FAA has rubber-stamped a one-year extension that permits U.S. repair stations with European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) certifications to inspect and approve parts that do not have certain EASA-required documentation.
The move helps U.S. repair stations comply with a requirement in guidance–officially Maintenance Annex Guidance (MAG) Change 6–issued to support the U.S.-E.U Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreement (BASA). Change 6, issued in mid-2016, requires all new parts entering a repair station to have an airworthiness approval tag—an 8130-3 in the U.S.
EASA’s rules for production-approval holders (PAHs) require issuance of a tag, but FAA’s PAH rules assume a part made under them is airworthy and don’t require specific documentation. Because of this, many U.S. PAHs don’t take the extra step of issuing tags, creating a potential issue for the 1,400 U.S.-based repair stations with EASA certifications. The issue will reportedly be addressed in MAG Change 7, but it is not clear when the update–once expected last year–will be in place.
The Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA) says it “will continue to press regulators on both sides of the Atlantic in order to realize that long-sought goal.”
ARSA last year led a multi-organization effort to ensure the inspection authority was extended until this month. The new FAA policy, Notice N 8900.479 targeting FAA inspectors, mirrors the previous policy with a cancellation date of Aug. 7, 2019.
FAA has a related program in place to help distributors cope with parts in inventory that lack the required EASA documentation.
Source: MRO Network