Technical records are the means to assess the airworthiness status of an aircraft and its components. This Opinion addresses a safety issue linked with a wrong airworthiness assessment of the aircraft status due to incomplete technical records and is additionally related to a safety recommendation (SR) from the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) (ref.: UNKG-2007-091), which recommends that the maintenance and overhaul records must be part of the logbook and retained until the aircraft/engine/propeller/component has been destroyed or permanently removed from service
This Opinion proposes to amend the existing requirements on technical records for assessing the airworthiness status of an aircraft, namely through:
- a reorganisation of the related requirements in Regulation (EU) No 1321/2014;
- the provision of clearer requirements on components;
- the establishment of a consistent record-keeping period; and
- the introduction of various forms of record-keeping (e.g. digital) and commonly used information technology (IT) systems.
The proposed changes are expected to make requirements on technical records clearer, thus facilitating the understanding and implementation thereof; consequently, this will raise the current level of safety and enable a level playing field.
Furthermore, this will be beneficial to both industry and competent authorities (CA), promoting the cross-border transferability of aircraft between different regulatory systems.
Nevertheless, it should be noted that the general aviation (GA) community opposed the amendments initially proposed by the related NPA 2014-04. As a result, this Opinion does not propose any amendments to the forthcoming Part-ML.