Proposed Part 145 Rules Could Prove Thorny

 - May 24, 2012, 3:33 PM

The FAA has issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) for Part 145 repair stations, in an effort to “modernize the regulations to keep pace with current industry standards and practices.” The new rules revise repair station ratings, certification requirements and how repair stations serve air carriers.

A significant change revises the ratings system, cutting ratings to five from eight. Radio, instrument and accessory classes would be combined under the component class, with no distinction among types of components.

The Aircraft Electronics Association (AEA) and Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA) are evaluating the NPRM and preparing comments, which are due by August 20. “This proposal makes wholesale changes to the avionics industry with damaging and costly repercussions,” the AEA noted. “The [FAA] proposes to remove radio and instrument ratings and allow airframe-rated repair stations to work on radio and instrument components without qualifications or ratings. In addition, the proposal eliminates many of the currently utilized opportunities for mobile maintenance operations.” ARSA executive director Sarah MacLeod said, “As with all proposed rules, it may create as many problems as it is trying to fix.”

AIN will publish a more in-depth article in next Wednesday’s mxReports e-newsletter and welcomes reader comments on this issue.