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8900.1 CHG 528

VOLUME 1  GENERAL INSPECTOR GUIDANCE AND INFORMATION

CHAPTER 3  INSPECTOR RESPONSIBILITIES, ADMINISTRATION, ETHICS AND CONDUCT

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Section 5  Flight Standards Inspector Resource Program

1-235    GENERAL. This section provides guidance to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Flight Standards Service (AFS) personnel on the procedures and associated responsibilities with requesting resources under the Flight Standards Inspector Resource Program (FSIRP). This program supports AFS personnel conducting flight program certification and surveillance events, which are core AFS functions. This guidance establishes the policy and procedures for the utilization of the FSIRP resources and identifies the responsible parties associated with an FSIRP request.

1-236    APPLICABILITY. This process must be used during all FSIRP requests. Once a resource inspector has been identified and confirmed, it is the responsibility of the office manager to ensure the work is assigned.

1-237    ADDITIONAL REFERENCE DOCUMENTS (current editions):

    Additional information on the conduct of check and qualification requirements can be found in the applicable sections of this order.

    FAA Order 4040.9, FAA Aircraft Management Program.

1-238    PURPOSE OF THE FSIRP. The FSIRP operates for the benefit of any facility or inspector with a need for a resource inspector to conduct a pilot evaluating, testing, or checking (certification) activity when designees or check pilots are not able to perform the particular function. The Specialty Aircraft Examiner Branch (AFS‑610) may assist an inspector/office in locating a qualified resource inspector when no qualified and/or current inspector is available within the requesting office and they have exhausted efforts to find a resource inspector. AFS-610 also facilitates travel funding for inspector resources conducting certification. Conducting flight program certification and surveillance events is a core AFS function.

NOTE:  The Office of the Director, Flight Standards Service (AFS-1) assigns work through divisions, program offices, and field offices. Any request from AFS-610 for a resource inspector will be considered an assignment of work from AFS-1. Completion of this assignment of work is not optional.

1-239    HIGH-LEVEL OVERVIEW OF FSIRP REQUEST. Figure 1-1, High-Level Overview of FSIRP Request, depicts the key events that take place from the onset of an FSIRP request to the completion of the task. The roles and responsibilities associated with this process flow are explained in detail in the following paragraphs.

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Figure 1-1. High-Level Overview of FSIRP Request

Figure 1-1. High-Level Overview of FSIRP Request

1-240    PARTIES INVOLVED IN FSIRP REQUEST. During an FSIRP request, several parties are involved in order to successfully carry out the request. The parties are:

    The certificate holder making the request,

    The requesting office,

    AFS-610,

    The offices with qualified resource inspectors, and

    The selected resource inspector office.

1-241    DETAILED ACTIONS FOR EACH PARTY INVOLVED IN FSIRP REQUEST.

A.    Requesting Office Actions. The requesting office executes the following actions:

1)    If no resource inspector can be obtained through local, regional, and national coordination efforts, the requesting office submits the request for funding via the Resource Travel online application by clicking the FSIRP link on the AFS-610 website, http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/avs/offices/afs/afs600/afs610/. The FSIRP request must be submitted at least 30 calendar-days in advance.
2)    When a resource inspector is identified by AFS-610, the requesting office and the assigned resource inspector coordinate to schedule the event with the certificate holder.
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B.    AFS-610 Actions. AFS-610 will:

1)    Review the request.
2)    Determine qualification and currency needs.
3)    Identify and review potential resource inspectors based on qualifications and currency requirements. If none are identified, proceed to the letter of authorization (LOA) process.
4)    Solicit office managers who have qualified individuals or other flight program participants.
5)    Evaluate responses from office managers and select a resource inspector based on availability, geographic efficiency, and financial considerations. Efforts will be made to avoid “repetitive” selection when possible.
6)    Identify a resource inspector to conduct the event.
7)    Notify the selected resource inspector, associated office manager, and the requester of the identified resource selection. Notification information will include requesting office, certificate holder contact information, and travel funding details. Other solicited office managers with qualified resource inspectors will be notified that the FSIRP request has been satisfied, in addition to the Administrative Officers (AO) and regional contact.
8)    Close out the FSIRP request upon receipt of completion of the action from the selected resource inspector. Review the resource inspector’s travel voucher information and reconcile the budget.
9)    Track outcomes of requests and reviews metrics, as appropriate.

C.    Offices With Qualified Resource Inspectors Action. The offices with qualified resource inspectors must respond to the FSIRP request within 5 business-days with resource inspector availability and funding needs.

D.    Selected Resource Inspector Office Actions.

1)    Office management assigns work to the resource inspector.
2)    The resource inspector inputs travel authorization information into the electronic travel program.
3)    The resource inspector coordinates with the requesting office and certificate holder and obtains any additional information needed to conduct the event properly.
4)    The resource inspector conducts the event and completes documentation.
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1-242    RESPONSIBILITIES. The following subparagraphs describe the specific responsibilities of the individuals or offices and reinforce what is required of this assignment of work.

A.    Requesting Office Responsibilities.

1)    The requesting aviation safety inspector (ASI) will:
a)    In coordination with office management, determine the need for FSIRP funding if a resource inspector cannot be obtained locally;
b)    Complete the FSIRP Resource Travel online application for an FSIRP request;
c)    Provide resource inspector information as needed to conduct the event (e.g., operator manuals, standard operating procedures (SOP), and special considerations);
d)    Coordinate with the assigned resource inspector and certificate holder to schedule the event and maintain awareness of its progress; and
e)    Coordinate with office management per office policies on the progress of the request.
2)    The requesting office manager will:
a)    Coordinate throughout the process with the requesting ASI; and
b)    Ensure that the requested event is scheduled and closed out within the planned timeframe.

B.    AFS-610 Responsibilities. AFS-610 will:

1)    Evaluate incoming requests and attempt to identify resource inspectors within 7 to 10 business days.
2)    Provide timely notifications to all offices involved in the process;
3)    Issue an LOA, when appropriate;
4)    Issue line of accounting information, when applicable;
5)    Reconcile completed travel vouchers with the FSIRP budget; and
6)    Document completion of the work, as received from the resource inspector.

C.    Responsibilities of Offices With Qualified Resource Inspectors. Qualified resource inspector office manager(s) will:

1)    Determine ASI availability, bearing in mind that providing a qualified ASI to conduct a requested event is an AFS mission objective;
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2)    Respond to FSIRP requests within 5 business-days with the ASI name(s) and required funding, if applicable; and
3)    Provide an email with the resource inspector’s status as “Available,” “Tentatively Available,” or “Unavailable,” as defined in the solicitation email. “Unavailable” responses require justification to AFS-610 with a copy to his or her respective regional Flight Standards division (RFSD) Manager.

NOTE:  It is the responsibility of the individual office manager(s) to use efficient and collaborative business practices where multiple offices are solicited to ensure the consistent performance of all flight check responsibilities.

D.    Responsibilities of Selected Resource Inspector Office.

1)    The office manager of the selected resource inspector will ensure that the requested event is scheduled and closed out within the planned timeframe.
2)    The selected resource inspector will:
a)    After assignment of work, coordinate with the requesting ASI and certificate holder for scheduling;
b)    Obtain necessary certificate-holder-specific information to prepare for the event;
c)    Be prepared to conduct the event as scheduled;
d)    Conduct the event;
e)    Coordinate with the requesting inspector and local management on the outcome of the event, to include appropriate administrative functions;
f)     Communicate via email the closeout of all events to AFS-610; and
g)    Complete the travel voucher, as required.

1-243    GENERAL INFORMATION.

A.    Activities Funded by the FSIRP:

    Initial and recurrent Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) parts 121, 125, and 135 checks;

    Type ratings in most type-rated aircraft, except where a designee is available;

    Initial and recurrent checks for inspectors;

    Part 135 initial proving tests;

    Part 135 validation/navigation testing;

    Part 121 aircraft dispatcher competency checks;

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    Training Center Evaluator (TCE) and Designated Pilot Examiner (DPE) initial and recurrent observations;

    Part 121 pilot-in-command (PIC) Operating Experience (OE) observations;

    Rotorcraft-helicopter initial flight instructor practical tests requiring touchdown autorotations;

    Part 141 Chief and Assistant Chief Instructor checks; and

    Required ASI checks (e.g., post-incident, Title 49 of the United States Code (49 U.S.C.) 44709 reexamination, and new certificate).

B.    Activities Not Funded by the FSIRP.

    Part 121 proving and validation tests;

    Type rating tests in military aircraft, except to observe a DPE/designated Flight Engineer Examiner (FEE);

    Type rating tests in vintage aircraft listed in the National Designated Pilot Examiner Registry (NDPER), except for those aircraft used in part 121, 125, or 135 operations;

    Tests and/or checks within a district or for an operator under the jurisdictional oversight of a certificate-holding district office (CHDO) when a qualified and current flight program participant exists in the requesting facility, regardless of geographic separation; and

    Certification tests outside the United States and its possessions, unless the International Programs and Policy Division (AFS-50) provides prior approval.

1-244    LOA REQUEST PROCESS. Requests received by the FSIRP where no qualified and/or current inspector is available are completed through an LOA. LOAs are issued to the “best qualified” inspector for a one‑time authority to perform a job task. An LOA will not be issued for the sake of convenience to an inspector who is not best qualified when a current/qualified inspector exists, regardless of the geographic location of either the event or the current/qualified inspector.

A.    Determining the Best Qualified Flight Program Participant. AFS-610 uses Flight Activity and Crew Tracking System (FACTS) data to determine the flight program participant who is best qualified. The FSIRP relies on FAA guidance to determine currency and looks at the ratings held by the ASI.

B.    Issuing the LOA to the Best Qualified Flight Program Participant. The following process determines whether AFS-610 will issue an LOA to the best qualified flight program participant in lieu of a qualified and current flight program participant:

1)    AFS-610 receives an Inspector Resource Request through the FSIRP electronic request process.
2)    AFS-610 reviews the resource request to determine flight program participant qualification requirements.
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C.    LOA Limitations. AFS-610 writes the LOA for the specific applicant and includes specific limitations in accordance with FAA guidance:

1)    A flight program participant, to whom AFS-610 issued an LOA, conducts the event from an approved forward observer’s seat, unless circumstances preclude it. In such cases, AFS-610 must give specific permission in the LOA to conduct the event from a required crewmember seat.
2)    AFS-610 only issues an LOA authorizing the conduct of an event from a required crewmember seat to an ASI who meets the appropriate currency requirements of 14 CFR part 61 and the Operators Inspector Qualifications and Currency Requirements Matrix (see Volume 1, Chapter 3, Section 6, Figure 1-2).
3)    AFS-610 sends the LOA electronically to the requesting facility and the facility of the best qualified flight program participant with a copy to his or her facility manager.
4)    AFS-610 maintains a file of all issued LOAs.

RESERVED. Paragraphs 1-245 through 1-259.