U.S. and E.U. clash over FAA reauthorization bill

 - May 4, 2009, 5:49 AM

The FAA reauthorization bill is at odds with the European Union-U.S. Aviation Safety Agreement signed in March 2008, according to John Brutton, the EU’s U.S. ambassador in Washington. While the FAA’s proposal to inspect MRO companies outside the U.S. twice a year doesn’t sit well with the EU, Brutton also identified as sticking points additional proposed regulations pertaining to training European pilots in the U.S., investment in U.S. airlines and transatlantic alliances.

Sarah MacLeod, executive director of the Aeronautical Repair Station Association, said another issue relates to legislation that would require drug- and-alcohol testing of foreign repair station personnel.

“It’s an issue of sovereignty. If passed, the legislation could force foreign repair stations
to surrender their certificate because their country does not allow its citizens to be randomly tested for drug and alcohol use,” she told AIN. “If the U.S. air carriers cannot obtain maintenance services from certified parties, they would have to fly mechanics on every flight to ensure routine maintenance during overseas [service].” The bill is pending in Congress.