VOLUME 4 AIRCRAFT EQUIPMENT AND OPERATIONAL AUTHORIZATIONS
CHAPTER 4 CONFIGURATION DEVIATION LIST (CDL) AND MINIMUM EQUIPMENT LIST (MEL)
Section 1 Configuration Deviation List
4-621 REPORTING SYSTEM(S).
A. Program Tracking and Reporting Subsystem (PTRS). For Title
14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) parts
91 subpart K (part
the PTRS Work Activity Pocket Guide can be downloaded from the following website:
is no PTRS activity code specifically assigned to CDL. The review
of deferred CDL items should be captured through ramp, en route, and record inspection PTRS activity codes:
1) Operations: 1622, 1624, 1627, 1628, 1638, and 1661.
2) Maintenance: 3623, 3627, 3629, and 3634.
3) Avionics: 5627, 5629, and 5634.
B. Safety Assurance System (SAS). For 14 CFR parts
a) System/Subsystem Performance (SP) Data Collection Tool (DCT) 3.3 Flight Planning and Monitoring.
b) Element Performance (EP) and Element Design (ED) DCT 3.3.4 MEL/CDL/NEF Procedures.
a) SP DCT 4.3 Maintenance Operations.
b) EP and ED DCT 4.3.3 MEL/CDL/NEF and Other Deferred Maintenance.
NOTE: Never enter the same data into SAS and PTRS.
A. Purpose. This section establishes the Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA) requirements for oversight of an operator’s use of an FAA-approved CDL as applicable to operations conducted under parts
NOTE: All regulatory references in this section are found in 14 CFR unless otherwise indicated.
B. Scope. This section applies to all parts
of Deviation Authority (LODA) holders utilizing aircraft with an approved CDL.
Air Carriers or Foreign Persons. Part
within this section apply only to part
conducted by a foreign air carrier or foreign person using U.S.-registered aircraft in accordance with part
129.14 (refer to §
129.14 and see
Volume 12, Chapter 2, Section 10 and
Volume 12, Chapter 3, Section 2).
C. Terminology Used in This Section.
1) Operator. Unless otherwise noted, the term “operator” in this
section applies to an aircraft owner or aircraft operator conducting part
a program manager conducting part
a certificate holder conducting part
a LODA holder conducting part
and a foreign air carrier or foreign person conducting operations in accordance with §
section uses the singular term “operator” for simplicity.
2) Appropriate Flight Standards Office. The use of the term “appropriate
Flight Standards office” in this section refers to an FAA certificate management office (CMO),
Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), or certificate-holding district office (CHDO) with oversight responsibilities for the subject certificate holder.
A. Historical. The CDL evolved over several years from what was
commonly known as a “missing parts list,” which was a list of nonstructural
external parts of an airplane that were found missing after flight. The missing parts list is known today as the CDL.
B. Role of the CDL. The CDL plays an important role in the operator’s
ability to safely continue flight operations. It is a list of externally exposed
aircraft parts that may be missing for flight while the aircraft remains Airworthy.
CDLs are developed by aircraft manufacturers, approved by the FAA, and tailored for each model aircraft.
C. Which Aircraft Has a CDL. A CDL is developed for most U.S.-built transport 14 CFR part
and many 14 CFR part
by aircraft manufacturers during the initial certification process. However, they are not a required element for aircraft certification.
The manufacturer makes the decision to develop or not to develop a CDL. If deemed
necessary, the aircraft manufacturer develops a proposed CDL and submits it
to the responsible Aircraft Certification Office (ACO). The ACO reviews, evaluates,
conducts the required testing, and coordinates with the appropriate Aircraft
Evaluation Group (AEG), if needed, to resolve any problems and/or discrepancies. Final evaluation and FAA approval of a CDL is a function of the ACO.
1) U.S.-Manufactured Aircraft. For U.S.-manufactured airplanes, once the CDL is FAA‑approved, it is either:
a) Incorporated into the limitations section of the Airplane Flight Manual (AFM) as an appendix; or
b) Published as a supplement to the AFM.
2) Aircraft Manufactured Outside the United States. For airplanes
manufactured outside the United States, the CDL may be a standalone document
that is part of the Structural Repair Manual (SRM) or other manufacturer’s document.
D. What the Aviation Safety Inspector (ASI) Must Know. For effective
oversight and surveillance of CDL use, the ASI must:
• Be familiar with a CDL and how it is used by an operator;
• Know where to access current FAA-approved CDLs for
specific model aircraft; and
• Monitor the operator for proper application of fuel
and performance penalties, procedures, and/or restrictions and limitations while conducting flight operations utilizing the CDL.
1) Operator Limitations. The operator may make their CDL more
restrictive than the FAA‑approved CDL by increasing fuel and/or performance penalties or adding
additional limitations and/or restrictions, after applying the FAA-approved
data and procedures. Any additional penalties/restrictions must be clearly identified
as operator-specific. Under no circumstances may the operator’s CDL be less restrictive than the FAA-approved CDL.
2) Operator’s Manual. The FAA-approved CDL must be part of the operator’s manual system.
a) A page control system must exist to show that the CDL is current and complete.
b) The maintenance manual must include instructions governing CDL use.
c) The manuals used by flightcrew members and dispatch personnel must include instructions governing CDL use.
d) The operator may reformat the FAA-approved CDL to meet their individual
document standards. However, reformatting must not result in a change of FAA-approved
procedures or a reduction of fuel or performance penalties, or be less restrictive
than the FAA-approved data in any way. An operator may add additional penalties
or increased limitations, but such changes must be clearly identified as operator-specific additions to the FAA-approved CDL.
e) A copy of specific sections of an operator’s FAA-approved CDL, or their
reformatted version, may be attached to their MEL for quick reference by flightcrews, maintenance personnel, and flight operations personnel.
3) ACO Approval. The ACO has final FAA approval of all requests for revisions to an FAA‑approved CDL.
4-624 ASI PROCEDURES. ASIs conduct surveillance of CDL use by an
operator prior to and during flight. Primary areas of concern are the proper
application of fuel and performance penalties, if applicable, and compliance with the procedures, restrictions, and limitations imposed by CDL items.
A. Adequate Operator Policies and Procedures. Prior to conducting surveillance on specific flights, ASIs must ensure that
the operator has adequate policies and procedures in place to ensure that all penalties, limitations, and restrictions associated with a CDL item are properly
addressed. These procedures can be combined with the operator’s approved MEL management program procedures (see
Volume 4, Chapter 4, Section 3 for
information regarding an MEL management program).
B. Prior to Actual Flight. Before a flight takes off, ASIs should
review all penalties, limitations, and restrictions associated with any deferred CDL item(s) applied to the aircraft.
1) Newly Identified Missing CDL Items. For new missing items
identified as CDL items, ASIs must verify that operators accomplish the following:
a) The airplane manufacturer’s or Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) holder’s
FAA‑approved CDL must list relief for the CDL item.
b) If the CDL item is discovered by a maintenance person positioned at the
aircraft, that person notifies the flightcrew and the maintenance organization
(e.g., maintenance control). The maintenance organization or flightcrew notifies
flight operations personnel (dispatch, flight following, and/or other persons
authorized to exercise operational control) in accordance with the aircraft operator’s approved MEL and/or CDL procedures.
c) If the CDL item is discovered by the flightcrew, the flightcrew notifies
the maintenance organization and appropriate flight operations personnel.
d) Each CDL item is entered into the aircraft maintenance logbook.
e) Each CDL item is listed on a placard and affixed in the cockpit in clear view of the flightcrew, per the AFM:
1. Operators may establish a standard procedure for advising flightcrews
and maintenance personnel of an airplane’s status with current CDL and MEL issues and the conditions and limitations that apply.
2. Principal operations inspectors (POI) may allow operators to use
their MEL procedures for addressing an aircraft’s CDL status and limitations.
However, any procedure used must conform to the CDL placarding requirements found in the AFM.
f) Fuel and performance penalties, limitations, and restrictions associated
with each CDL item are calculated and entered in the appropriate flight documentation
(e.g., dispatch, flight release, flight plan). If flight documentation has been
issued prior to the application of the CDL item, ASIs must ensure that fuel
and performance planning are recalculated and flight levels are adjusted in accordance with the CDL item, if applicable. Operators conducting part
are required to issue a new or amended dispatch or flight release to include these penalties.
2) Open CDL Items. If a CDL item remains applied to an aircraft
conducting a series of flights, ASIs should monitor that the flightcrew, maintenance,
and flight operations personnel are aware of the item for each flight, and continually comply with steps listed in subparagraphs 4-624B1)d), e), and f).
C. During Flight. ASIs should verify that the aircraft continues
to be operated in accordance with the fuel and performance penalties, procedures,
and/or restrictions and limitations specified in the AFM, as amended by the CDL.
4-625 TASK OUTCOMES.
NOTE: See Volume 14, Compliance and Enforcement, for the Flight Standards
Compliance Philosophy and specific requirements associated with it.
A. Unsafe Operation. ASIs must immediately bring any condition
determined to be unsafe to the attention of the flightcrew.
B. Discrepancies. Any discrepancies or deficiencies associated
with the application of a CDL must be rectified with the flightcrew either when
found or upon debrief, as appropriate. If issue resolution cannot be attained
through discussions with the flightcrew, ASIs should discuss the discrepancies
with the assigned POI or Front Line Manager (FLM) at the appropriate Flight Standards office.
4-626 FUTURE ACTIVITIES.
A. Surveillance. Principal inspectors (PI) and ASIs must ensure
through regular surveillance that operators consistently apply the CDL policies and procedures.
B. Enforcement. A CDL is an FAA-approved document and is typically
part of an AFM and/or MEL management program. All penalties, limitations, and
restrictions imposed by a CDL must be complied with. If an ASI determines that
an operator is not complying with the requirements of a CDL, the ASI is responsible for pursuing the required compliance or enforcement activity.
C. Revisions. The ACO must approve all revisions to an FAA-approved CDL.
1) ASIs and PIs are not authorized to approve operator requests for CDL revisions.
2) ASIs and PIs may assist the operator’s efforts in coordinating
with the ACO. However, it is the operator’s responsibility to work with the aircraft manufacturer and ACO to achieve FAA-approved CDL revisions.
3) An Airworthiness Directive (AD) and/or an alternative method
of compliance (AMOC) could affect a CDL. For example, an AD exists for an EMB-145
aircraft which requires an item to be removed from the CDL. The ACO may grant
an AMOC to the operator that allows them to keep the item in the CDL without going through a revision process.
RESERVED. Paragraphs 4-627 through 4-641.