Feb. 24, 2017

Some NBAA members operating under FAR Part 135 have found the regulations surrounding rest and duty to be a point of contention, but operators seeking the FAA’s formal responses to questions about these regulations can now find them online.

The information is available under a searchable link – Clarifying Policy Regarding Flight Time, Duty, and Rest – in the Publications section of the online Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS).

The FAA established the new link in FSIMS “for the benefit of the agency and the public, as well as a means to establish them as national policy.” Flight Standards will group these national policy responses by regulatory Part, 117, 121 and 135.

In announcing the time and duty link, the FAA said there was no required action, but the Flight Standards Service recommends that principal operations inspectors and air safety inspectors with oversight responsibility of Part 121 and 135 operators “inform the certificate holders for whom they are responsible” about its establishment.

NBAA encourages members subject to flight time, duty and rest requirements to investigate the new FSIMS link.

“This is a welcome addition to the Flight Standards Information Management System,” said Brian Koester, NBAA manager of operations. “Not only will it help inform members about the rules and their interpretation of them, it will clarify their impact on members who may not be fully aware of their how the requirements affect their operation.”

In the past, when Part 117, 121 and 135 operators have requested interpretation or clarification of requirements, the way an operator received the FAA’s response depended on the office providing the information. When addressed by the Office of the Chief Counsel, the legal interpretation was available online.

But when the Office of the Chief Counsel forwarded the request to Flight Standards Service for a response, the resulting policy interpretations or clarifications were only provided to the operator that made the request. They were not made a matter of public record.