CASA proposes changes to cable replacement regulations

The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has proposed changes to an airworthiness directive on cable replacement. (CASA)
The Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has proposed changes to an airworthiness directive on cable replacement. (CASA)

Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has proposed changes to rules for aircraft owners and operators regarding the replacement of control cables after 15 years in service.

The nation’s aviation safety regulator has proposed an amendment to an airworthiness directive issued in early 2015 – AD/GENERAL/87 Primary Flight Control Cable Assembly Retirement – that outlined the mandatory replacement of primary flight control cable assemblies with terminals constructed of SAE-AISI 303 Se or SAE-AISI 304 stainless steel with a total time in service of 15 years or more.

The airworthiness directive was going to take effect from January 1 2018.

However, CASA said in a statement on Tuesday the amendment would put forward an inspection regime instead.

“CASA has now agreed that inspections – if performed in a particular and thorough manner – can satisfactorily address the risks of cracking and failure of control cable assemblies,” the regulator said.

“The repeating inspection regime will require detailed inspection for evidence of corrosion and fraying, which if found, will require cable replacement.

“This will provide relief from the cost and time needed to replace all affected flight control assemblies.”

CASA said the control cable assembly requirements affected about 10,000 Australian aircraft. The public will be able to comment on the proposed amendment to the airworthiness directive when it was released later in May.

“This information is being released by CASA ahead of the proposed airworthiness directive to allow these people and organisations to consider whether to proceed with cable assembly replacement at this time,” CASA said.