Is your aircraft Airworthy?
If you can’t find your Certificate of Airworthiness to see if it is current or expired, you should contact your local CASA office and supply a Statutory Declaration that the Certificate of Airworthiness has been misplaced and requesting a replacement. If there is a current certificate, CASA can issue a copy. If there happens to be no certificate current, you will need to apply for a new one (and your aircraft is grounded).
Another ‘paperwork’ issue that could stop your insurance company from paying a claim is the Logbook Statement. This is another document that aircraft owners often don’t know much about, but it is your responsibility as an owner/operator to ensure it is current and appropriate to your aircraft’s operations and maintenance needs. The logbook statement is found in the front of the aircraft’s logbooks, so you may need to ask your maintenance organisation to send you a copy if they have the logbooks. The things to check are that the ‘operational category’ matches your operation. For example if your aircraft is being used for Charter make sure that not only your maintenance release but also your logbook statement reflects the Charter Category operation. We have seen several cases of aircraft being used for charter when the logbook statement says either private or airwork. If there was an incident with the aircraft this situation could mean a way out for the insurance company, and some serious questions to answer to CASA, and possibly a magistrate. The same goes for Airwork and Private operations. Your logbook statement must also match your maintenance release! Another one to check is the ‘aircraft equipment’ box. Whether it is IFR or VFR (day) or VFR (night) you need to ensure the aircraft has all the required equipment for those operations (see CAO 20.18) and it must all be working. The box ticked here must also match your maintenance release. The main purpose of the Logbook Statement is to describe how the aircraft is to be maintained. It needs to identify the aircraft’s maintenance program and note the maintenance release inspection. It is the Certificate of Registration holder’s responsibility to ensure that there is a maintenance program for the aircraft and the program ensures adequate maintenance of all aircraft components fitted to the aircraft. There are far too many variables to be considered for our short newsletter, but CASA has some guidance material that can help with understanding the requirements and options available. Your LAME should also be able to provide some assistance with this. CASA publications to read are:
CAAP 41-2(1) Maintenance programs for class B aircraft
AWB 02-003 The manufacturers maintenance schedule and your aircraft’s maintenance schedule.
The Maintenance Guide for Operators from CASA puts a lot of this information into one easy to read document and is available to download or ask for a printed copy next time you visit Transaero.