Independent Inspection Following Critical Maintenance
Sofema Aviation Services (SAS) looks at the Independent Inspection Process.
EASA Has Introduced new procedures & requirements –related to Independent Inspections following a Maintenance Activity.
What is a Critical Maintenance Task ?
Who is responsible for the clearing of the task ?
a) The primary inspector – (Task Sign Off)
b) The Independent Inspector
c) Both together are responsible
Consider the above and our understanding regarding the specific role of the Independent Inspectors
Question – What is an Authorised Person?
Answer the following questions a) to f) for your own organisation!
a) Do you nominated Authorised Persons – If yes how do you control and manage competence?
b) Do you have a procedure to identify the error-capturing methods in your organisation?
c) Where is this procedure?
d) How do you measure the effectiveness of the procedure?
e) Do you have a procedure to identify the critical maintenance tasks, related to your aircraft types to consider all of the recommended sources?
f) How are you training your staff to ensure they understand error-capturing methods, and critical maintenance tasks.
g) Have you documented the contents of an independent inspection – where?
h) Does it also reference software?
i) How do we control task grouping and signing to ensure it is compliant? The organisation should pay particular attention to possible adverse effects of any change to the wiring of the aircraft, even of a change not specifically associated with the fuel tank system.
j) How are we able to demonstrate the above in our organisations?
What Are Critical Maintenance Tasks?
AMC2 145.A.48(b) Refers:
(1) tasks that may affect the control of the aircraft flight path and attitude, such as installation, rigging and adjustments of flight controls;
(2) aircraft stability control systems (autopilot, fuel transfer);
(3) tasks that may affect the propulsive force of the aircraft, including installation of aircraft engines, propellers and rotors; and
(4) overhaul, calibration or rigging of engines, propellers, transmissions and gearboxes.
The Authorizsed Person
The ‘authorised person’ is the person who performs the task or supervises the task and they assume the full responsibility for the completion of the task in accordance with the applicable maintenance data.
The ‘authorised person’ issues the certificate of release to service or signs off the completion of the task after the independent inspection has been carried out satisfactorily.
The work card system used by the organisation should record the identification of both persons and the details of the independent inspection as necessary before the certificate of release to service or sign-off for the completion of the task is issued.
The Independent Qualified Person
The ‘independent qualified person’ is the person who performs the independent inspection and attests the satisfactory completion of the task and that no deficiencies have been found.
The ‘independent qualified person’ does not issue a certificate of release to service, therefore they are not required to hold certification privileges.
What are the Qualification of an Independent Person?
The organisation should have procedures to demonstrate that the ‘independent qualified person’ has been trained and has gained experience in the specific inspection to be performed.
The organisation could consider making use of, for example:
– Staff holding a certifying staff or support staff or sign-off authorisation or equivalent necessary to release or sign off the critical maintenance task;
– Staff holding a certifying staff or support staff or sign-off authorisation or equivalent necessary to release or sign off similar task in a product of similar category and having received specific practical training in the task to be inspected.
What does an Independent Inspection “Consider”?
The independent qualified person should consider the following points independently:
(1) all those parts of the system that have actually been disconnected or disturbed should be inspected for correct assembly and locking;
(2) the system as a whole should be inspected for full and free movement over the complete range;
(3) cables should be tensioned correctly with adequate clearance at secondary stops;
(4) the operation of the control system as a whole should be observed to ensure that the controls are operating in the correct sense;
(5) if different control systems are interconnected so that they affect each other, all the interactions should be checked through the full range of the applicable controls; and
(6) software that is part of the critical maintenance task should be checked, for example: version, compatibility with aircraft configuration.
The certificate of release to service is issued:
After the task has been performed by the ‘authorised person’
The reinspection has been carried out satisfactorily.
The work card system used by the organisation should record the identification and the details of the reinspection before the certificate of release to service for the task is issued.