Avionics News April 2018 - 37

3. Developing and implementing corrective
might no longer comply in six months or a year.
actions to mitigate risks.
3. SAS is often "your homework" - which isn't
Do some of those concepts sound similar to safety
necessarily a bad thing.
management system concepts? They should. Many
Leaders of the FAA, including John Duncan,
SAS and SMS concepts overlap.
executive director of Flight Standards Services,
Here's what we've learned about SAS as its
have said publicly and often that DCTs are inspector
implementation has spread:
homework, not your homework. This hasn't been the
1. Some requirements might surprise you.
experience of most applicants or certificate holders
In explaining SAS, the Federal
I've talked with. In fact, only a
Aviation Administration claims
few certificate holders told me
it is "not a separate safety
their inspectors complete the
standard and does not impose
DCTs, usually by visiting the
THERE DOESN'T
additional requirements on
operator once a month with a
SEEM TO BE ANY
certificate holders." If you are a
couple of checklists at each visit.
WAY TO HIDE
Part 135 operator, you might take
However, completing the DCTs
FROM OR AVOID
exception with that statement. For
yourself isn't necessarily a bad
SAS. IF IT HASN'T
example, the SAS DCTs require
thing. Although the hundreds of
TOUCHED YOUR
Part 135 operators to report to
pages of checklists add to what
PART 121, 135 OR 145
their FSDO within five days any
is your likely overflowing plate
instances of drunken passengers.
of tasks, the exercise can be
ORGANIZATION YET,
There is no correlating Part 135
beneficial.
regulation requiring this report.
First, completing the DCTs gives
(There is, however, a similarly
you an opportunity to revise your
worded requirement in Part 121.)
policies and procedures in order to
While I haven't reviewed every
comply with the DCTs without your
DCT for every peer group, I'm
inspector asking you to do so.
sure you will identify similar quirks in your assigned
Second, if your inspectors complete the checklists,
DCTs.
you might have more frequent FAA visits than in the
The DCTs require a selection of yes, no, or not
past. It seems more convenient to do the DCTs on your
applicable, as to whether your organization complies
schedule rather than making time for more frequent
with each DCT checklist item, and then a reference
inspector meetings.
or comment about how you comply. Unfortunately,
Finally, by completing the DCTs, you tell the
there's only one "right" answer: yes. According to
inspector exactly where in your policies and
Flight Standards Information Management System
procedures the DCT standard is addressed. Although
guidance, "no" may be appropriate but my experience
you will spend some time locating each reference, it
with DCTs says "no" just provides an opportunity for
saves your task-saturated inspectors hours of effort,
improvement of your policies and procedures. "Not
which they will hopefully use to work on some
applicable" basically means not acceptable. While you
other task beneficial to your organization instead of
might be tempted to mark an item that is not clearly
searching through checklists. This is most helpful for
required by regulation "not applicable," that approach
certificate applicants requesting new certificates or
is unlikely to work.
certificate holders requesting complex or significant
2. DCTs can and will change - often.
new authorizations.
The DCTs also change with some regularity. The
manual you write or adapt to comply with DCTs today
Continued on following page

IT WILL
EVENTUALLY.

avionics news

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april

2018

37



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News April 2018

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Avionics News April 2018 - Intro
Avionics News April 2018 - Cover1
Avionics News April 2018 - Cover2
Avionics News April 2018 - No label
Avionics News April 2018 - 2
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Avionics News April 2018 - Cover3
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