The UK Civil Aviation Authority is calling for more consultation on the introduction of commercial single engine instrument flight rules (SEIFR) operations, which could again delay the long-awaited regulations.

The move follows a request by the Joint Aviation Authorities to all 16 airworthiness authority representatives to submit their views on the final draft notice of proposed amendment (NPA).

Of key concern to the CAA is the initial distribution of the NPA, in which it says maintenance and reliability issues (Appendix Z) have not been properly addressed. "In fact," it says, "Appendix Z was not written until well after the closing date for the NPA." It claims not all interested parties have been given the opportunity to comment.

"A large number of changes have been made to the text. While each may seem insignificant in isolation, their cumulative effect should be considered," says the CAA.

The CAA's position has been greeted with disdain by UK general aviation operators. "The NPA has not been substantially changed but has been amended to reflect the 367 comments made," says UK Cessna distributor, Bob Crowe. He adds: "It is frustrating for the purchasers, operators, manufacturers and their agents to find that the CAA, while paying lip service to improving safety, seems to be using every delaying tactic possible."

He says that 13 of the 16 airworthiness authorities are in favour of the NPA. While Germany and Italy have raised questions, none has suggested a third NPA be issued. Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland are adopting the draft.

Source: Flight International