Commonwealth Numbered Regulations - Explanatory Statements

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Issued by the authority of the Minister for Transport and Regional Development

Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Act 1959

Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Regulations (Amendment)

Part IVA of the Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Act 1959 (the Act) imposes a requirement that carriers of passengers under the Act are to be insured against liability to passengers for death or personal injury. A carrier must insure each passenger carried for a minimum of $500,000 or its international equivalent.

Section 41D of the Act provides that the insurance coverage may not be affected by any warranty or exclusion in the contract of insurance, except as prescribed by regulations.

Subregulation 9(1) of the Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Regulations (the Carriers' Liability Regulations) allows contracts of insurance to exclude liability by adopting certain standard exclusion clauses used by the Australian and international aviation insurance industries. The standard exclusion clauses are listed in subregulation 9(2) of the Carriers' Liability Regulations, and the texts of those exclusion clauses appear at Note 2 to the Carriers' Liability Regulations.

The proposed Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Regulations (Amendment) (the proposed Regulations) will add a new standard exclusion clause to those permitted by regulation 9 of the Carriers' Liability Regulations. The new exclusion clause, "Nuclear Risks Exclusion Clause (AVN.38B)" is an update of the existing "Aviation Radioactive Contamination Exclusion Clause (General) (Aviation 38)". Nevertheless, Aviation 38 must be retained as a standard exclusion clause until such time as it is no longer used in insurance contracts.

AVN. 38B, like Aviation 38, excludes insurance coverage of damage to property or legal liability occasioned by ionising radiation or radioactive contamination. AVN 38B is intended to better dovetail with international practice relating to carriage of dangerous goods and to exclude risks more properly covered by nuclear pool insurance.

Details of the Regulations appear in the Attachment.

The Regulations will commence on notification in the Gazette.


Clause 1 - Amendment

Clause 1 provides that the Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Regulations are amended as set out in these regulations.

Clause 2 - Regulation 9 (Prescribed exclusions of insurer's liability)

Subclause 2.1 amends paragraph 9(2)(a) of the Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Regulations by removing a comma from after the words "(also called 'Aviation 38')". This brings the paragraph into conformity with paragraphs 9(2)(b) and 9(2)(c).

Subclause 2.2 inserts a new paragraph 9(2)(aa). This new paragraph adds a fourth standard exclusion clause, "Nuclear Risks Exclusion Clause", to those currently permitted in the insurance contracts required by Part IVA of the Civil Aviation (Carriers' Liability) Act 1959.

The subclause also replaces the Note to subregulation 9(2) with a new Note, which contains the texts of each permissible exclusion clause, including the added "Nuclear Risks Exclusion Clause".

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