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ARSA Dispatch
June 3, 2009
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Court Says “Drop Your Pants”
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit recently denied a challenge to the new direct observation drug testing regulations issued by the Department of Transportation (DOT) in June 2008. The court ruled that the rule was neither arbitrary, nor capricious and that despite the intrusive nature of direct observation testing, it did not violate employee’s rights against unlawful searches and seizures under the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The new rule will require employees participating in return-to-duty and follow-up testing to raise their shirt, blouse or dress above the waist and lower clothing and underwear to prove they are not wearing a prosthetic device. After this show is over, an observer must watch the individual actually fill the cup.

The DOT has yet to issue a notice outlining the new rule’s effective date and implementation schedule. In the meantime direct observation for return-to-duty and follow-up testing will continue to be an employer option, rather than mandatory. ARSA will provide its members with more information as it becomes available.

A copy the final rule may be found here.

To read the court’s decision click here.

Support ARSA’s Positive Publicity Campaign
Help ARSA with its public relations initiative to improve the legal, regulatory, and business climate for contract aviation maintenance companies!

Phase One, Step Two to quantify the economic impact of the aviation maintenance industry, nationally and internationally is currently underway, but we need your assistance!

ARSA has contracted with AeroStrategy, an aerospace consulting firm, to:
  • Develop an economic profile of the global MRO industry;
  • Assess the economic impact of US-EU Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreement (which is threatened by
  • the hostile language in the pending FAA reauthorization bill); and
  • Determine the industry’s economic footprint on a state-by-state basis.
The results of the research will be incorporated into messages and materials used during Phase Two of the campaign.

For more details, click here.

Pledge your support here.

What is “Essential Maintenance”
The Federal Aviation Administration issued two draft Notices concerning air carrier essential maintenance providers. Draft Notice 8900.D091 revises operations specification (OpSpec) paragraph D091 to address the change in terminology and meaning from the previously used term “substantial maintenance” to the new term “essential maintenance.” The agency also removed the listing of maintenance providers from the OpSpec paragraph D091. The listing of maintenance providers remains in the manual as required by Title 14 CFR § 121.369(a).

Draft Notice 8900.EMR provides details on the revised surveillance requirements for essential maintenance providers before and after issuance of an OpSpecs paragraph D091.

Comments on both Notices are due June 22, 2009 and may be sent here.

A copy of Draft Notice 8900.D091 may be found here.

Draft Notice 8900.EMR may be found here.

Lost Jet Data 'May Not be Found'
from BBC News
French aviation officials have said they may never find the flight data recorders of Air France Flight AF 447 that was heading from Rio to Paris and went missing over the Atlantic on Monday. The officials promised a thorough investigation but said the circumstances were very difficult. More

Aviation May be Included in Infrastructure Bank
from Aviation International News
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said during a speech at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s 8th Annual Aviation Summit on April 29 that he is open to discussions to include aviation in the Obama Administration’s proposal to create a multibillion-dollar transportation infrastructure bank, but claimed that he had not been approached with the idea. More

CryptoFirewall Designed to Prevent Counterfeiting
from Aviation International News
Parts counterfeiting presents a serious concern for manufacturers, and a California company has designed a technique to protect OEMs and operators. “About two percent of the 26 million parts installed on aircraft worldwide are counterfeit; that’s roughly half a million parts, ranging from hardware to advanced electronics equipment,” Ben Jun, vice president of technology for Crypto-graphy Research, told AIN. More

ARSA Members Getting Members Program
There is no better advertisement than a satisfied customer. Members are the best people to get others to join — we have made it simple for you to help and are providing a monetary incentive for you to do so! Here is a letter for you to use — place it on your letterhead and send it to all your maintenance providers. Information about ARSA to include in your letter along with an application for membership may be found here. Be sure to include your name on the application so that you can obtain the monetary incentive. Now for the rules:
  • For each membership referred by an existing member in good standing, the referring member will receive a credit of 10 percent of the applicant’s dues on its forthcoming member renewal. The maximum credit will be 100 percent of the member’s renewal amount. For example, if you refer a $1500 member, you will receive a credit of $150 towards your next membership renewal.
  • The applicant must clearly indicate on its application the name of the member company that referred it for membership.
  • The applicant must pay its membership dues before credit is applied to the referring member.
Questions? Contact Ronda Wilder in our Membership Dept. at 703 739 9543 or via e-mail at

Electronic Repair Administration Project Launch
The ATA e-Business Program is launching a new industry-wide project to develop a suite of electronic messages (XML) to automate the component repair order process. The scope of the project includes electronic messages for part quotation, work scope, repair purchase order, shipment, teardown report and invoicing. To participate and ensure that your business needs are considered, join the ATA e-Business Program! Learn more at

Check Your Composites
The Federal Aviation Administration issued draft Advisory Circular (AC) 20-107B, Composite Aircraft Structure, for comment. The AC sets forth an acceptable means to show compliance with 14 CFR parts 23, 25, 27 and 29 regarding airworthiness type certification requirements for composite aircraft structures, involving fiber reinforced materials (e.g., carbon and glass fiber reinforced plastics). It also provides guidance on closely related design, manufacturing and maintenance.

Comments are due June 25, 2009 and may be sent to:

A copy of the draft AC may be found here.

Satellite-based Navigation Avionics Could Help Save 10 Billion Gallons of Jet Fuel Each Year
from Military & Aerospace Electronics
The world's aviation authorities are looking into ways of employing precise aircraft navigation avionics to save fuel, reduce engine emissions, and cut aircraft noise by enabling high-performance passenger aircraft not only to use navigation and guidance technology to fly straight paths between airports, but also to fly relatively simple landing patterns upon arrival. More

The Proliferation of Aircraft Maintenance Outsourcing in the United States Provides Reliable and Cost-Effective Services
from Earth Times
Three decades ago, U.S. carriers managed more than 80 percent of their aircraft maintenance in-house; currently, it is less than 20 percent. The increase in aircraft maintenance outsourcing can be attributed to the straitened circumstances in the aerospace industry. More

OEMs and Small Firms Take Maintenance Services Mobile
from Aviation International News
An aircraft on ground (AOG) event is an inconvenience operators want to fix swiftly, and OEMs and independent companies are launching mobile service teams to get airplanes back in the air as soon as possible. More

Final Documents/Your Two Cents
from ARSA
ARSA now keeps a list of Final Documents and Your Two Cents on its Web site By accessing the links (provided in blue) you will find a complete list of items the Association has noted as important to aviation design, production and maintenance activities.

Final Documents: This list includes Federal Register (FR) publications such as proposed and final rules, Advisory Circulars (ACs), Orders, Notices, policy statements and related material of interest to ARSA members. The date shown is the date of FR publication or other official release.

Your Two Cents: Provides you with the opportunity to provide input on rules and guidance that will affect you. Agencies must provide the public with notice and an opportunity for comment before their rules change. Your input matters. Comments should be received before the indicated due date; however, agencies often consider comments they receive before drafting of the final document begins. More

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