...DRVSM, Implementing Part 145...

  • E-Mail this Article
  • View Printable Article
  • Text size:

    • A
    • A
    • A

On perhaps a more easily understood -- but no less frustrating -- level, the looming Jan. 20, 2005, deadline for domestic reduced vertical separation minima (DRVSM) will have repair stations working overtime in 2004. This high activity level will come at the same time industry and the FAA work to implement new, often-delayed Part 145 regulations. The new regs go into effect Jan. 31, 2004. By that time, all certified repair stations should have submitted their repair station and quality-control manuals to their local FSDO, among other deadline-related tasks. Once their new manuals are submitted to the FSDO, the FAA doesn't "approve" them. Instead, the agency will be simply reviewing the manuals to determine if they meet applicable regulations. Still, there are thousands of airplanes on the U.S. registry that are not now RVSM-compliant. These include 20-series Learjets, early Hawkers, JetStars, Westwinds and the like, as well as many turboprops. Especially for the older fuel-guzzling turbojets, how, whether and how much it will cost to obtain RVSM certification and be able to operate in the altitudes from FL290 to FL410 after the deadline is anyone's guess. Many say these costs can easily reach half of the airplane's value, or more. Repair stations will be heavily involved with their customers in trying to develop answers for those potentially expensive questions.