The European Commission proposed new guidelines last week designed to harmonize rules and regulations that dictate the operation of unmanned aerial systems, which the EC designates as remotely piloted aircraft systems. Potential European operators are eager to put unmanned vehicles into service as soon as possible. The proposed new European guidelines will look at safety, security, privacy, data protection and insurance liability issues.
European Aviation Safety Agency
The European Commission plans to set “tough new standards” to regulate the operation of UAVs, known as remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) in Europe, before they are more widely introduced into unrestricted airspace in 2016. The standards will cover safety, security, privacy, data protection, insurance and liability, the commission said.
The European Aviation Safety Agency’s (EASA) four-year delay in, and disproportionately high fees charged for, certifying the Robinson R66 turbine single might suggest a bigger problem with the bilateral agreement between the U.S. and Europe that governs the certification of aircraft and components.
The European Parliament adopted a new accident/incident-reporting rule on March 4. The legislation is intended to accelerate the flow of relevant accident/incident information, thereby speeding the analysis and adoption of new procedures to reduce accidents.
The EASA has published a new requirement in certification–“operational suitability data” (OSD)–mandating that aircraft manufacturers, including those building helicopters, submit data the EASA considers important for safe operations. OSD covers pilot, maintenance staff and simulator qualification; the master minimum equipment list (MMEL); and possibly other areas, depending on the aircraft’s systems.
Berlin-based Lufthansa Bombardier Aviation Services (LBAS) opened its new line service operation in Zurich, Switzerland, on February 20. Following a two-day review by German aviation officials acting on behalf of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), the facility was cleared to begin operations. ExecuJet Europe has partnered with LBAS to offer line maintenance support for Bombardier business jets, including the Learjet 40, 45 and 60, as well as the Challenger series and Global Express, XRS, Global 5000 and Global 6000.
FlightSafety International (FSI) received approval from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) for its Embraer Legacy 500 maintenance training program on February 21. Embraer Executive Jets factory and authorized service center personnel are already receiving training on the under-development Legacy 500, and FSI will begin providing training services to operators of the new jet immediately following its certification.
Kurt Robinson was generally upbeat about the prospects for his family’s iconic helicopter company, during yesterday’s Heli-Expo press conference. Last year the company delivered its 11,000th helicopter and it will soon deliver its 500th R66 single-engine turbine ship. Production currently stands at two to three R66s, five R44s and one R22 per week.
Jet Aviation Hong Kong recently received approval from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to provide line and base maintenance for the Gulfstream G450 The MRO is a Gulfstream factory-authorized warranty service center for the G450/G550/G650. Jet Aviation Hong Kong offers line maintenance, inspections and defect rectifications, AOG support and has access to a 99,027-sq-ft hangar. The company holds Hong Kong CAD maintenance repair station approval, an FAA repair station certificate and mainland China JMM approval for PRC-registered aircraft.
AAR’s aircraft maintenance operation in Lake Charles, La., received certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to work on European widebodies. The MRO previously worked under a short-term approval granted through AAR’s EASA-certified facility in Miami. The facility received its FAA certification for domestic aircraft in November. The Lake Charles MRO, one of six that AAR operates in North America, provides services that include scheduled maintenance, structural repairs and re-engineering aircraft interiors.
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