Oct. 23, 2019

Meet the Regulators, annually one of the most popular education sessions at NBAA’s Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE), provided attendees with valuable insight on ongoing regulatory initiatives and the inner workings of the FAA.


FAA representatives David Gray, acting deputy director for surveillance services, and James Viola, director of general aviation safety assurance, shared perspectives on the issuance of Letters of Authorization (LOAs) and other operational approvals, agency consistency and workload, and validation of ADS-B installations.

Business aircraft operators continue to face challenges in obtaining LOAs and other approvals.

“It seems the FAA embraces a perspective that would allow an operator to use the aircraft as designed and certified while the agency processes its paperwork,” said Doug Carr, vice president of regulatory and international affairs. “They seem to see value in allowing the operator to do what the aircraft is capable of doing, and pilots are trained to do, before the approval process is complete.”

However, this would not be a full solution for anyone who conducts international operations because many other civil aviation authorities require documentation that only the FAA can satisfy.

Viola also addressed industry concerns regarding Flight Standards District Office consistency and workload, and provided insight into how the FAA is addressing overloaded local field offices.

At the session, FAA officials encouraged operators to validate their ADS-B installations through an FAA request that will look at their ADS-B performance during a recent flight. There is no other way to determine if an installation meets performance requirements and this method ensures no jeopardy and no risk of enforcement action from the FAA. Learn more about ADS-B validation.

“It’s always valuable for us to show the FAA the depth and diversity of business aviation by hosting a session dedicated to regulator engagement,” said Carr. “We always learn a little more and we appreciate the FAA’s efforts to attend these important industry events.”

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