PART 66 LICENSING, A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD? (C) CHIRP www.chirp.co.uk
Report Text: As a long standing AMEL now sadly reduced to an AML I have received your CHIRP Feedback publication since the start. I often file each issue under B1N on the basis that each issue contains reports in the engineering section about “poor me” they have “put on me”. If you can’t stand the heat get out!! With the current shortage of licensed Engineers there is always somewhere else to go.
However your report, Part 66 Licensing Standards, which I hope is not your last on the issue, has finally made me put finger to the keyboard!! The CAA reply to this feature clearly shows how totally out of touch they are with what is going on in ‘Europe’.
I, like your correspondent, recently converted my BCAR Licence to Part 66. Not only did I end up with limitations, but because I was honest in completing the application I lost type ratings from my conversion of group (Para 7.3) Let’s talk about level playing fields!!
For some time I have been supporting a Licensed Engineer/Pilot in Greece. Previously they had served a call up in the Greek Army air wing. On discharge they were given a Greek National Mechanics Licence. This has now been converted to a Part 66 Licence.
Because their National Licence did not differentiate between Aeroplane and Rotorcraft they were given B1 for both!
Because their National Licence did not differentiate between Piston and Turbine aeroplanes they were given B1 for both!
Because their National Licence did not differentiate between Mechanical Systems and Avionics they were given B2 Avionics!
CHIRP Comment: Achieving standardisation of the Part 66 requirements between EU Member States has been a priority for EASA, and several workshops have been held to review the findings from various EASA Standardisation visits. This alignment of Part 66 standards among the EU Member States has been made more complex due in part to the very differing standards that existed prior to the new legislation. The variation in apprenticeships, academic courses and the existence of engineer licensing requirements was significant, requiring considerable evaluation against the specific requirements of Part 66 to identify areas to be addressed. This extended to the identification of shortfalls in licence syllabi, resulting in partial limitations on the licence. Some States, whilst being compliant for larger aircraft, have not yet fully implemented Part 66 standards for all categories of aircraft, for example in the case of aircraft in the category below 5700kgs, as there is scope to derogate compliance until September 2010.
ALAE Comment: The UK CAA is the best informed NAA in Europe on these issues yet has consistently refused to confront the issue. Unfortunately the UK CAA has also compromised itself by issuing licenses to individuals where serious questions remain unanswered. However if Europe is unable to maintain even a basic level of integrity as far as Engineer’s Licensing is concerned then the level playing field will never materialize.
We intend to raise the issue of European (including UK) regulatory integrity and the level playing field again with the Department for Transport and so your comments and support are most welcome.