IMPROVING AIRCRAFT SAFETY

A six-month assessment of the adequacy of the Federal Aviation Administration's policies and procedures for certifying the airworthiness of commercial transport aircraft was undertaken. Airworthiness is the aspect of air safety related to the design, manufacture, and maintenance of airplanes and does not embrace such other key safety matters as airlines and flight crew operations or air traffic control, which are also within the province of the FAA. The study involved questions about the efficacy of the nation's system for assuring both the traveling public and domestic and foreign purchasers that American-built aircraft continue to warrant their world-wide reputation for safety, durability, and reliability. The study examined the ways in which the FAA approves the design, fabrication, and production of each new aircraft, as well as the maintenance and continuing airworthiness of each airplane. Concentrating on the large passenger aircraft used by the major commercial airlines, the committee's charter excluded from its study the certification of engines, airplanes operated by commuter airlines, businesses, and individuals, as well as aircraft under 12,500 pounds. The practice of awarding actual certificates for design, production, and airworthiness has resulted in reference to the system as 'certification,' and to aircraft as having been 'certificated.' Because both terms are widely used in practice and in the regulations, they appear throughout the report to describe the FAA's process of assuring the safety of aircraft.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Library of Congress catalog card no. 80-82605. Microfiche copy only.
  • Corporate Authors:

    National Research Council

    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  USA  20001

    Department of Transportation

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  USA  20590
  • Publication Date: 1980-6

Media Info

  • Pagination: 131 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00327748
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Technical Information Service
  • Report/Paper Numbers: ISBN-0-309-03091-9
  • Contract Numbers: DTOS59-80-C-00028
  • Files: NTIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Feb 18 2003 12:00AM