Where can I obtain information about Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOC) to ADs?
Can EASA provide the service information referenced in an AD?
In principle, EASA does not provide service information as it contains proprietary information owned by the approval holder of the product, part or appliance to which the AD applies. Please contact the appropriate owner of such information, e.g. the Design Approval Holder, whose contact details can be found in the relevant AD. In exceptional cases, with the consent of the approval holder, EASA may make service information available as an attachment to the record of the AD.
How can I identify an AD as being a State of Design AD?
In principle, an AD is a State of Design AD when the authority that issues the AD is, on the date of issuance of that AD, the State of Design authority for the products, parts or appliances (or STC modification) to which the AD applies. The Type Certificates of some products have been known to move from one State of Design to another in the recent past, e.g. the Bell 206 and 222 helicopter types moving to Bell Helicopter Textron Canada, from the USA to Canada; the British Aerospace 125 business jet type design was sold to Raytheon (now Hawker Beechcraft Corp.), moving from the UK to the USA; and APEX sold the R 2000 type design to Alpha Aviation, moving the State of Design (responsibilities) from France to New Zealand.
When operating a product for which France is the State of Design, e.g. an Airbus aeroplane, or a SAFRAN helicopter engine (formerly known as Turboméca), the applicable ADs are those issued (or approved) by EASA and, previously, ADs issued by DGAC France.
When operating a product for which the USA is the State of Design, e.g. a Boeing aeroplane, or a General Electric engine, the applicable ADs are those issued by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
When operating a Bell 206 helicopter, the applicable ADs are those issued by the FAA before 14 September 1995, and those issued by Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA) after that Type Certificate transfer date. The TCDS EASA.IM.R.512 contains lists (for each Model) of valid pre-transfer FAA ADs.
Am I required to comply with ADs published on the EASA website?
The answer to this question depends on where (in which country) the aircraft is registered, or on the specific agreement existing between the Authority of the State of Registry and the State of the affected operator. In principle, the regulations of the State of Registry of an aircraft determine which ADs apply to that aircraft (including the engine, propeller, parts and appliances). In nearly all cases, ICAO Annex 8, Chapter 4 guidelines are applied, which means that the State of Design ADs (see definition above) apply.
Where can I find a State of Design AD issued before 28 September 2003 (start date of EASA) if it is not in the Safety Publications Tool?
All ADs issued by the State of Design (SoD) Authorities before 28 September 2003 should be retrieved from the relevant SoD websites. Please consult the list of Useful links on the EASA Airworthiness Directives page.
SoD ADs issued before 28 September 2003 are progressively uploaded to the EASA Safety Publications Tool by the Safety Information Section. Once this upload is finished, an announcement will be made on the EASA Airworthiness Directives webpage.
What are the applicable ADs in EASA Member States (European Union and some associated countries) for a specific product, part or appliance?
ADs applicable to an EASA approved design (products, parts or appliances) are those ADs which have been issued or adopted by the Agency by way of:
- ADs issued by the Agency through Agency decisions,
- ADs issued by Foreign State of Design Authorities (Non-EASA Member States) and adopted by the Agency by way of:
- for ADs issued before 28 September 2003 (start date of EASA):
Commission Regulation (EU) No 748/2012, Article 3, Paragraph 1 (a) (iii)
(ADs issued by the State of Design for products, parts and appliances);
- for ADs issued after 28 September 2003 (start date of EASA):
ED Decision 02/2003 on the implementation of airworthiness directives for products, parts and appliances designed in third countries.
- for ADs issued before 28 September 2003 (start date of EASA):
Note: One-time actions (inspection, repair, modification, etc.) accomplished before 28 September 2003, based on (i.e. required by) an AD issued by an EASA State of Registry authority, in deviation from a State of Design AD, remain ‘valid’ in the sense that such actions constitute compliance with the State of Design AD for the same subject. Repetitive actions, previously required by an AD issued by an EASA State of Registry authority, must be continued after 28 September 2003 as required by the State of Design AD for the same subject. Each AD issued before 28 September 2003 by an EASA State of Registry authority, in the absence of a State of Design AD (also identified as ‘additional’ AD), is no longer valid from 28 September 2003 (i.e. cannot be enforced anymore).
Are Foreign State of Design (non-EASA Member States) ADs that are not available in the Safety Publishing Tool applicable in Europe?
Commission Regulation (EU) No 748/2012, Article 3, paragraph 1 (a) (iii) specifies that “the applicable airworthiness directives were those of the State of design”.
This means that all ADs issued by the State of Design before 28 September 2003 (start date of EASA), either applicable to European or non-European products (i.e. aircraft, engines, propellers), parts or appliances (or STC modifications), have been adopted by EASA under that Regulation.
As a result, all ADs issued by the State of Design authority for the affected product(s), part(s) or appliance(s) are valid in Europe, unless EASA has issued a different decision.
Commission Regulation (EU) No 1321/2014, M.A.301, paragraph 5 (i) requires that the “aircraft continuing airworthiness […] shall be ensured by […] the accomplishment of any applicable airworthiness directive”, as identified by Regulation (EU) 748/2012.
All Foreign State of Design ADs issued after 28 September 2003 have been (and still are) ‘automatically’ adopted by EASA under the provisions of EASA Executive Director’s ED Decision 02/2003. This decision implies that any AD issued by the State of Design authority for the products, parts or appliances (or STC modification) to which that AD applies, becomes valid in Europe upon the day that AD becomes effective, unless the Agency issues a different decision (e.g. deviating AD, or statement of non-adoption) before that AD becomes effective. This decision applies to all State of Design ADs, not only those issued by the FAA.
Can the information provided on EASA's FAQ be considered as legally binding?
EASA is not the competent authority to interpret EU Law. The responsibility to interpret EU Law rests with the judicial system, and ultimately with the European Court of Justice. EASA cannot even provide an 'authentic interpretation' (which is an official interpretation of a statute issued by the statute's legislator). Therefore any information included in these FAQs shall only be considered as EASA's understanding on a specific matter, and cannot be considered in any way as legally binding.
What are the applicable ‘State of Design’ ADs for CFM International (CFM56, LEAP-1) engines?
Since CFM International engines (CFM56, and now also LEAP-1 engines) are jointly designed and manufactured by General Electric in the US and by SNECMA (now SAFRAN Aircraft Engines) in France, the situation is more complex than for other type designs. The FAA and EASA are joint State of Design authorities, both publish ADs, but do not adopt the other party’s ADs. FAA and EASA concluded a working arrangement, formalising the situation described above (in particular, see section 4.1.3).
Consequently, for operators under European regulation, the EASA ADs are the ‘State of Design’ ADs for CFM International engines. FAA ADs applicable to CFM International engines are not eligible for adoption in the EU system, unless EASA determines otherwise.
EASA can only consider adoption of FAA CFM International ADs in cases where the responsible design (change) approval holder is not CFM International, or where the unsafe condition was due to maintenance errors, e.g. FAA AD 2016-14-10 for P&W STC-modified engines; and AD 2009-11-02 for improper repair by PTLLC. In such cases, EASA has adopted these ADs and has informed EASA Member States to ensure operators are aware. The record in the EASA SP Tool provides the justification for EASA adoption of such FAA AD, recognised as ‘State of Design’ AD, not for the engine type design, but for the US-designed and FAA-certified STC, or the US-designed and FAA-certified repair, etc.
For non-EU States of Registry that have validated CFM International engine designs, it is the State of Registry (ICAO Annex 8, Chapter 4) that decides which are the applicable ADs – those issued by the FAA, or by EASA. Preferably, to avoid operator confusion, each State of Registry should determine which ADs they consistently (not on a case-by-case basis) adopt, either to follow FAA ADs, or EASA ADs.
Unfortunately, due to the differing EASA and FAA systems for creating ADs, there are cases where two corresponding ADs do not have identical requirements, as a result of which, compliance with an FAA AD may not be equal to compliance with the corresponding EASA AD, and vice versa. FAA and EASA are well aware that some operators face difficulties as they are sometimes expected to demonstrate compliance with both FAA and EASA CFM International ADs (e.g. aircraft/engines owned by a leasing company, or stipulated in an insurance contract). Unfortunately, conflicts can only be resolved by agreement from the State of Registry of the affected aircraft at the time compliance demonstration is warranted.