VOLUME 4 AIRCRAFT equipment and operational authorizations
CHAPTER 4 MINIMUM EQUIPMENT LISTS (MEL) AND CONFIGURATION DEVIATION
Section 7 MEL Approval Process for 14 CFR
GENERAL. This section contains specific direction, guidance, and procedures
to be used by aviation safety inspectors (ASI) when evaluating and approving
MELs. The operator’s MEL is developed by the operator from the appropriate Master
Minimum Equipment List (MMEL), then approved by the Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA). The FAA approval process for an MEL follows the general process for approval
or acceptance described in
Volume 4, Chapter 4, Section 6. This section contains an expansion of the
FAA approval process for the MEL.
MEL ACCEPTABILITY. The general criteria for MEL acceptability are as follows:
Equally or More Restrictive. The operator’s MEL must not be less restrictive
than the MMEL, Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR), the operations
specifications/ management specifications (OpSpecs/MSpecs), the Approved Flight
Manual (AFM) limitations, certification maintenance procedures, or Airworthiness
Appropriate. The MEL must be appropriate to the individual aircraft make
Specific. The operator’s operations (“O”) and maintenance (“M”) procedures
must be specific to the aircraft and the operations conducted.
Applicability. An MEL should be applicable for the regulation under which
the operator is certificated.
INITIAL PHASE OF MEL APPROVAL. In this phase of the MEL approval process,
the operator should consult with the principal operations inspector (POI) regarding
requirements for either developing an MEL or for revising an existing MEL. The
POI will consult with and seek the participation of the principal maintenance
inspector (PMI) and the principal avionics inspector (PAI) during the entire
approval process. During the review of the “O” and “M” procedures, the POI,
PMI, and PAI may consult with the Flight Operations Evaluations Board (FOEB)
chairman as necessary concerning specific procedures. When the FOEB chairman
determines that additional engineering support is necessary, the FOEB chairman
will contact the appropriate Aircraft Certification Office (ACO) and provide
that information to the POI.
Operator Familiarization. In phase one of the MEL approval process, the
POI should determine the scope of the task, based on the operator’s experience
with MELs. POIs should adapt the discussion to fit the operator’s needs and
experience, and should provide advice and guidance to the operator as necessary.
POIs must clearly explain to the operator that MEL document preparation is solely
the operator’s responsibility.
Required Document Submittal. POIs should advise the operator that, for an
MEL to be approved, they must submit the following documents:
· The proposed MEL
or MEL changes;
“O” and “M” procedures, which may be based on the aircraft manufacturer’s recommended
procedures, Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) modifier’s procedures, or equivalent
· A description
of the MEL management program and its procedures as required by OpSpec/MSpec D095, unless an MEL management program is already in place; and
· Any required
guidance material developed by the operator, such as training material, guidance,
and deferral procedures for both maintenance and operations personnel.
NOTE: Several manufacturers have produced manuals of recommended
procedures for operating with inoperative equipment. The Lockheed and McDonnell
Douglas MEL Procedures Manuals, and the Boeing dispatch deviation guide (DDG),
are examples of these manuals. Title 14 CFR parts
27 manufacturers normally do not publish procedures manuals. When a manufacturer’s
recommended procedures exist, operators may use them or may develop alternate
procedures. When contract services are used to develop the operator’s MEL along
with acceptable “O” and “M” procedures, the principal inspectors should review
the “O” and “M” procedures in light of the type of operations being conducted
and should ensure the acceptability of the procedures. The principal inspectors
should ensure that the developed MEL procedures can be adequately implemented
by the operator.
Materials Provided to the Operator. Copies of all current MMELs are accessible
to all interested parties directly from
If the FSDO furnishes the MMEL to the operator on computer disk, the MMEL
should be in standard ASCII (DOS text) format or Microsoft Word. This allows
the operator to use different word processing packages and different types of
computers when editing the document. The POI should provide the operator with
one of the following:
· The MMEL Web site
(www.opspecs.com) for direct access to the MMEL and related information (preferred);
· A computer
disk containing the appropriate MMEL (computer disk to be provided by the operator);
· A hard
copy of the MMEL document and appropriate guidance material (as a last resort).
Document Form. The operator may submit MEL draft documents to the FAA either
on hard copy (printed on paper) or on computer disk, as mutually agreed upon
between the operator and the POI. The operator and the POI should discuss the
techniques that will be used for revising and editing the proposed document.
It is important that the operator understand that when the process is complete,
the final proposed MEL must be submitted on paper unless otherwise approved
by the Administrator.
MEL Format. The MMEL format has been standardized to facilitate the development,
revision, and approval of both master and operator documents. While the master
document contains eight total sections, six of these sections are considered
basic for MEL development and should be included in each operator’s MEL. Refer
to this volume for a detailed list of each MMEL section and whether or not it
should be included in the operator’s MEL.
Generic Single-Engine MMELs. A generic MMEL for single-engine aircraft was
developed and published by the FAA. This MMEL is applicable to all single engine
airplanes and helicopters for which a specific MMEL has not been issued. When
an operator is approved to use this generic MMEL, and a specific MMEL for the
individual aircraft type is subsequently issued, the operator’s MEL must be
revised within the specified time frame to conform to the specific MMEL.
Required Document Submittal. PIs should advise the operator that for an
MEL to be approved, the following documents must be submitted:
1) Current equipment list for each
make, model, series aircraft that is to be included in the MEL or revisions.
2) The proposed MEL or MEL changes.
3) Necessary “O” and “M” procedures,
which may be based on the aircraft manufacturer’s recommended procedures, STC
modifier’s procedures, or equivalent operator procedures.
4) For part
121 purposes, a document or the portions of its §
121.133 required manuals for each group of personnel (§
121.135(b)) that includes its comprehensive program for managing the repair
of items listed in the proposed or revised MEL, as appropriate.
5) For part
121 purposes, any other parts of its manual that includes duties, responsibilities,
authority, policies, procedures, instructions, or information for crewmembers,
ground, maintenance, and management personnel with regard to handling of MEL
items covering §§
6) For part
121 purposes, a description in its §
121.367 required inspection program and its program covering MEL items that
a) The maintenance performed by it,
or by other persons, is performed in accordance with the requirements of their
b) Competent personnel are provided
for the proper performance of that maintenance.
c) Each aircraft released to service
is airworthy and has been properly maintained for their operation.
FINAL PHASE OF MEL APPROVAL PROCESS. The final phase begins when the operator
formally submits the proposed MEL or MEL changes to the POI. The POI should
initially review the operator’s submittal to verify that it is complete, contains
the required elements, as listed in paragraph 4-799 B 6) of this section, and
is detailed enough to permit a thorough evaluation of the MEL.
Unacceptable Submittal. If the POI finds the proposed MEL package to be
incomplete or unacceptable at this time or at any other juncture in the approval
process, the POI should contact the operator. A sample letter is provided in
Figure 4-49. If a mutually acceptable correction cannot be immediately agreed
upon, the entire package must be immediately returned to the operator, or its
representative, along with an explanation of the problems found within the documents.
Acceptable Submittal. If the POI finds the proposed MEL package to be complete
and to contain the required information in an acceptable format, the detailed
analysis begins. During this analysis, the POI should coordinate with the PMI
and the PAI to perform a detailed examination of the proposed MEL document and
other supporting documents and procedures. If the operator does not currently
have an MEL program, its MEL management program must also be reviewed for acceptability.
Inspectors should examine the technical content and quality of the proposed
MEL document and other supporting documents and procedures as follows.
1) Timely Review. POIs should promptly
address all deficiencies and notify the operator of any discrepancies or outstanding
issues. The POI and the operator may informally coordinate by telephone to clarify
minor discrepancies or misunderstandings.
2) Reference Material. Inspectors should
use the MMEL as the primary reference document when reviewing and approving
the MEL. In addition, inspectors should use the following references:
· Related 14 CFR,
advisory circulars (AC),
· MMEL policy
3) Coordination with Technical Groups.
During this phase, the POI may wish to coordinate with the appropriate Aircraft
Evaluation Group (AEG) for guidance. Inspectors should refer to
volume 8, chapter 2, section 2 of this order for information on the technical
guidance available through the AEG.
4) Document Deficiencies. Refer to
paragraph 4-799A of this section.
5) Change in Schedule. If certain MMEL
items must be addressed within a specific time frame, the POI should notify
the operator of this requirement as soon as possible. If the operator is unable
to meet these schedule requirements, the POI should negotiate a new schedule
with the operator.
6) MEL Evaluation. Inspectors should
compare the operator’s MEL changes against the corresponding items in the current
MMEL for the specific aircraft type. In addition, inspectors should verify that
the operator’s MEL contains the following required items:
a) Cover Page (Optional). The MEL cover
page contains the operator’s name and the make and model of the aircraft to
which the MEL applies.
b) Table of Contents (Required). The
table of contents contains a list of all of the pages in the MEL by title and
the corresponding page identification (usually a page number).
c) Log of Revisions (Required). The
log contains the revision identification (usually a number) and date of the
revision. It may also contain a list of the revised pages, a block for the initials
of the person posting the change, and additional enhancements for use by the
d) Preamble and Definitions (Required).
The standard MMEL preamble and definitions section must be reproduced word-for-word
in each MEL, without modification, except as specified in Flight Standards Policy
Letters 25, 34, and 70.
e) Control Page (Required). The control
page is used for keeping track of the status of the MEL and includes a record
of the revision status or the date of each page of the operator’s MEL. It may
also be used as a means of conveying FAA approval of the MEL.
Contents. At a minimum, the control page must contain the following:
· The operator’s
· A listing
of all of the pages in the MEL (including the date of each page and its number
or revision number);
MMEL revision number on which the MEL is based; and.
· A signature
block containing space for signature of the POI (only if this page is used as
a means of conveying FAA approval of the MEL).
Contents. The operator may include additional information on the control page
to provide flexibility and additional approval functions.
of Change Page (Optional). This page contains a synopsis of the changes made
by the operator in each revision.
f) Additional Items. The operator may
include additional information sections in excess of the six FAA sections.
7) Individual Air Transport Association
of America (ATA) System Page Evaluation. These pages contain a list of individual
items of equipment in the aircraft together with provisions for the operation
of the aircraft when the items are inoperative. The reviewing inspector should
examine the individual ATA system pages, ensuring that the MEL is at least as
restrictive as the MMEL and that operator’s procedures are adequate and appropriate.
The inspector should also examine the material contained on these pages for
conflict with 14 CFR, with the AFM emergency procedures and limitations, and
with the operator’s OpSpecs/MSpecs. The following elements are included:
a) The ATA Numbering System. Operators
should use the standard ATA numbering system, similar to the manner used in
the MMEL, for numbering individual pages in this section. An example of this
numbering system would be the communications page; the first page would be 23-1;
the second page would be 23-2.
b) Individual Items of Equipment. The
MMEL contains listed items of installed equipment that may be inoperative.
1. MMEL Items
Not Listed on the Operator’s MEL. If items listed on the MMEL are not listed
on the MEL there is no relief.
2. MMEL Items
Listed on the Operator’s MEL. Each piece of equipment that is installed on the
aircraft and that is contained in the MMEL, for which the operator seeks relief
and that is appropriate for its operation, should be listed on the appropriate
page of the operator’s MEL within the associated ATA system. The operator may
be more restrictive than permitted by the MMEL by not listing certain items
in its MEL. Each item title on the operator’s MEL will generally be entered
exactly as it is shown on the MMEL. Exceptions include the following:
a. When the MMEL
uses a generic term to address equipment that serves a similar function but
various operators use different names for that equipment; or
b. When the MMEL
lists functions rather than individual pieces of equipment within that category
(Examples include “Navigation Equipment” or “Communications Equipment.” In such
cases, the MEL must contain a list of the individual equipment or systems within
that category that are actually installed on the aircraft, such as “VHF Communications
Transceivers.” When items of this type consist of several components of a system,
the item may be listed as a complete system, such as “VOR Navigation System,”
consisting of a VOR navigation receiver and its associated indicator. The inspector
should ensure that the operator has not listed inappropriate items or items
that are listed individually elsewhere in the MMEL. However, the POI is authorized
to approve generic MMEL relief for navigation or communication equipment that
is appropriate such as instrument landing system (ILS), VHF omni‑directional
range station (VOR), very high frequency (VHF), high frequency (HF) and global
positioning system (GPS).)
Listed on the MMEL but Not Installed on the Operator’s Aircraft. The POI may
follow several acceptable methods of dealing with an item of equipment being
listed on the MMEL but not installed on the operator’s aircraft. One method
is to simply omit the item from the MEL altogether, renumbering individual items
within an ATA category as necessary to provide proper continuity. (It should
be noted that individual item numbers on a page are not necessarily ATA code
numbers, but are simply sequential item numbers within an ATA category.) Another
method is to list the item as shown on the MMEL, and to show the Number Installed
as zero. In this case, the “Number Required for Dispatch” would also be zero,
and the remark “Not Installed” may be noted under “Remarks and Exceptions”;
repair category designators should be omitted.
Asterisk Symbol (***). The triple asterisk symbol is used in an MMEL to indicate
that an item is not installed on some models of the aircraft. Operators should
not produce or use this symbol in the MEL.
Category. Each item of equipment listed in the operator’s MEL, except for Administrative
Control Items and Passenger Convenience Items, must include the repair category
designator for that item as shown on the MMEL. These designators, categorized
as “A,” “B,” “C,” or “D,” indicate the maximum time that an item may remain
inoperative before repair is made. The actual repair categories corresponding
to these letters are provided in the “Notes and Definitions” section of the
MMEL. The operator may choose to adopt a more restrictive repair category than
the one shown on the MMEL, but may not relax the requirement. Components or
subsystems of items categorized in the MMEL, such as items of communications
or navigation equipment that are not listed individually in the MMEL, must retain
the repair category shown on the MMEL when listed as separate items on the MEL.
Convenience Items. Passenger convenience items relate to the convenience, comfort,
and entertainment of passengers and must never affect the airworthiness of the
aircraft. These items do not carry a specific repair category; however, the
operator should make repairs to convenience items within a reasonable time frame.
Normally, the operator lists these items individually in ATA chapters 25 and
38. Passenger convenience items may be included elsewhere in the MEL if clearly
identified as passenger convenience items. POIs should review the proposed MEL
to decide which passenger convenience items are components of an item appearing
in the MMEL. When listing passenger convenience items on the MEL, the operator
must list each item for which the operator wishes relief. The operator may make
a list of passenger convenience items that, once it is acceptable to the POI,
is held at the certificate-holding district office (CHDO). Passenger convenience
items also apply to cargo airplanes, as appropriate.
Control Items. “Administrative control item” means an item listed by the operator
in the MEL for tracking and informational purposes. It may be added to an operator’s
MEL by approval of the POI, provided no relief is granted, or provided conditions
and limitations are contained in an approved document (such as Structural Repair
Manual or AD). If relief other than that granted by an approved document is
sought for an administrative control item, the operator must submit a request
to the Administrator. If the request results in review and approval by the FOEB,
the item becomes an MMEL item rather than an administrative control item. Examples
of items that could be considered administrative control items are cockpit procedure
cards, medical kits, and life vests. These items should appear in the appropriate
ATA chapter and would not have a repair category. When the operator chooses
this course of action, the POI must examine each proposed administrative control
item on the operator’s proposed MEL to ensure that the following conditions
· No item is included
as an administrative control item if it is included elsewhere in the MMEL;
items are not included as a subsystem of items listed in the MMEL; and
items are not granted relief in the MEL unless the release conditions or limitations
are contained in another approved document.
of Items Installed. The MEL will normally contain the actual number of items
of particular equipment installed on the aircraft. This number may be either
greater or less than the number shown on the MMEL. The MMEL shows the number
of items installed as the number of those items normally installed on a particular
aircraft type. Individual aircraft operated by an operator may have a different
number of items. Frequently the MMEL shows a dash in the “Number Installed”
column. This dash indicates that a variable quantity of these items is generally
installed on the aircraft. If the operator has an MEL for a single aircraft
or identical aircraft, the actual number of these items on the particular aircraft
must be listed in the MEL. If the operator has an MEL for multiple aircraft,
and the equipment is not installed on all aircraft or there is a variable quantity
between aircraft, and the operator’s MEL will not reference specific aircraft
identifications; the “Number Installed” column may contain a dash.
of Items Required for Dispatch. Normally, the number of items required for dispatch
is determined by the FOEB and may be modified in the MEL in only two cases:
· When the item
is not installed on the aircraft, in which case a zero may be shown as the number
required for dispatch; and
· When the
item is shown in the MMEL as being a variable number required for dispatch.
NOTE: In this case of the second bullet above, the reviewing
inspector should ascertain that the operator has made a determination as to
the number required for dispatch. There can be several factors that establish
this number. In some cases, it is determined by a reference to specific requirements
listed in the “Remarks or Exceptions” column of the MMEL. An example would be
cabin lights. In this case, the MMEL may show a variable number installed while
the “Remarks or Exceptions” column might state that 50 percent of those items
be operable. The number required for dispatch would therefore be 50 percent
of the number of lights determined to be actually installed on the individual
aircraft. Another case where the MMEL may show a variable number required for
dispatch is when the “Remarks or Exceptions” column of the MMEL contains the
statement, “As Required by FAR.” In this case, the number is the minimum quantity
of these items that must be installed for operations under the least restrictive
regulation under which the operator conducts operations. For example, part
135 requires two communications transmitters for operating a small airplane
as a commuter operator under instrument flight rules (IFR). Only one transmitter
is required by part
135 for on-demand charter operations, and none are required for visual flight
rules (VFR) operations when operating outside of controlled airspace. If none
are required, the minimum number of transmitters required for dispatch could
10. “Remarks or Exceptions.” Certain items demand specific relief developed
by the operator as authorized through OpSpecs/MSpecs, area of operation, and
14 CFR. “As required by CFR” is an example of this type of relief.
11. Other Items. Other items in which relief has been specifically written to
reflect actions or restrictions to the operation may be changed only when the
FOEB chairman makes a change to the MMEL. Generally they contain “O” and “M”
procedures in which the operator develops its company procedures to comply with
12. Equipment Required for Emergency Procedures. Each FOEB chairman shall determine
that, in the development of MMELs, relief is not provided to instrument or equipment
systems or components that are required to accomplish emergency procedures.
Each FOEB chairman shall review each current MMEL for which he has responsibility
and amend any proviso that states “As Required By CFR” to include an added provision
that would effectively assure that “no relief is provided to an inoperative
system or component if powered by an emergency bus or equivalent and required
to accomplish an emergency procedure.”
8) Evaluation of Associated Documentation.
The inspector should evaluate the supporting documentation submitted by the
operator to ensure that it is complete and appropriate.
a) The Operator’s Manual. Inspectors
should evaluate the operator’s manual to ensure that it contains adequate guidance
for the operator’s personnel in conducting operations using the MEL. Generally,
if the operator does not presently have an MEL program, the applicable portions
of its manual and other guidance material should be submitted at the time the
MEL is submitted for initial review. When evaluating the operator’s manual,
inspectors should use the guidance in b) below.
b) Documentation Procedures. The procedures
for documenting inoperative equipment and any required maintenance release procedures
should be clear. At a minimum, provisions for recording the following items
should be developed:
· An identification
of the item of equipment involved;
· A description
of the nature of the malfunction;
· An identification
of the person making the entry; and
· The MEL
item number for the equipment involved.
9) Crew Notification. The operator
should establish procedures for advising the pilot in command (PIC) of inoperative
items and required procedures such as affixing placards, alternate operating
procedures, and instructions for the isolation of malfunctions. The PIC and
the operator are both responsible for ensuring that flights are not dispatched
or released until all of the requirements of the “O” procedures and “M” procedures
have been met.
10) Flight Restrictions. The
operator should establish procedures to ensure that dispatch or other operational
control personnel, as well as the flightcrew, are notified of any flight restrictions
required when operating with an item of equipment that is inoperative. These
restrictions may involve maximum altitudes, limitations for the use of ground
facilities, weight limitations, or a number of other factors.
11) Training Program Material.
Inspectors should ensure that the operator’s flight and ground personnel training
programs contain adequate instruction for MEL use.
12) MEL Management Program. The
POI should coordinate closely with both the PMI and the operator on the MEL
management program. Operators must develop an MEL management program as a comprehensive
means of controlling the repair of items listed in the approved MEL. Operators
must include a description of the program in their maintenance manual or other
documents. The MEL management plan must include the following:
· A method for tracking
the date and time of deferral and repair;
procedures for controlling extensions to maximum repair categories;
· A plan
for coordinating parts, maintenance personnel, and aircraft at a specific time
and place for repair;
· A review
of items deferred due to unavailability of parts; and
· The specific
duties and responsibilities of the managers of the MEL management program, listed
by job title.
4-800 TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF RELIEF. This section contains the terms and conditions
of relief granted to an operator for operating the aircraft with items of installed
equipment that are inoperative. The operator must state the terms and conditions
under which operations may be conducted with inoperative items for the operator’s
particular organization and aircraft. The reviewing inspector must address the
following elements of this section:
A. Standard Phraseology. When reviewing the MEL, inspectors should ensure that
the operator generally uses the phraseology used in the MMEL to ensure clarity
and standardization. In some cases modified phraseology is appropriate for the
operator’s specific installation. The POI should refer questions about non-MMEL
phraseology to the FOEB chairman for resolution.
B. “As Required by FAR.” The general term, “As Required by FAR,” applies to
ATA chapters 23 (Communications), 31 (Instruments), 33 (Lights), and 34 (Navigation
Equipment). When this term appears in the “Remarks or Exceptions” section of
an MMEL, the operator’s MEL must contain the specific conditions that apply.
The operator usually must research the applicable regulations in detail to develop
the appropriate provisions that apply to that operator’s particular operations.
An example of a typical distance measuring equipment (DME) remark could read,
“Not required for flights below FL 240.”
NOTE: The operator’s MEL must clearly establish the actual requirement
for its operation when the MMEL stipulates “As Required by FAR.” It is not acceptable
for the MEL to simply refer to the regulation.
C. “O” and
1) “O” and “M” procedures must contain
descriptions of the individual steps necessary to accomplish each process. For
example, if the MMEL contains an “M” symbol with a provision that a valve must
be closed, the operator must include the appropriate procedures to close the
valve as part of the operator’s manual or MEL. The reviewing inspector must
ensure that the procedure addresses the following:
· How the procedure
order of accomplishing the elements of the procedure; and
· The actions
necessary to complete the procedure.
2) Inspectors should consult the Guidelines
for “O” and “M” Procedures of the MMEL when evaluating these procedures. The
section about the Guidelines for “O” and “M” Procedures does not have to be
contained within the operator’s MEL. If the “O” and “M” procedures are not contained
within the MEL, the MEL should include a reference to the location of the procedures.
NOTE: While inspectors should ensure that the procedures are
detailed and explicit, it is not necessary that the operator repeat obvious
requirements of the MEL item, of 14 CFR, or of other established standards.
3) “O” Procedures. The “(O)” symbol
indicates a requirement for a specific operations procedure that must be accomplished
in planning for and/or operating with the listed item inoperative. Normally,
these procedures are accomplished by the flightcrew; however, other personnel
may be qualified and authorized to perform certain functions. The satisfactory
accomplishment of all procedures, regardless of who performs them, is the responsibility
of the operator. Appropriate procedures are required to be published as a part
of the operator’s manual or MEL.
4) “M” Procedures. The “(M)” symbol
indicates a requirement for a specific maintenance procedure which must be accomplished
prior to operation with the listed item inoperative. Normally these procedures
are accomplished by maintenance personnel; however, other personnel may be qualified
and authorized to perform certain functions. Procedures requiring specialized
knowledge or skill, or requiring the use of tools or test equipment should be
accomplished by maintenance personnel. The satisfactory accomplishment of all
maintenance procedures, regardless of who performs them, is the responsibility
of the operator. Appropriate procedures are required to be published as part
of the operator’s manual or MEL.
5) Provisos. The “Remarks and Exceptions”
section of the MMEL generally contains provisos that include specific conditions
under which an item of equipment may be inoperative. These provisos must be
carried over either verbatim into the operator’s MEL or by using equivalent
terminology. Provisos are distinct from “O” and “M” procedures. A procedure
is an action that must be performed. A proviso is a condition that must exist.
For a proviso that operations must be conducted under VFR, an operation under
an IFR flight plan is not permitted, regardless of the weather conditions. When
reference is made to visual meteorological conditions (VMC), operations may
be conducted under an IFR flight plan, but only in VMC.
6) POI Review of “M” and “O” Procedures.
Each POI should review the MEL provisions with their assigned certificate holders
or fractional ownership program. At the discretion of the operator or fractional
ownership program manager, the operator or fractional ownership program manager
may include additional (M) and (O) symbols for a specific item in the MEL based
on their needs. These additional (M) and (O) symbols are based on a determination
made by the operator for dealing with an inoperative item and are in addition
to those required by the MMEL. Any additional (M) and (O) symbols added to the
operator’s or fractional ownership program manager’s MEL will not alter in any
way the definitions of the (M) and (O) symbols as shown in paragraphs 15 and
16 of the “Definitions” section of the current MMEL.
4-801 DEMONSTRATION PHASE. A demonstration phase is normally not required for
an MEL approval. When an operator is developing an MEL in conjunction with original
certification for initial issuance of an operating certificate, or when instituting
service with a new aircraft type, a demonstration of the operator’s ability
to use an MEL may be conducted during any required aircraft proving tests.
4-802 POI APPROVAL OF THE OPERATOR’S MEL. After the POI is satisfied that the
MEL is in full compliance with all applicable requirements, the POI shall sign
the MEL control page or the individual MEL pages to signify approval. If the
operator has not previously been authorized to operate under an MEL, the PMI
should issue OpSpec/MSpec D095 concurrently.
4-803 PROGRAM TRACKING AND REPORTING SUBSYSTEM (PTRS) INPUT. The POI should record
the initial approval of an MEL on FAA Form 8000-36, “PTRS Data Sheet” using
activity code 1321 under “Organizational and Technical Administration.” The
PTRS should be used to track the MEL approval process from phase one through
phase five. After receiving the proposed MEL from the operator, the POI can
open a record for the approval and document each phase of the approval process
in Section IV of the data sheet by making additional comments when required.
Once the MEL is approved, the PTRS is closed with a “C.”
4-804 FINAL STEP. As the final step in the MEL approval process, the POI enters
the operator and MEL information into the MMEL Subsystem as described in
volume 4, chapter 4, section 9.
RESERVED. Paragraphs 4-805 through 4-820.
Figure 4-49, Example of Letter to Operator Denying Approval
New York, NY 11021
Dear Mr. Smith:
This letter is to inform you that the Minimum Equipment
List (MEL) submitted for approval on June 6 is being returned to your office.
A comparison of ABC’s MEL against the current Master Minimum Equipment List
(MMEL) shows that in the following places ABC’s MEL is less restrictive
than the MMEL.
Specifically, these System and Sequence Numbers do
not comply with acceptable procedures:
1. Page 24-1, item 3. DC Loadmeter
2. Page 28-1, item 1. Boost Pumps
3. Page 30-3, item 13. Pitot Heater
Additionally, ABC’s MEL does not include the required
If you have further questions on the MEL approval process,
please feel free to contact me.