traffic. The biggest role that the CAA has to play is to ensure that all safety standards are met to ensure that the passengers are flying an air worthy and well-serviced aircraft.
Their role includes inspections to make sure that all safety standards are adhered to as well as ensuring that aircraft goes through all the necessary checks and balances regarding servicing and milestone checks in relation to the amount of takeoffs and landings made as well as the hours that aircraft have spent in the sky. The biggest cause of air crashes is metal fatigue, which is caused by repeated pressurisation of the aircraft cabin when it takes to the sky and this is one area where the CAA is very active.
The CAA also issues licences to each and every person that is involved in civil aviation, including pilots, ground staff and even airport staff. It is also responsible for administering alcohol and drug testing on all pilots. A modern phenomenon that the CAA is now involved in regulating is the flying of drones.