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can i still fly if i dont pass the Ishihara test

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can i still fly if i dont pass the Ishihara test

Old 24th Jan 2019, 09:48
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can i still fly if i dont pass the Ishihara test

Hi here is my problem I have had a UK private pilots licence since 1981 and I went on to get my IMC, MULTI ENGINE, QFI and BCPL. With over 3000hrs, I then stopped flying in 2005.

I now want to get only my PPL current just so I can go flying for fun. I have all ways had a class 1 medical from day one but all ways had a problem with the Ishihara test and was sent to have a lantern test and passed every time but the CAA don't use this test anymore so here is the question: can I still hold a PPL if I can not pass the Ishihara test in full, as the CAA never had problem with my colour vision before?
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Old 24th Jan 2019, 15:13
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A PPL? Yes.
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Old 24th Jan 2019, 16:58
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Under EASA rules you may get a Class 2 medical - which is valid for a PPL - if you fail the various tests but may/will be awarded a VCL limitation that means Valid by Day Only. Same for LAPL medical - but you cannot hold instrument or instructing qualifications on a LAPL(A), and I'm not sure but a LAPL probably restricts you to SEP under 2000 kg.

The CAA do have an alternative to the lantern test.
(c) Those failing the Ishihara test should be examined by:

(1) Anomaloscopy (Nagel or equivalent). This test is considered passed if the colour match shows normal trichromacy, i.e. a matching midpoint of 38-42 scale units and the matching range is 4 scale units or less; or by

(2) Colour Assessment and Diagnosis (CAD) Test. This is considered passed if the threshold is less than 6 SU for deutan deficiency, or less than 12 SU for protan deficiency. A threshold greater than 2SU for tritan deficiency indicates an acquired cause which should be investigated.

Details of EASA rules in the Annex to ED Decision 2011/015/R - the AMCs and GM to Part Med.
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Old 24th Jan 2019, 23:17
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I failed the Ishihara test at my first class 2 medical. I subsequently took the CAD test at Gatwick and passed. I am deemed “colour safe” and now hold a night qualification and IMC [IR(r)}, so give it a go, there’s nothing to lose. ( I also failed the lantern test in the past, not related to my flying). SF
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Old 25th Jan 2019, 08:15
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You may find that having passed a lantern test before you might find you have grandfather rights, but even if not, having passed a lantern test in the past, odds are in your favour that you would pass the CAD test.

I suggest you book your class 2 medical with an aeromedical centre that has the equipment to do a CAD test if necessary. (DOI retired AME and out of touch with current rules so this advice may be wrong.)
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Old 25th Jan 2019, 18:59
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I failed the Ishihara test initially at school in the 1960's. When it came to my initial Class 3 (as it was in those days) I went to the CAA's medical centre at Heathrow (yes, they had one there in 1982!) Having safely passed the medical, though once again failing the Ishihara test, I enquired with the doctor in the white coat (yes, really!) about a future flying commercially. He kindly agreed to do the lantern test there and then, which I passed. However, I was -3.5 dioptre, which was within the Class 3 and Class 2 limits, but outside the Class 1 limits at the time. However, I pressed on and eventually obtained an unrestricted Basic Commercial Pilot Licence (BCPL), passing all the commercial exams and the CPL flight test. Fast forward 25 years and in my late 50's I decided to have a go at the Flying Instructor course. In those days, you needed a Class 1, so I presented myself at Gatwick Medical Dept. Since the 1980s, the visual acuity requirements had been sensibly relaxed and I was now comfortably inside. However, I again failed the Ishihara test. The doctor conducting the test got out a plastic flimsy and stuck it in a reader 'ah yes, you passed the lantern test at Heathrow in 1982. All good - pass!' Excellent record-keeping, thanks, CAA! Class 1 duly issued. 2,500 hours later, I'm still instructing, but sensibly on a Class 2 medical, once a year in stead of the every 6 months I had to endure until they changed the rules back.

Oh, and I converted the BCPL to a CPL on encouragement from the CAA - I had the hours by then and I think they were keen to get BCPLs off the books. One snag - I'd taken the CPL flight test in a Warrior, approved at the time but then they'd decided it needed to be a 'high performance complex type', so I had to do another check in a 201T Arrow...

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Old 25th Jan 2019, 21:48
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So long as the CAA have you on record as "colour safe", you should be OK. Otherwise you are likely to end up with a VCL. Good luck!
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Old 25th Jan 2019, 23:00
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A CAA PPL is valid for life, if you fly LAA Permit aircraft or (the formally known as) Annex II aircraft you can self declare your medical fitness.

Please correct any any errors in the above text.
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Old 30th Jan 2019, 13:45
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Hi all thank you all for your help I have sorted it all out now and the CAA are giving me my medical back under grandfather rights so back in the air I go
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