About HC-A

  • HC-A (Helideck Certification-Africa) was set up to better serve the needs of the Oil & Gas Industry within the African Region.
  • Highly qualified and independent HC-A inspectors based in South Africa, provide world-class inspection and certification services at a much reduced cost, when compared with overseas operators.
  • The inspection process is according to the UKCAA Publication UKCAP437 (Edition 9 February 2023) whilst the checklists reflect International IOGP standards and include the very latest developments as demanded by Industry Best Practice.
  • Experience and expertise is shared within the FLIGHT SAFETY GROUP based in Australia, of which HC-A is a proud member, as well as through active membership of Industry bodies such as SAOGA.

For information regarding general aviation safety auditing and accident investigation, please refer to the Flight Safety Africa p


All offshore Helidecks should be inspected and certified on a regular basis – normally every 1 or 2 years.

No Inspection and therefore No Certificate, may lead to:

  • Culpable liability in the event of a helideck incident or accident
  • No Insurance payout
  • The Helicopter Operator refusing to fly to/from the deck

Furthermore, the inspection itself should be carried out by a reputable and qualified third-party agency.

The use of in-house staff or external, unqualified parties will mean:

  • Sub-standard inspections and non-detection of vital non-compliances
  • Zero practical help and advice with resolving any findings
  • Non-acceptance of the Certificate by Reputable Operators
  • Failure of the certification to withstand rigorous legal scrutiny in the event of an accident

In African waters there is often a Regulatory vacuum when it comes to this vital and safety-critical discipline.
This puts the onus squarely on the Oil & Gas Operators to ensure adherence to a globally accepted standard.

So, accepting that an inspection is essential, how do you differentiate between qualified and unqualified certification agencies?

Is it possible to obtain a professional Helideck without importing inspectors from Europe or Asia – with all the added hassle, delays and expense?

HC-A was established to address all of these issues.

Located in South Africa, we offer Helideck Inspections based on the global UKCAA CAP 437 and IOGP standards. Our inspectors are all seasoned aviation professionals with IOGP and Aviation Risk Management credentials, who have been formally trained through an approved training facility. Helideck Certification-Africa is ISO9001:2015 certified – ensuring our clients of the highest level of Quality Management Systems in all our operations.

Our local service means:

  • Regional knowledge and experience
  • Much quicker response time and far greater flexibility
  • Fewer visa complications and logistical problems
  • Far less travel and therefore significantly less cost
  • Fees up to 40% cheaper than the few companies of comparable quality

Our existing “blue chip” clients chose HC-A for all of the above reasons, but also for the personal assistance and guidance we offer after the inspection.

Our service is distinguished by ongoing feedback, advice and education, ensuring that you don’t only achieve certification, but also remain abreast of an ever-evolving element of our industry.

HC-A guarantees you incomparable quality and value.

To book your inspection and receive a quote, contact us – we are standing by to assist.


Helideck Inspection is the main service we provide to clients, specialising in offshore helidecks for the resources industries. The Inspection and Certification of off-shore and on-shore helicopter landing sites are carried out in accordance with UKCAA CAP437 (Edition 9 February 2023) and international standards, such as ICAO Annex 14 VOL II, ICAO 9261, IOGP 690 and all local Civil Aviation Regulatory requirements.


UKCAA CAP 437 Edition 9 February 2023, now stipulates that a friction test will be required irrespective of whether there is a net fitted or not. In addition, a friction test is now valid for 12 months. If the friction test results show a reading of at least 0.1above the required readings, in all the required areas, the friction test will be valid for 24 months. UKCAA CAP 437 Chapter 3 Section 7 states:- “A review of helideck friction measurement techniques has concluded that the test method should involve a friction measuring device that:

  • employs the braked wheel technique;
  • is able to control the wetness of the deck during testing;
  • includes electronic data collection, storage & processing;
  • allows the whole deck surface to be covered to a resolution of not less than 1 square metre.

The minimum average surface friction value of 0.60mu should be achieved across the area inside the TD/PM, and on the TD/PM and H markings. (0.65 on a moving helideck). Outside the TD/PM the required reading average is now 0.50.

HC-A carries out friction testing using the Findlay Irvine Micro Grip Tester which is the only type that currently meets UKCAA CAP 437 requirements. This was adapted for use by the manufacturer Findlay Irvine in conjunction with the HCA.
Friction testing may be done as part of the overall inspection process, or as a stand-alone inspection where required.
Helicopter Landing Site (HLS)

Helideck Certification-Africa (Pty) Ltd with in-depth experience in offshore Helideck and on-shore Helicopter Landing Site inspections provides new build, new design and design modification Certification for Helidecks and Helicopter Landing Sites in accordance with UKCAA CAP 437, I.C.A.O. Annex 14 VOL II, and national regulatory requirements.


The Helideck Certification-Africa team has the expertise and experience to ensure that all aspects of national and international compliancy levels are maintained, and that aviation operations are conducted to the highest level of operational safety. Audits and inspections are conducted in an objective manner, using quantitative and qualitative measures to provide total compliance with formal ICAO Safety Management Systems, including proactive Accident Prevention Programs as described in ICAO Docs 9376 & 9422; UKCAP 437 and International Civil Aviation Organisation regulations.


HC-A follows strict auditing procedures for the process of inspection and certification, including:

  • An entry meeting with relevant key personnel to explain the process and key aspects of the audit.
  • A qualitative and quantitative inspection of aircraft, helidecks/helipads and all related operational aspects using a comprehensive check list that reflects all requirements of applicable national and international aviation standards and regulations.
  • During helideck inspections, various instruments are used to test compliance, including the Findlay Irvine Micro Grip friction tester – the only one UKCAA approved – for the helideck surface and inclinometers for surface level incline calculations. Certification extends to operational safety and procedures, including lighting, helideck markings, obstacle free surfaces, fuel installations, fire-fighting (including foam testing), rescue equipment etc.
  • During audits and inspections, photographs are taken for record verification and specific documents relevant to regulation compliance are filed.
  • An exit meeting with key personnel to ensure consensus on non-compliance issues based on the presentation of objective evidence.
  • A final comprehensive report is presented in which all findings are recorded and photographs included, supporting various aspects of the audit and inspection.
  • The Inspector works closely with the relevant Master or OIM to assist with the close-out of all findings and non-compliances, to ensure maximum operating safety of the helideck