Proposal to develop a tailored set of maintenance regulations for general aviation - (DP 1809SS)

Closed 28 Aug 2018

Opened 9 Aug 2018

Results Updated 10 Oct 2018

About this consultation

We asked for feedback on the proposal to develop a set of maintenance regulations tailored specifically for general aviation (GA) that will be based on the best practices of other leading aviation jurisdictions.

The consultation asked respondents to identify current challenges they experienced in GA maintenance and opportunities to improve Australia's regulatory system. Respondents were also asked to consider how the United States, New Zealand, Europe, and Canada approach GA maintenance and comment on whether one or more of those regulation structures would be a suitable model for Australia.

Respondents

CASA received 89 responses to the consultation from a range of industry stakeholders including industry representative organisations, maintenance and training organisations, recreational flying and charter operators, as well as feedback from a number of individuals including aircraft maintenance engineers, pilots and private aircraft owners.

Summary of feedback

All respondents identified issues with the existing regulations and indicated support for change to a simpler, more understandable, set of rules. Of the 63 industry respondents who indicated a preference for an international rule set, 49 respondents (78%) preferred the United States' regulations and 7 respondents (11%) stated a preference for the New Zealand regulations (which are broadly based on the American approach). Twenty-one respondents (28%) also outlined concerns with aircraft engineer licenses and ratings (Part 66 of CASR) and their comments will be passed on to CASA's Part 66 post implementation review project team for consideration.

No respondents expressed an opinion that CASA should retain the existing regulations.

Next steps

We will now work with an industry Technical Working Group (TWG) appointed by the Aviation Safety Advisory Panel to finalise the policy.

The TWG will review input to this consultation. They will apply industry experience and technical expertise to isolate issues that may arise and work with CASA to determine the most effective way to proceed with development of the new regulatory structure.

We plan to consult on the agreed policy in November 2018. The draft legislation is scheduled for consultation in the first quarter of 2019.

Published Responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.

Overview

CASA is currently working to develop a new set of maintenance regulations tailored specifically for general aviation (GA), that will be based on the example of best practices in other leading aviation nations.

The new regulations seek to meet an overarching objective of streamlining maintenance requirements, minimising the level of regulatory burden and reducing costs while still maintaining the high aviation safety standards expected by all Australians.

How do we define general aviation?

General aviation covers all flying activity carried out by VH registered aircraft other than charter and air transport operations. This includes flying training, mustering, firefighting and emergency service operations, search and rescue, aerial surveying and photography, towing, and private flying.

Principles underpinning this work

Last year CASA established an Aviation Safety Advisory Panel (ASAP) made up of industry representatives. In July, the ASAP endorsed the following key principles that will underpin the proposed changes:

  • minimum regulatory compliance burden consistent with ensuring a level of safety appropriate for the general aviation and aerial work sectors
  • any changes are intended to be cost neutral or provide savings for the general aviation and aerial work sectors wherever possible.
  • a regulatory structure based to the maximum practical extent on an established and appropriate international standard
  • compliance with the standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) for general aviation:
    • Annex 6 Part II — International General Aviation — Aeroplanes
    • Annex 6 Part III, Section III — International General Aviation — Helicopters.

Benefits of basing the regulations on an existing model

Adopting a regulatory structure based on an established and appropriate international standard that is tried, tested and proven to be working effectively, is an efficient approach to delivering tangible improvements to Australia’s GA community. For example, in the United States there have been general aviation maintenance regulations in place for over 50 years. Why re-invent the wheel?

Why We Are Consulting

We will be working with industry on the development of these new regulations. As a first step, we are inviting the general aviation community to tell us about the challenges currently faced and highlight opportunities.

We also want industry to consider the practices of four leading aviation nations and provide us with feedback that will be used to choose the best model on which to base our new maintenance regulations for general aviation.

We have shortlisted, the United States, New Zealand, Europe and Canada as leaders in general aviation maintenance and their approaches align with the key principles for this work. The four regulatory models upheld by these leaders have been shortlisted  due to their safety record and simple, less prescriptive regulations.

On this page under the heading, "Related Documents” you will find a downloadable Word copy and PDF of this consultation. This is for ease of distribution and feedback within your organisation.   

What Happens Next

CASA anticipates the ASAP will establish a technical working group to help review industry input to this consultation and work with CASA to select and develop the most appropriate international model on which to base our proposed new maintenance regulations for general aviation. We aim to have the policy established by the end of this year.

At the end of the response period for public comment, we will review each comment and submission received. We will make all responses publicly available on the CASA Consultation Hub unless a respondent requests that their submission remain confidential. More information about how we consult is available on the CASA website.

You can subscribe to our consultation and rule making mailing list to be notified of future consultation or rule making.

What Happens Next

CASA anticipates the ASAP will establish a technical working group to help review industry input to this consultation and work with CASA to select and develop the most appropriate international model on which to base our proposed new maintenance regulations for general aviation. We aim to have the policy established by the end of this year.

Audiences

  • Air operators
  • Airworthiness organisations
  • Engineers
  • Manufacturers
  • Pilots

Interests

  • Airworthiness / maintenance
  • Aircraft certification and design