N 8900.59


National Policy

Effective Date: 12/29/08



Cancellation Date: 12/29/09



National Flight Standards Work Program Guidelines Part 129 Special Emphasis Surveillance Requirements

1.      Purpose of This Notice. This notice establishes minimum surveillance requirements for foreign air carriers listed on the Special Emphasis List (SEL) and clarifies the responsibility for SEL surveillance planning, development, and reporting. The provisions of this notice enhance similar provisions in the current release of FAA Order 1800.56, National Flight Standards Work Program Guidelines.

2.      Audience. The primary audience for this notice is Flight Standards District Offices (FSDO) and domestic International Field Offices/Units (domestic IFO/IFU) with geographic surveillance oversight responsibility for air carrier operations conducted under the provisions of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 129. The secondary audience includes Flight Standards branches and divisions in the regions and in headquarters.

3.      Where You Can Find This Notice. Inspectors can access this notice through the Flight Standards Information Management System (FSIMS) at Operators may find this information at:

4.      Background.

a.      In response to a June 4, 1991 Congressional hearing, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) implemented heightened surveillance requirements for certain foreign air carrier operations in the U.S National Airspace System. As a result of these hearings, the Flight Standards Service implemented these requirements each year through the development of a part 129 Special Emphasis List (SEL), and special emphasis provisions outlined in Order 1800.56. The current part 129 SEL may be obtained at the following URL:

b.      The current revision to FAA Order 1800.56 removed the traditional special emphasis requirements, along with the original part 129 SEL surveillance requirement. For the purpose of surveillance planning, development, and reporting, the provisions in this notice enhance those in Order 1800.56J concerning surveillance of part 129 air carriers listed on the SEL.

5.      Action. FSDOs and domestic IFOs/IFUs with geographic surveillance responsibility of foreign air carriers listed on the SEL should plan the following minimum level of surveillance for each carrier listed on the SEL:

a.      Office managers ensure that additional surveillance is performed on air carriers that appear in this list and operate within the office’s geographic area.

b.      Inspectors should conduct at least two additional operations or airworthiness inspections (ramp check, weight and balance control, or records inspection) each month. Program Tracking and Reporting Subsystem records should include the keyword “SEL” (without the quote marks) in the National Use field.

c.       Ramp inspections should include cargo locks, netting, restraints, and tie-down devices for all part 129 cargo operations.

d.      Maintenance and avionics ramp inspections (3627 and 5627) may be conducted for part 129 and part 129, § 129.14 aircraft, if the aircraft is available within the United States or in a foreign part 145 repair station in conjunction with other part 145 activities.

6.      Disposition. We will permanently incorporate the information in this notice to FSIMS before this notice expires. Direct questions concerning this notice to the International Programs and Policy Division, AFS-50 at (202) 385-8070.



Chester D. Dalbey for


James J. Ballough

Director, Flight Standards Service