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NATA Takes Action to Ensure Continued Use of Pilatus PC-12s in Charter

NATA Takes Action to Ensure Continued Use of Pilatus PC-12s in Charter
NATA Air Charter Operators Town Halls Reveal Critical Industry Challenges

Washington, DC, August 4, 2017 – Today, the National Air Transportation Association (NATA) announced the resolution of a compliance issue stopping air charter operators from adding certain Pilatus PC-12 aircraft to their certificates. Guidance documents published today now offer charter operators a clear pathway to utilizing these aircraft.

At an NATA Air Charter Operators Town Hall earlier this year, a company alerted the association that a local FAA office had denied requests to add to their operating certificate several PC-12 aircraft intended for passenger operations. Because the Pilatus PC-12 is a single-engine aircraft, passenger operations require compliance with certain additional Part 135 regulations, including specific electrical system requirements (14 CFR 135.163(f)).

“NATA launched its nationwide series of town halls to allow us to hear directly from the air charter community about situations that impact their ability to operate successful businesses. In this instance, NATA immediately reached out to FAA headquarters staff to understand and resolve the issue. We discovered that this was not a challenge limited to one company, but rather multiple operators across the country were experiencing the same problem,” stated NATA President Martin H. Hiller.

“There was debate within the FAA over whether and how older model Pilatus PC-12s meet the electrical power requirements applicable to passenger operations under instrument rules in a single-engine aircraft,” added John McGraw, NATA Director of Regulatory Affairs. “After numerous meetings between NATA, FAA and aircraft manufacturing representatives, the impasse surrounding the electrical loads of the PC-12 has been resolved. Today, the FAA has published an information for operators document, InFO 170011, clarifying the process for evaluating certain older PC-12 aircraft for passenger-carrying operations under Part 135. Concurrently, the FAA issued new inspector guidance reflecting the same information and procedures as outlined in the InFO.”

“We appreciate the FAA leadership’s willingness to listen to all perspectives, including that of the air charter community and thank the agency for reaching a decision that all parties find acceptable. Our NATA Air Charter Operators Town Halls continue and I encourage the entire community to participate, situations like this demonstrate their value to the entire industry,” concluded Hiller.

NATA’s upcoming Town Halls take place August 23rd at Global Aviation in Portland, Oregon, and August 24th at King County International Airport in Seattle, Washington. Attendance is free and open to all aviation businesses, email Karissa Uko at kuko@nata.aero to RSVP. Visit www.nata.aero/events for more information.

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The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has been the voice of aviation business for over 75 years. Representing nearly 2,300 aviation businesses, NATA’s member companies provide a broad range of services to general aviation, the airlines and the military and NATA serves as the public policy group representing the interests of aviation businesses before Congress and the federal agencies. For more information about NATA, please visit www.nata.aero, www.twitter.com/nataaero or www.facebook.com/nataaero