Following up on a notice of proposed amendment (NPA) published for comment last year, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued an official regulatory opinion with its plan to adopt regulations requiring certain Part 145 repair stations to have safety management systems (SMS). The rules would apply to maintenance organizations that maintain airliners and turbine business aircraft.
The final rules are slightly revised, based on EASA's consideration of some 2,650 comments submitted in response to the NPA this summer. To limit the impact on small Part 145 facilities, the application of SMS provisions would be commensurate with the size of the organization and the complexity of the operations.
Some respondents, mainly from the U.S. (where repair station SMS is currently applicable only on a voluntary basis), would have liked to see SMS not mandatory and are concerned about its impact on bilateral agreements. The agency expressed disappointment that “A significant number of comments did not address the safety management principles although this was the very essence of this rulemaking project.”
Compliance would be required within one year after the date the final rule is published.