The structure of the Australian Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) is undergoing a major overhaul as the government responds to constant pressure from the aviation industry to improve the agency. The changes, expected to be implemented next month, include the removal of CASA’s board of directors. The position of the director of aviation safety will be replaced by a full-time CEO.
Civil aviation authorities
Thomas McSweeny, who has been FAA associate administrator for regulation and certification since October 1998, is leaving the agency this month to join Boeing as its director of international safety and regulatory affairs. He will be prohibited from any contact with the agency for one year.
Next month’s scheduled adoption of the final fractional operation rules–Part 91 Subpart K–will likely reignite the controversy between the FAA, JAA and some European countries on what constitutes a private versus commercial aircraft operation. The JAA has no equivalent rule and doesn’t have plans to promulgate any, according to British aviation lawyer Ian Clark.
In a welcomed shift in policy, business aircraft operators may now forego the STC process when installing class-B terrain awareness and warning systems (TAWS). That was the word handed down by the FAA’s certification branch to FSDOs recently, published as a flight standards airworthiness bulletin (FSAW 02-03A) directed to avionics safety inspectors.
The new European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) came almost silently to life last month–as if echoing the muted expectations that many in the aviation industry have of the organization. To optimists, the new body is Europe’s answer to the FAA, promising a new regime of clear, consistent and harmonized regulations and standards.
The FAA presented Elliott Aviation’s Moline, Ill., and Omaha, Neb. service facilities with the Diamond Award of Excellence for aviation maintenance training for the fifth consecutive year. The honor, which is part of the Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) awards program and is the highest achievement of its kind, recognizes technicians and maintenance facilities for excellence in maintenance training.
The task force established by the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC) to deal with the issue of regulating fractional ownership expects to issue new proposals by next month. The task force has indicated that it is working toward “an accommodation” with the FAA, but has warned that European rules will not necessarily “mirror” the FAA’s Part 91 Subpart K regime.
Byerly Aviation of Springfield, Ill., and Keystone Helicopter of West Chester, Pa., have both received the FAA’s prestigious Diamond Award of Excellence for participation in the maintenance technician awards program last year. The award is recognition for aviation companies that lead the industry in measurable commitment to training. The program is designed to ensure higher levels of training and knowledge for maintenance technicians.
U.S. airmen who misplace their certificates can get back into the air more quickly than in the past, thanks to a new FAA service. Replacement certificates and temporary authority to operate can be requested through an online account with the FAA Civil Aviation Registry Web site, http://registry.faa.gov.
The newly formed European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) is crafting a pricing policy for the certifications it can now grant. On April 15 in Paris, EASA executive director Patrick Goudou presented outlines of this policy, as well as details on the agency’s growth. In the European Union, EASA is slowly taking over from the JAA.