This spring the long-awaited Subpart K to FAR Part 91 regulations is expected to go
Federal Aviation Regulations
Suggesting that many of the new aviation rules issued in the name of security may be unconstitutional, National Air Transportation Association president Jim Coyne recently called on the industry to play “hardball” over some of the more onerous restrictions, including the lack of access to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA).
In an effort to protect National Football League Super Bowl XLII patrons and players from the possibility of a terrorist strike, government authorities plan to implement temporary flight restrictions (TFR) over the Phoenix area in addition to traffic-management initiatives.
Prompted in part by NTSB recommendations arising from the July 1996 crash of TWA Flight 800 off Long Island, the FAA has developed an enhanced airworthiness program for airplane systems (EAPAS) to increase awareness of wiring system degradation and improve both maintenance and design of electrical systems.
With the forcible shutdown of Chicago Meigs Field fresh in their minds, several members of the House aviation subcommittee called to eliminate some of the security restrictions that have been imposed on general aviation as a result of 9/11 and continuing unspecified terrorist threats. And general aviation trade associations pleaded with the lawmakers to create a cohesive federal policy on airspace and airport shutdowns.
The FAA has revised the regulations covering temporary flight restrictions by creating a separate set of conditions to cover sporting events and airshows (new FAR 91.145) and revising the existing rules to apply only to disaster and hazard areas (retitled FAR 91.137).
A few days after last September 11 it became apparent that the FAA and even the Department of Transportation did not have much say in aviation security matters. Both FAA Administrator Jane Garvey and Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta admitted as much in congressional hearings one week later.
Still unclear at press time was how Special Federal Aviation Regulation (SFAR) 91 will affect general aviation, particularly business aircraft and private aircraft with mtows exceeding 12,500 lb.
General aviation received some good news and some not-so-good news last month with regard to airport security.
Judging from testimony at a hearing on the FAA’s new air-tour proposals, FAR Part 136 might be a solution in search of a problem. Speaker after speaker told the FAA that the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) should be withdrawn, scrapped or, at the very least, rewritten.