FAA honors commitment to AOPA, issues new changes to field approval policy

May 22, 2003

The FAA this week made good on its commitment to AOPA and revised its field approval policy. The change corrects problems caused by a September 2002 policy shift that made it more difficult for aircraft owners to have common modifications made to their aircraft.

FAA inspectors issue field approvals for a major alteration that does not require detailed engineering analysis, such as installing wing-tip strobes, converting generators to alternators, and converting drum to disc brakes.

The FAA's latest revision to the Flight Standards Service Airworthiness Inspector's Handbook 8300.10, known as "Change 16," becomes effective immediately, except in Alaska, where it will be phased in.

It incorporates recommendations by AOPA, others in the general aviation industry, and the FAA inspector workforce to allow owners to obtain field approvals for routine modifications.

"AOPA's goal is to make sure that the FAA's field approval policy allows aircraft owners to have changes made to their aircraft in a timely, cost effective manner," said Melissa K. Bailey, vice president of regulatory and certification policy.

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