Commonwealth Numbered Regulations - Explanatory Statements

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Statutory Rules 2001 No. 34

Issued by the Authority of the Minister for Transport and Regional Services

Civil Aviation Act 1988

Civil Aviation Amendment Regulations 2001 (No. 1)

Subsection 98 (1) of the Civil Aviation Act 1988 (the Act) provides that the Governor-General may make regulations for the purposes of the Act and in relation to the safety of air navigation.

Subsection 9 (1) of the Act specifies that the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has the function of conducting safety regulation of civil air operations in Australian territory by means that include developing and promulgating appropriate, clear and concise safety standards and issuing certificates, licences, registrations and permits.

The Civil Aviation Regulations 1998 (CAR 1998) commenced in October 1998 and deals with the certification and airworthiness requirements for aircraft and parts. As a consequence of the application of CAR 1998, the need for minor amendments to the regulations became apparent to overcome a number of anomalies, to clarify the intent, and to correct some omissions.

Subpart O of Part 21 of CAR 1998 provides for the issue of an Australian Technical Standard Order (ATSO) authorisation for manufacturing of an article which has been ATSO found to meet a specific ~ performance standard. For example, a manufacturer may apply for an ATSO authorisation to manufacture seat belts for use in Australian aircraft. CASA will issue an ATSO which gives the minimum performance standard for the design and manufacturing of seat belts if an ATSO for seat belts is not available. The manufacturer may have an ATSO authorisation if the design of the seat belts meets the ATSO performance standard, and he/she has an adequate quality system for manufacturing seat belts. This authorisation will allow these seat belts to be marked with the ATSO number, and be acceptable for use in Australian aircraft.

The Regulations amend subpart O to:

•       clarify that an ATSO is a minimum performance standard issued by CASA. Each ATSO will have a specific ATSO number to be used for marking articles manufactured under an ATSO authorisation; (Schedule 1, Items 1 and 4);

•       insert provisions which will allow for the issue of an ATSO authorisation for articles which meet a Technical Standard Order (TSO) issued by the FAA. This would eliminate administrative burdens for CASA to issue and amend ATSOs which simply incorporates an FAA TSO It is consistent with other provisions in CAR 1998 where CASA automatically accepts design standards issued by the FAA (Schedule 1, Item 2 ); and

•       insert provisions which will allow Australian manufacturers to obtain an ATSO authorisation for manufacturing articles in accordance with a TSO design approval issued by the FAA for exporting to the USA. (Schedule 1, Item 3).

In practice, the FAA issues a letter of TSO design approval to a non US manufacturer to manufacture articles that meet a TSO standard, following recommendation by the manufacturer's aviation authority. These articles then can be marked with the TSO number, issued with an export certificate of airworthiness, imported to the US and used in US registered aircraft. The amendments will assure this process applies to Australian manufacturers.

In order for CASA or an authorised person to issue an export certificate of airworthiness for these articles, a manufacturing approval is required to ensure that they conform to the TSO standard. The amendments will allow CASA to issue an ATSO authorisation as a manufacturing approval for this purpose.

Details of the amending Regulations are attached.

The Regulations commenced on Gazettal.


Civil Aviation Amendment Regulations 2001 (No. 1)


REGULATION 1 - Name of Regulations

Regulation 1 sets out the name of the regulations as the Civil Aviation Amendment Regulations 2001 (No. 1).

REGULATION 2 - Commencement

Regulation 2 provides that the regulations commence on gazettal.

REGULATION 3 -Amendment of Civil Aviation Regulations 1998

Regulation 3 provides that Schedule 1 amends the Civil Aviation Regulations 1998.

Schedule 1 - Amendments

ITEM 1 - Paragraph 21.601 (2) (a)

Item 1 inserts the words 'issued by CASA' into the definition of an ATSO to clarify that it is a performance standard issued, by CASA.

ITEM 2 - Paragraph 21.601 (2) (b)

Item 2 inserts the definition of a TSO as a Technical Standard Order issued by the FAA.

It amends the existing definition of an ATSO authorisation to provide for the issue of an ATSO authorisation as:

•       a design and production approval for articles which meet a TSO, or ATSO; or

•       a production approval for articles manufactured in accordance with a FAA letter of TSO design approval.

ITEM 3 - After paragraph 21.601 (2) (c)

Item 3 inserts the definition of 'an FAA letter of TSO design approval' as an FAA design approval for an article manufactured outside the United States that has been found to meet a specific TSO in accordance with the procedures of FARs section 21.617.

ITEM 4 - Subregulation 21.601 (3)

Item 4 deletes the definition of 'a minimum performance standard' mentioned in paragraph (2) (a). This term is unnecessary, and gives the wrong impression that an ATSO authorisation can be granted automatically based on a performance standard set out in CAO Parts 103 or 108.

In fact, CASA has to issue a separate ATSO for each acceptable standard so that articles can be marked with the appropriate ATSO marking as required by the regulations. Many standards in CAO Parts 103 and 108 are superseded, and while are still acceptable for existing articles used in Australian aircraft, are not suitable for manufacturing new articles.

ITEM 5 - Subparagraph 21.607 (c) (iv)

Item 5 amends the existing provision for ATSO marking to include TSO marking.

ITEM 6 Dictionary, Part 1, definition of FAA letter of TSO design approval

Item 6 inserts in the dictionary the term 'FAA letter of TSO design approval' as defined in paragraph 21.601 (2) (ca).

ITEM 7 - Dictionary, Part 1, definition of TSO

Item 8 inserts in the dictionary the abbreviation 'TSO' as defined in paragraph 21.601 (2) (ab).

ITEM 8 - Further amendments

Item 8 inserts TSO into the provisions listed in the item to include TSO as an acceptable performance standard.

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