In reference to the abovementioned safety issue, CASA provided the following comment:
While the CAR 42V regulatory requirement currently exists for Registered Operators to ensure maintenance is carried out in accordance with the applicable provisions of the aircraft’s approved maintenance data, CASA agrees that additional information may assist industry understanding of their regulatory obligations, mainly in conjunction with the use of CAR 42B CASA Maintenance Schedule. To this end CASA published a series of Discussion Papers in December last year (2012) setting out a range of options for developing updated continuing airworthiness regulations for all aircraft not used in RPT operations.
The discussion paper covering maintenance programs set out the items for consideration and options for the reform of the maintenance program requirements for non-RPT aircraft to bring the regulations up to date with modern technology and current international practices. Considerations that were addressed in this discussion paper included dealing with instructions for continuing airworthiness; assessment of ICA is considered a necessary continuing airworthiness management requirement for all aircraft that are adequately supported by a type certificate holder or national aviation authority.
The ATSB acknowledges the actions taken by CASA to date and notes its actions regarding regulatory reform in relation to maintenance programs for general aviation operations. However, given the currently unresolved outcomes from the discussion paper, including the circumstances where the CASA maintenance schedule would continue to be used, the ATSB remains concerned that this safety issue may not be adequately addressed and has therefore issued the following recommendation.