FAA Eases Safety Gear Approvals


Following on its successful effort to encourage the use of angle-of-attack indicators in general aviation aircraft by simplifying the approval procedure, the FAA says it will expand its expedited process to include more safety gear. The policy will reduce costs and streamline installation for “non-required safety-enhancing equipment” (NORSEE) in the GA fleet, the FAA said. Examples of NORSEE equipment include traffic advisory systems, terrain awareness and warning systems, attitude indicators, fire-extinguishing systems and autopilot or stability augmentation systems. Gear approved for installation under the NORSEE rules will be listed online at the FAA website.

NORSEE approval under this policy is not an approval for installation on the aircraft, the FAA said — it just makes the equipment eligible for installation on the aircraft. There may be a situation in which installation of the equipment on the aircraft requires modifications that are considered a major change to type design, or major alteration to the aircraft. In these cases, the applicant is required to pursue the appropriate certification path (such as a supplemental type certificate), or field approval process, regardless of the “non-required” designation. More details are posted online in the FAA’s policy statement (PDF).