Groups Ask for Six-month Delay of Insulation Rules

 - April 5, 2007, 11:30 AM

Last week, representatives from industry associations met with the FAA to discuss new regulations regarding aircraft insulation that they believe pose “a serious threat to continued operation after September 2 of many in-service Part 25 aircraft.” The meeting was called in response to a letter to FAA Administrator Marion Blakey that called for “an immediate 180-day extension” to the regulations. The letter, signed by the National Air Transportation Association and six other industry groups, including NBAA and the General Aviation Manufacturers Association, raised concerns with “a broader than originally intended application of regulations issued in 2003 addressing aircraft insulation.” The associations explained, “It has long been understood that the requirements of the final rules would apply to thermal and acoustic blankets installed in Part 121 airplanes. However, in corresponding guidance material released June 24 “it became clear that the rule was being applied to every insulating material in the fuselage of every Part 25 airplanes (both old and new) and every piece of installed equipment with insulation.” NATA said indications from the FAA are that relief from the requirements is forthcoming. Until then, according to NATA, the FAA is issuing guidance to its field inspectors that is intended “to prevent the unintended consequence of the rules as written.”