Private Aviation Manuals
Aviation Info Tech produces private operations manuals for non-commercial operators of “complex” aeroplanes who in August next year must follow EASA’s requirements
As the prospect of creating a tailored flight operations manual can be overwhelming even from experienced Chief Pilots, we at Aviation Info Tech use our experience to create the manual containing all the information required to safely operate the aircraft.
Our Flight Operations Manuals are continually updated to ensure you have all the information required to safely operate your private aircraft.
If you are based in Europe (or “reside in an EASA State”) or operate an aeroplane which is registered in a non-EASA State (such as one on the N-reg) but is established or resides in Europe, you must submit a “Declaration” to abide by EASA’s requirements.
This applies to aeroplanes:
- With a maximum certificated take-off mass exceeding 5700 kg, or
- Certificated for a maximum passenger seating configuration of more than 19, or
- Certificated for operation with a minimum crew of at least two pilots, or
- Equipped with (a) turbojet engine(s) or more than one turboprop engine
i.e. nearly all private and business jets and turbo props
Few will disagree that EASA’s way of promulgating the rules are difficult to follow – we nostalgically remember the relative simplicity of JAR-Ops and its successor. (EASA’s website and associated support is now improving but it’s still a dog’s dinner)
As a private operator, you will need not only a good grasp of Regulation EU 6/2013 that amends Regulation 216/2008 (the “Basic regulation”) but also Decisions 2014/017 (Part-ORO = Organisation Requirements Operations); Decision 965/2012 (Part-NCC = Non-Commercial Complex) and Decision 2013/020 (Part–SPA = Specific Approval).
It is also a good idea to have a look at Decision 2015/007 (Part-CAT = Commercial Air Transport) – it includes several nuggets useful for private ops.
You will need a management system that includes a Safety Management Systems with an Emergency Response Plan and a Fatigue Management Scheme.
Finally, you will also need a proper MEL; the FAA Part 91 policy of using a Master MEL as an MEL will not be acceptable.
Aviation Info Tech Ltd has been writing manuals for ICAO Annex 6 Part II (the international template for operators of privately operated complex aeroplanes) since 2008. We have the experience needed to successfully follow Europe’s interpretation of this United Nations agency’s requirements.
In essence, apart from registering a company in Bermuda and the continuing airworthiness/maintenance issues which are complied with by using a Continuing Airworthiness Maintenance Organisation (CAMO) that is acceptable to the BCAA, from a Flight Operations perspective there are 5 things you, and in one case your pilots, will need to do:
- Obtain an Article 134 Approval, which requires the production of a General Operations Manual that contains a Fatigue Management Scheme, a Safety Management System and an Emergency Response Plan as well as the usual items you expect to find in a company Ops Manual.
- Obtain an approved International Navigation Manual/Special Rules Airspace Manual for your Navigation Approvals/Operations Specifications. AIT can provide this, in an iPad/EFB-friendly format.
- Pilots must obtain a Bermuda Certificate of Validation to their Commercial or ATP Licence. (No fee is charged by the BCAA)
- Produce a fully tailored MEL for your aeroplane (Just using the MMEL is not acceptable, nor is topping and tailing someone else’s – yours must be tailored to your aeroplane and all “in accordance with regulations” items tuned to the rules and guidance material that apply to UK Overseas Territories operators – the AN(OT)O, OTARs and the BCAA’s “Guide to writing an OTAR compliant MEL”. Aviation Info Tech is a very experienced accepted provider of MELs for the BCAA. (Note that if your aeroplane is based in the EH, the MEL must be no less restrictive than the EASA MMEL)
- Be audited. See below for the details on this.
There are 3 ways to obtain an Article 134 Approval:
- Write a GOM yourself and hope that it will not need too many changes and corrections before is accepted.
- Use an Approved Alternate Provider, like Aviation Info Tech.
- Obtain an IS-BAO Registration granted by the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC)
All the above require that you are audited. The BCAA will audit you about 3 to 6 months after you have gained your Approval; IBAC require an audit before the IS-BAO Registration is awarded.
The most straightforward way is to use Aviation Info Tech Ltd, an “Alternate Provider,” an alternative to IS-BAO. AIT has helped over 40 clients obtain Approvals. Once your pilots have Certificate of Validations for their licences, and you have obtained an International Navigation Manual/Special Rules Airspace Manual (also provided by Aviation Info Tech Ltd) you then inform the BCAA that Aviation Info Tech Ltd has been contracted to write your General Ops Manual. You will then be granted a temporary dispensation to operate without an Article 134 Approval.
See the Cayman Islands for a Private Flight Operations Approval.
The appropriate people to contact in Bermuda are displayed on the Bermuda Civil Aviation Authority’s website.
PS Most of the above info is on the BCAA’s website (and ASSI’s, the organisation that writes their rules and regs) and IBAC’s.
The Cayman Islands
In essence, apart from registering a company in the Cayman Islands and the continuing airworthiness/maintenance issues which are complied with by using a Continuing Airworthiness Maintenance Organisation (CAMO) that is acceptable to the Civil Aviation Authority of the Cayman islands (CAACI), from a Flight Operations perspective there are 5 things you, and in one case your pilots, need to do:
- Obtain a Cayman Island Certificate of Validation to your Commercial or ATP Licence.
- Obtain a Private Flight Operations Approval, which requires the production of a General Operations Manual that contains a Fatigue Management Scheme, a Safety Management System and an Emergency Response Plan as well as the usual items you expect to find in a company Ops Manual.
- Produce a fully tailored MEL for your aeroplane (Just using the MMEL is not acceptable, nor is topping and tailing someone else’s – yours must be tailored to your aeroplane and all “in accordance with regulations” items tuned to the rules and guidance material that apply to UK Overseas Territories operators – the AN(OT)O, OTARs and the CAACI’s “Minimum Equipment List Policy and Procedures Manual”. Aviation Info Tech writes CAACI compliant MELs.
- Be audited. See below for the details on this.
There are 2 ways to obtain a Private Flight Operations Approval:
- Write a GOM yourself and be charged up to US 1,500/day for up to 4 days for the CAACI to review it the first time and at the same rate for the subsequent versions you will need to submit when making the required corrections.
- Obtain an IS-BAO Registration granted by the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC). Fees are listed below.
All the above require that you are audited. IBAC require an audit before the IS-BAO Registration is awarded.
The first step of the IS-BOA Registration process is to purchase the IS-BAO pack which comprises:
- A copy of IS-BAO’s rules and procedures
- A copy of the SMS Toolkit booklet
NOTE: The IS-BAO pack is normally purchased through your national branch of IBAC.
The fee for the IS-BAO pack is US $1,650 (or equivalent local currency) to non-members or US $1,200 for members, and US $12 for a binder. The difference between the two fees is much less than the association’s membership fee, so reasons to join other than financial are needed. For those new to international aviation’s regulations these associations are excellent, if not essential.
To someone well versed in high levels of legislation and compliance, the advantages of joining are less obvious.
Once you receive the pack, please give a copy of the manuals and advisory material to your Safety Officer, who should be responsible for downloading all the ancillary documents that will be available on IBAC’s website, and will be responsible for updating the IS-BAO manual. It is vital that everyone in your team is very familiar with IS-BAO’s rules and procedures. This was strongly emphasised at the recent IS-BAO Auditor’s revalidation course that I attended.
Once the manual is written, (Aviation Info Tech writes IS-BAO & OTAR compliant GOMs) you have to arrange an IS-BAO auditor to visit you. There are no fixed fees – every IS-BAO auditor sets his own. The auditor will send you a detailed questionnaire first. It is vital to ensure that the IS-BAO providers of ops manuals is fully aware of the requirements of the UK Overseas Territories.
Once he is satisfied that you have complied with IBAC’s requirements, in particular having a General Ops Manual, an SMS, a Fatigue Management Scheme and ERP, you will be granted an IS-BAO Registration. Once you have this, “post” it to the CAACI with a copy of your GOM and they will grant you your Private Flight Operations Approval.
Applications for a PFOA are processed via VP-C Online
PS Most of the above info is on the CAACI’s website (and ASSI’s, the organisation that writes their rules and regs) and IBAC’s.