Safety in today’s global aviation market depends to a great extent on international partnerships between aviation regulators. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) fully subscribes to this philosophy, which is why on September 22 the agency updated its long-standing aviation safety agreement with the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
The changes in this agreement enhance the risk-based approach to safety by optimizing reliance on each authority’s expertise in aircraft certification through Revision 6 of the Technical Implementation Procedures (TIP). (PDF) The revision will go into effect six months from the signing date of September 22, 2017.
Typically, the FAA and EASA do not completely duplicate each other’s certification of aircraft products, instead each entity performs a “validation” of certification activities. The new TIP revision will permit increased acceptance of approvals without technical involvement by the authority conducting the validation. In certain cases, the revised TIP also will allow a streamlined validation process to expedite issuance of a type certificate without technical review. These changes give both the FAA and EASA the opportunity to have even greater reliance on the regulatory capabilities and the technical competencies of one another’s aircraft certification systems.
When technical involvement is necessary to validate a product, a work plan will now be required to define the extent of the validating authority’s involvement. This provides a structured approach using program management principles to ensure accountability to the bilateral agreement.
Revision 6 of the TIP contributes directly to the FAA’s overall vision of global leadership by promoting international partnerships to reduce barriers and leads the advancement of aviation safety across geopolitical boundaries.