The FAA has agreed to publish a policy statement on the use of remote connectivity technology and tools that align with industry-recommended guidance as the agency works to release more formal guidance. Its statement comes as the industry has pushed for such guidance that paves the way for use of live stream or other visual and audio tools for activities such as inspection and tests.
In an August 7 letter to Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA) executive director Sarah MacLeod, senior FAA officials said they anticipate release of an Advisory Circular on use of remote connectivity technology and tools in October 2019, but the interim policy statement would be issued in the coming months.
“The policy statement will allow industry to begin using remote connectivity upon its publication,” said Dorenda Baker, executive director of the Aircraft Certification Service, and Rick Domingo, executive director of the Flight Standards Service. They added that current policy does not prohibit the use of remote connectivity.
This letter came in response to an appeal made by 16 industry organizations, including ARSA, for the agency to adopt recommended guidance for use of the remote technologies.
The industry assembled a recommended draft AC after consulting with the FAA on a draft policy covering “remote witnessing using video” for engineering test that was released for comment earlier this year. The industry expanded on that with a recommended baseline standards that would ensure “the same level of acumen and capability [through remote connection] as if the oversight, inspection, test, or training task or activity was conducted on-premises,” ARSA said.