The SA Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) has given Comair the go-ahead for British Airways SA and kulula.com flights to return to the skies. British Airways SA and kululu flights return on Thursday 17 March.

In a statement, the SACCA says: “The cooperation and commitment of the Operator during this period signaled the seriousness in which the Operator took this matter and the openness displayed in the days leading up to this day. It is this collaboration that ensures that civil aviation safety remains a top priority in South Africa.”

Comair flights were grounded for five days and the airline did not refund passengers but rather asked them to reschedule. The SCAA says the priority was to ensure that Comair’s Air Operator Certificate (AOC) was in order: “The SACAA audited Comair following a spate of occurrences which posed safety risks by Kulula.com and BA Comair airlines.”

“The Regulator sought to confirm Comair’s compliance with applicable Civil Aviation Regulations (CARs). The inspection was also aimed at reviewing Comair’s safety management systems (SMS) and quality control management system (QA) to establish compliance related to the reporting, analysis and follow-up on occurrences, and corrective action plans to prevent recurrence.
This brings to an end a five-day long suspension of the AOC which was imposed by the Regulator from 12 March 2022. The Director of Civil Aviation heralds the commitment shown by the Regulator’s inspectorate team from the first day of the audit leading up to the sleepless nights spent evaluating evidence all in the interest of ensuring aviation safety,” the statement continued.

Comair passengers have been advised to not go to the airport unless the airline has confirmed their booking. The British Airways and kulula.com schedules will resume in a phased manner as the airline tries to clear its backlog of passengers left stranded by the suspension of flights.