Contents


General

  1. What gives FAA the authority to regulate airports?
  2. Why is FAA making changes to the Federal airport certification regulation?
  3. What airports must have an FAA Airport Operating Certificate?
  4. What is required of airports currently certificated under 14 CFR Part 139?
  5. How do air carriers find out the certification status of U.S. airports?
  6. Will revised Part 139 affect air carrier operations?
  7. Does the revised Part 139 require airports that currently hold Airport Operating Certificates to reapply for certificates?
  8. Can airport operators that are currently certificated under Part 139 continue to serve air carrier operations until the revised Part 139 takes effect?
  9. Does the revised Part 139 require that airports that are not currently certificated under Part 139 apply for an Airport Operating Certificate (AOC)?
  10. How does an airport operator that is required under the revised Part 139 to comply with aircraft rescue and fire fighting (ARFF) requirements request an exemption from these requirements?
  11. How does an airport operator obtain Federal financial assistance to help comply with the new requirements of revised Part 139?
  12. Why does Part 139 apply only to airports serving certain air carrier operations and not to airports serving all air carrier operators and all-cargo operators?
  13. Under the revised Part 139, some airport operators are not required to comply with all Part 139 requirements, particularly emergency response requirements. Why doesn't FAA require all airport operators serving applicable air carrier operations to comply fully with the revised Regulation?

  14. Airport Classification


  15. Can a previously certificated Part 139 airport be classified as a Class III airport if it only serves small scheduled air carriers with 10�30 seats or is the Class III certification reserved for those airports not previously certificated?
  16. An airport does not have an AOC but currently has scheduled service by aircraft with 10�30 passenger seats. Can the airport refuse to seek an AOC under the new Part 139?
  17. An airport has an AOC (full or limited) and air carrier service. Can it surrender its AOC?
  18. The airport has a limited AOC under the current Part 139 and has scheduled service with 10�30 seat aircraft. A Class II AOC is required to permit current operations to continue. Can the airport operator elect a Class IV AOC under the new Part 139 to require the commuter service to cease?
  19. The airport has a limited AOC under the current Part 139. There is no scheduled service at a limited-AOC airport, but an air carrier has notified the airport that it intends to begin scheduled service with 10�30 passenger seat aircraft. The service would require a Class II AOC. Can the airport elect to meet the requirements only for a Class IV AOC to keep the commuter air carrier from beginning scheduled service?
  20. A limited-AOC airport with no scheduled air carrier service applies for a Class I AOC under the new Part 139 and is willing to meet all the requirements. Should the FAA designate the airport as Class I as requested?
  21. Does an airport designated as a Class II, III, or IV airport (in accordance with Part 139) need to accommodate an air carrier wishing to serve the airport with aircraft that require the airport to have a Class I AOC?

  22. Federal Funding


  23. Does the $15 million set aside AIP funding for Class III airports apply to previously certificated airports?

  24. Fueling


  25. Do fuel farms not located on airport property serving the airport need to be inspected for fire safety in accordance with Part 139.321? If so, how far away from the airport would this requirement apply?
  26. Do fuel dispensing and storage facilities used for airport ground vehicles and rental cars need to be inspected for fire safety in accordance with Part 139.321?
  27. During quarterly fuel fire safety inspection, can the airport operator restrict its inspection to random sampling of fuel trucks and hydrant carts?
  28. Must a Part 139 airport operator inspect fuel trucks, fueling cabinets, or fuel farms associated with general aviation-use exclusively? What about privately owned fueling operations associated with corporate general aviation?
  29. Must hydrant fueling carts (both stationary and mobile) used by airports with hydrant fuel systems be inspected?
  30. The revised Regulation requires that fuel-line supervisors must have attended a training course in fuel fire safety authorized by the Administrator (see Part 139.321). The Regulation also requires that fuel-line supervisors must receive recurrent instruction at least every 24 months. What exactly does 'recurrent instruction' mean? Does it mean that fuel-line supervisors must attend one of the FAA-recognized courses to receive credit for recurrent instruction, or could the recurrent instruction be accomplished locally?

  31. Applicability


  32. Do the following charters operating aircraft of more than 30 passengers seats qualify as unscheduled air carriers within the purview of 14 CFR Part 139: a sports charter, Department of Corrections prisoner transport, and a VIP Presidential arrival and the associated press planes that follow?

  33. Aircraft Rescue & Fire Fighting (ARFF)


  34. Can the costs associated with increased ARFF coverage be passed along to the air carriers, and if so, how would this be accomplished?
  35. Where can we obtain a list of the approved fire training facilities that include military simulators that can be used to meet the Part 139 live burn requirement?

  36. Airport Emergency Plan


  37. If an airport is required to have water rescue provisions listed in the Airport Certification Manual but does not have sufficient water rescue equipment to accommodate the largest air carrier aircraft operating from the airport, what course of action must the airport operator follow? What determines the appropriate equipment for meeting compliance under the requirements in Part 139.325(c)(f)?

  38. Training


  39. Several sections of the revised Part 139 require initial and annual training for certain airport personnel. Must this training begin immediately after the effective date of the revised rule (June 9, 2004)?
  40. If existing employees are not required to receive initial training after the ACM is approved, does the airport operator have to provide documentation that the such employees have already had initial training prior to the day the ACM was approved?
  41. Are an airport operator�s employees who are escorted by another employee in movement areas and safety areas required to be trained under Part 139.303(c)?
  42. Are airport operators responsible for training individuals that perform duties in movement or safety areas but are not airport employees, such as FAA employees or construction employees?
  43. Are airport operators required under revised Part 139.303 to train contract and emergency personnel who have access to movement areas and safety areas?
  44. Can an airport operator allow tenants to conduct some of the recurrent training now required under the revised Part 139, and if so, what type of audits, checks, or verification will be required?
  45. If individuals who are required to be trained under the revised Regulation received industry training within the past year, such as training programs offered by the American Association of Airport Executives and the FAA, do they have to be re-trained?
  46. Has the FAA developed a particular training curriculum for each subject area specified in revised Part 139.303 or 139.327, or will the training be based on what the airport establishes in the ACM? Can the appropriate Advisory Circulars be used as training reference?

General

Back to Top

1. What is FAA's authority to regulate airports?

The FAA Administrator has the statutory authority under Title 49, United States Code (U.S.C.) � 44706 to -

  • Issue Airport Operating Certificates to airports serving passenger-carrying operations of certain air carriers and
  • Establish minimum safety standards for the operation of those airports.
The FAA uses this authority to issue requirements for the certification and operation of certain land airports through Part 139 of Title14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR Part 139).

Congress limited this statutory authority to those land airports serving passenger operations of air carriers that are conducted with aircraft designed for at least 31 passenger seats. In response to recommendations made by the General Accounting Office (GAO) in 1987 and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) in 1994, the Secretary of Transportation sought authority from Congress to broaden FAA's authority to certificate airports. Congress broadened this authority when it passed the Federal Aviation Reauthorization Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-264), amending 49 U.S.C. 44706. This amendment granted FAA the authority to certificate airports serving scheduled air carrier operations conducted in aircraft with more than 9 passenger seats but less than 31 passenger seats, except in the State of Alaska. There was no change to FAA's existing authority to regulate airports serving air carrier operations using aircraft with more than 30 seats.

General

Back to Top

2. Why is FAA making changes to the Federal airport certification regulation?

14 CFR Part 139 has not been revised since 1987, but industry practices and technology have changed. In 2000, Congress mandated that FAA issue a rule relating to certification of airports serving scheduled passenger air carrier operations conducted in aircraft with 10 to 30 seats (except in the State of Alaska). In response, FAA revised the Regulation to:

  • Address outdated safety requirements,
  • Clarify several existing requirements,
  • Respond to petitions for exemption and rulemaking about emergency response preparedness,
  • Address National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recommendations,
  • Allow regulation of airports serving small air carrier operations, and
  • Revise the existing airport certification process.

General

Back to Top

3. What airports must have an FAA Airport Operating Certificate (AOC)?

Generally, airports in any state of the United States, the District of Columbia, or any territory or possession of the United States serving passenger-carrying operations of an air carrier certificated under 14 CFR Part 121 and 14 CFR Part 380 must hold Airport Operating Certificates if -

The authorizing statute exempts Alaskan airports that serve air carrier aircraft with less than 30 seats from Federal airport certification requirements. To learn more about the certification of Alaskan airports, review Alaskan Airports.

Also, any such airport that either leases from or shares its facility with the U.S. Government, such as the Department of Defense, must obtain a Part 139 Airport Operating Certificate for those portions of a joint-use or shared-use airport that are within the authority of a person serving passenger-carrying operations defined above.

General

Back to Top

4. What is required of airports currently certificated under 14 CFR Part 139?

Airport operators currently certificated under Part 139 are not required to reapply for an Airport Operating Certificate. The FAA will issue new Part 139 Airport Operating Certificates to all current certificate holders, as appropriate. For most current Airport Operating Certificate holders, this will involve updating existing Airport Certification Manuals (ACMs) to incorporate several new elements. The remaining certificate holders may be required to comply with certain requirements for the first time or to extend existing Part 139 services to cover additional air carrier operations. These airport operators who have not received FAA approval for their ACMS may continue to serve air carrier operations as they currently do until the deadlines for submitting new or revised ACMs to FAA, at which time FAA will contact them to discuss whether additional action is needed and to what extent air carrier operations can continue.

General

Back to Top

5. How do air carriers find out the certification status of U.S. airports?

To assist air carriers in determining which U.S. airports have obtained a new or revised Part 139 Airport Operating Certificate, go to the Part 139 Airport Certification Status Table (MS Excel, 127 KB). This table lists Part 139 certificated airports alphabetically by state and provides information on certification status, class, and ARFF Index for each airport. As FAA issues revised or new Airport Operating Certificates, we will update and repost the table. For a summary of Part 121 and 139 changes that affect air carriers, go to Information for Air Carriers Using Part 139 Airports.

General

Back to Top

6. Will revised Part 139 affect air carrier operations?

Initially, the revised Part 139 will not affect air carrier operations. Airport operators may continue to serve air carrier operations as they currently do until the deadline for submitting new or revised Airport Certification Manuals (ACMs) to FAA. After this date, airport operators that have not submitted their ACM for approval will no longer be able to serve applicable air carrier operations. Depending on the action taken by an airport operator, air carrier operations could then be affected. Go to Certification Process for more information on actions airport operators must take to continue to serve air carrier operations covered under Part 139.

Part 139 is mandatory only if the airport operator chooses to serve air carrier operations, even if the airport operator has received Federal assistance (see Title 49, United States Code (U.S.C.) � 44706(f)). Rather than comply with the revised Part 139, some airport operators may decide (typically due to cost or environmental concerns) not to be certificated under Part 139. At such airports, air carriers may not conduct operations specified under Part 139. For more information, go to Information for Air Carriers Using Part 139 Airports.

General

Back to Top

7. Does the revised Part 139 require airports that currently hold Airport Operating Certificates to reapply for certificates?

Operators of currently certificated airports are not required to reapply for a Part 139 Airport Operating Certificate (AOC), but they must revise their Airport Certification Manuals (ACMs) or convert their existing Airport Certification Specifications into an ACM. For more information on submitting a revised ACM and the reissuance of an AOC, go to Certification Process.

General

Back to Top

8. Can airport operators that are currently certificated under Part 139 continue to serve air carrier operations until the revised Part 139 takes effect?

Airport operators may continue to serve air carrier operations as they currently do until the deadlines for submitting new or revised ACMs to FAA. (F or more information on ACM deadlines, go to Compliance Dates.) After these dates, airport operators that have not submitted their ACM for approval will no longer be able to serve applicable air carrier operations. Airport operators that have submitted either a new ACM or an update will be contacted by FAA to determine if additional action is needed and to what extent they can continue to serve air carrier operations until a new certificate is issued. For more information on submitting a revised ACM, go to Certification Process.

General

Back to Top

9. Does the revised Part 139 require that airports that are not currently certificated under Part 139 apply for an Airport Operating Certificate (AOC)?

In certain circumstances, uncertificated airports serving air carrier operations may be required to have an AOC under the revised Part 139 in order to continue to serve such operations. Operators of uncertificated airports that serve scheduled operations of small air carrier aircraft are required under the revised Part 139 to have an AOC. Also, airport operators serving public charters are required under 14 CFR Part 380 to hold a Part 139 AOC.

Operators of airports serving scheduled operations of air carrier aircraft with 9 seats or less or unscheduled operations of air carrier aircraft with less than 31 seats do not need a Part 139 AOC. The FAA does not have the authority to certificated airports serving these types of air carrier operations. Moreover, airport operators can choose not to be certificated under Part 139. Part 139 is mandatory only if the airport operator chooses to serve the air carrier operations covered by the revised Part 139.

General

Back to Top

10. How does an airport operator that is required under the revised Part 139 to comply with aircraft rescue and fire fighting (ARFF) requirements request an exemption from these requirements?

While the revised Part 139 requires all certificated airports to provide some level of ARFF service, FAA has revised the Regulation to implement its statutory authority to provide appropriate exemptions from some or all prescribed ARFF requirements for certain airports. In addition, the revised Part 139 establishes alternative ARFF compliance measures for airports serving only smaller air carrier aircraft (Class III airports) that may be unable to provide the same level of ARFF services required of airports serving large air carrier operations. For more information on requesting an exemption from ARFF requirements, go to Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting.

General

Back to Top

11. How does an airport operator obtain Federal financial assistance to help comply with the new requirements of revised Part 139?

The Airport Improvement Program and the Passenger Facility Charge Program provide millions of dollars each year for airport planning, development, noise reduction, capacity, and other projects. Some of this money may be used to purchase safety equipment needed to comply with Part 139 requirements. For more information on Federal financial assistance available to airport operators, go to Airport Financial Assistance.

For assistance is applying for Federal Airport Improvement Program (AIP) funds, airport operators should contact their local FAA Regional Airports Office.

General

Back to Top

12. Why does Part 139 apply only to airports serving certain air carrier operations and not to airports serving all air carrier operators and all-cargo operators?

In 49 U.S.C. 44706(a), Congress limits FAA's authority to grant airport operating certificates to those airports serving the following passenger air carrier operations:

  • Scheduled passenger-carrying operations conducted in aircraft designed for more than 9 passenger seats, and
  • Unscheduled passenger-carrying operations conducted in aircraft designed for at least 31 passenger seats.

However, the authorizing statute exempts Alaskan airports that serve air carrier aircraft with less than 30 seats from Federal airport certification requirements. To learn more about airports affected by the revised Part 139, go to Airports Affected by the Revised Rule.

Congress would have to amend this authority before FAA could issue a Part 139 Airport Operating Certificate (AOC) based on any other type of air carrier operations or air cargo operations.

Although FAA does not issue AOCs to cover certain air carrier and air cargo operations, such operations already benefit from Part 139 safety measures. At over half of the certificated airports (approximately 340 airports), Part 139 safety measures are applied continuously as air carrier schedules vary so much that it is more convenient and economical to comply with Part 139 requirements at all times. Accordingly, any air carrier or air cargo operations not covered by Part 139 benefit from Part 139 safety measures at these airports.

General

Back to Top

13. Under the revised Part 139, some airport operators are not required to comply with all Part 139 requirements, particularly emergency response requirements. Why doesn't FAA require all airport operators serving applicable air carrier operations to comply fully with the revised Regulation?

Under the revised Part 139, airport operators that serve scheduled operations of large air carrier aircraft are Class I airports. Seventy-two percent of the airports certificated under the revised Part 139 are Class I airports (approximately 435 airports). As these airport operators regularly serve large air carrier operations, they must fully comply with all Part 139 requirements.

The remaining airports to be certificated under the Part 139 (approximately 172 airports) are Class II, III, or IV airports. Air carrier operations in large aircraft are so infrequent at these facilities that their operators are only required to comply with Part 139 in a limited manner. (For more information on specific requirements for each airport class, go to New Airport Classes.) Such airports are typically located in remote communities or support seasonal activities, such as skiing during winter months. Certain safety measures that have proven successful at larger airports may be cost-prohibitive at these smaller facilities.

Further, FAA's new authority to regulate airports serving scheduled operations of small air carrier aircraft requires FAA to identify and consider a reasonable number of regulatory alternatives that are least costly, most cost-effective or the least burdensome but that still provide a comparable level of safety to that attained at other airports certificated under the revised Part 139. In considering possible alternatives in regulating such airports, FAA decided that safety in air transportation could still be achieved if smaller airports were granted relief when an operational requirement proves to be an economic burden. For a detailed explanation of regulatory alternatives considered, go to Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, 65 FR 38661-38665.

Airport Classification

Back to Top

14. Can a previously certificated Part 139 airport be classified as a Class III airport if it only serves small scheduled air carriers with 10�30 seats or is the Class III certification reserved for those airports not previously certificated?

Class III classification is not reserved only for those airports not previously certificated. The FAA will classify any airport that serves scheduled operations of small air carrier aircraft and no other applicable air carriers as a Class III airport. This could include an airport that serves only scheduled operations of small air carrier aircraft and that will be certificated under Part 139 for the first time, as well as a currently certificated airport that no longer serves large air carrier aircraft.

Airport Classification

Back to Top

15. An airport does not have an AOC but currently has scheduled service by aircraft with 10-30 passenger seats. Can the airport refuse to seek an AOC under the new Part 139?

Yes. Under 49 U.S.C. � 44706(f), the airport is not required to apply for an AOC. The commuter operator will be required to cease scheduled operations at the date specified in revised 14 CFR Part 121.

Airport Classification

Back to Top

16. An airport has an AOC (full or limited) and air carrier service. Can it surrender its AOC?

An airport can surrender its AOC at any time under 14 CFR � 139.109 (current and new). However, surrender of an AOC by an airport operator that has accepted AIP grants may conflict with the airport operator's grant assurance of reasonable access if current or planned operations must be cancelled as a result.

Airport Classification

Back to Top

17. The airport has a limited AOC under the current Part 139 and has scheduled service with 10-30 seat aircraft. A Class II AOC is required to permit current operations to continue. Can the airport operator elect a Class IV AOC under the new Part 139 to require the commuter service to cease?

No. 49 U.S.C. � 44706(f) does not apply to changes in class of AOC by a certificated airport. Since the airport already has an AOC (even if limited), it would be required to continue to meet appropriate certification requirements for the kinds of operations at the airport and convert its AOC to one of the new Part 139 classes. A limited-AOC airport will be designated either Class II or Class IV, depending on the types of commercial service at the airport. The FAA would make the determination as to what class the airport would hold.

This does not appear to be an issue in other situations: Certificated airports with scheduled large-aircraft service will simply be designated as Class I; uncertificated airports with commuter service (and certificated airports with commuter service but no recent or planned large-aircraft service) will be designated Class III; and limited-AOC airports with no commuter service will be designated Class IV.

Airport Classification

Back to Top

18. The airport has a limited AOC under the current Part 139. There is no scheduled service at a limited-AOC airport, but an air carrier has notified the airport that it intends to begin scheduled service with 10-30 passenger seat aircraft. The service would require a Class II AOC. Can the airport elect to meet the requirements only for a Class IV AOC to keep the commuter air carrier from beginning scheduled service?

As stated in Question 17, a limited-AOC airport will be designated as either a Class II or Class IV airport, depending on the types of commercial service it provides. The FAA generally treats planned service the same as existing service. For example, planned operations are taken into account in airport planning and in FAA grant decisions. Also, an operator that is 'directly and substantially affected' by an airport access rule will have standing to file a formal complaint with FAA under 14 CFR Part 16. The FAA has considered an operator prevented from starting service to be 'directly and substantially affected' by the airport's actions and has accepted a complaint from the operator.

The FAA will treat the planned service the same as existing service if the operator (1) is able to actually begin service, i.e. to have the use of necessary facilities and equipment, and have the necessary Department of Transportation and FAA authority to operate scheduled air transportation and (2) has filed formal notice with the airport operator of intent to begin service within a reasonable time, e.g. 2-6 months.

Therefore, FAA expects that the operator of a limited-AOC airport, if the airport has a pending request by a carrier able to begin scheduled 10-30 seat service, will meet the requirements of a Class II AOC in order to remain in compliance with its grant assurance of reasonable, not unjustly discriminatory access.

Procedure: If a limited-AOC airport with a pending request for scheduled 10-30 seat service applies for a Class IV AOC, the Airports Regional Office should advise the airport operator of its grant obligations but review the application under Part 139 as a Class IV AOC. If the air carrier files a formal complaint under 14 CFR Part 16, FAA will determine the airport operator's obligations in a Part 16 Director's Determination. That Determination could require, as part of a corrective action plan, that the airport operator apply for and meet the requirements of a Class II AOC.

Airport Classification

Back to Top

19. A limited-AOC airport with no scheduled air carrier service applies for a Class I AOC under the new Part 139 and is willing to meet all the requirements. Should FAA designate the airport as Class I as requested?

Generally FAA will designate the appropriate class of AOC for the kinds of commercial service operating at the airport. However, the FAA Airports Regional Office may make the determination to designate an AOC as Class I where there is a reasonable prospect of scheduled service or in other special circumstances. For example, if an airport is served by frequent and regular Part 380 scheduled charters, FAA may elect to designate a Class I AOC for that airport even though it is not technically required for that service.

Airport Classification

Back to Top

20. Does an airport designated as a Class II, III, or IV airport (in accordance with Part 139) need to accommodate an air carrier wishing to serve the airport with aircraft that require the airport to have a Class I AOC?

Not necessarily. Operations by larger aircraft may require changes in airport facilities as well as the Class I AOC. FAA Flight Standards approval of the operation may also require FAA environmental review. Whether the air carrier's request raises an issue of reasonable access to the airport will depend on the circumstances at the airport. If an airport is concerned about upgrading an AOC to Class I to permit new scheduled service by aircraft with more than 30 passenger seats, the Airports Regional Office should contact the FAA Office of Airport Safety and Standards for coordination with its Engineering, Safety and Operations, and Compliance Divisions.

Federal Funding

Back to Top

21. Does the $15 million set aside AIP funding for Class III airports apply to previously certificated airports?

Yes. Air-21 requires Airport Improvement Program (AIP) funds to be set aside for costs related to the certification of airports serving small air carrier operations (see Section 128 of Air-21). The FAA is required to set aside $15 million of AIP funds for such costs each year for 4 fiscal years following the effective date of the revised Regulation (June 9, 2004). Any airport operator who is required to obtain an airport operating certificate (AOC) in order to continue to serve scheduled operations of small air carrier aircraft, whether or not the operator has previously held an AOC, can apply for these funds for eligible costs related to obtaining a Part 139 AOC.

Fueling

Back to Top

22. Do fuel farms not located on airport property serving the airport need to be inspected for fire safety in accordance with Part 139.321? If so, how far away from the airport would this requirement apply?

No. Part 139.321 fuel fire safety requirements are specific to fueling operations on the airport. Under Part 139.5, an airport is defined as 'an area of land or other hard surface, excluding water, that is used or intended to be used for the landing and takeoff of aircraft, including any buildings and facilities.' Buildings and facilities included in this definition are those adjacent landing and takeoff areas that support aircraft operations. While an off-airport fuel farm is a facility that supports aircraft operations, if it is off airport property, it is considered outside the scope of Part 139. However, any fueling trucks that use such off-airport fuel farms and come onto the airport must be inspected under Part 139.321.

Fueling

Back to Top

23. Do fuel dispensing and storage facilities used for airport ground vehicles and rental cars need to be inspected for fire safety in accordance with Part 139.321?

No. The intent of Part 139.321 is focused on aviation fuel fire safety standards and is aimed at ensuring procedures to protect aviation facilities, such as fuel farms and aviation fueling trucks and equipment.

Fueling

Back to Top

24. During quarterly fuel fire safety inspection, can the airport operator restrict its inspection to random sampling of fuel trucks and hydrant carts?

No. The airport operator must inspect all fuel trucks and hydrant carts; an inspection of a sampling of these trucks and carts is not acceptable.

Fueling

Back to Top

25. Must a Part 139 airport operator inspect fuel trucks, fueling cabinets, or fuel farms associated with general aviation-use exclusively? What about privately owned fueling operations associated with corporate general aviation?

Yes. Part 139.321(b) requires an airport operator to establish and maintain fuel fire safety standards for fueling operations on the airport. This requirement is not specific to air carrier fueling; rather, it applies to all fueling operations that occur on an airport certificated under Part 139. Further, airport operators certificated under Part 139 must also ensure that such general aviation fueling facilities are incorporated into the airport operator's emergency plan (see Part 139.325(b)(4)).

Fueling

Back to Top

26. Must hydrant fueling carts (both stationary and mobile) used by airports with hydrant fuel systems be inspected?

Yes, hydrant fueling carts used with hydrant fuel systems must be inspected under Part 139.321. Part 139.321(b) states that the airport operator must 'establish procedures for protecting against fire and explosion in dispensing and otherwise handling fuel on the airport,' even if hydrant fueling carts are not listed as fueling facilities under paragraph (b)(4) and (5). Items listed in (b)(1)-(6) are those items that, at the very least, must be included in fuel fire safety procedures�this list is not inclusive.

Fueling

Back to Top

27. The revised Regulation requires that fuel-line supervisors must have attended a training course in fuel fire safety authorized by the Administrator (see Part 139.321). The Regulation also requires that fuel-line supervisors must receive recurrent instruction at least every 24 months. What exactly does 'recurrent instruction' mean? Does it mean that fuel-line supervisors must attend one of the FAA-recognized courses to receive credit for recurrent instruction, or could the recurrent instruction be accomplished locally?

In addition to having to attend initial training in fire safety at a course approved by the Administrator, fuel-line supervisors are also required by Part 139.321 to receive their recurrent instruction at programs similarly approved by the Administrator. Accordingly, the fuel-line supervisor must attend an FAA-recognized fuel fire safety course in order to comply with the requirement for recurrent instruction. The FAA periodically publishes a list of approved fuel fire safety programs. This list appears in the addendum to AC 150/5230-4, Aircraft Fuel Storage, Handling, Training, and Dispensing on Airports, but it is not all-inclusive. There are some regionally approved programs for specific airports. Check with your Airport Certification Safety Inspector for a list of other programs.

Applicability

Back to Top

28. Do the following charters operating aircraft of more than 30 passengers seats qualify as unscheduled air carriers within the purview of 14 CFR Part 139: a sports charter, Department of Corrections prisoner transport, and a VIP Presidential arrival and the associated press planes that follow?

Yes. Operations conducted as supplemental operations under Part 121 or public charters under Part 380 are subject to the provisions of Part 139. However, all of the operations listed in the question could be conducted under other FAA regulations, such as 14 CFR Part 91, that would not require the airport operator to have a Part 139 Airport Operating Certificate. The FAA encourages airport operators that are unsure as to the type of operation an aircraft operator is conducting to contact the FAA Airport Certification Safety Inspector (ACSI) assigned to their airport. The ACSI will coordinate with the appropriate FAA Flights Standards staff to determine what operations the aircraft operator has authorization to conduct and determine the need for a Part 139 AOC.

Aircraft Rescue & Fire Fighting (ARFF)

Back to Top

29. Can the costs associated with increased ARFF coverage be passed along to the air carriers, and if so, how would this be accomplished?

Yes. Reasonable costs associated with increased ARFF coverage can be passed along to air carriers. Most likely this can be accomplished by the same means the airport operator currently uses to recover operational costs from tenants and air carriers. Usually, airport operators include a clause in the lease agreements with air carriers that establishes a method for the airport operator to pass along additional operational costs. Airport operators may also have adopted Minimum Standards for Commercial Aeronautical Activities, which establish the process by which airport operators can pass along additional operational costs to their tenants, including an increase in landing fees. Operators of Federally obligated airports also may have additional requirements for recovering costs from tenant and air carriers as a result of their grant assurances. For more information on grant assurances, airport operators should contact the local FAA Airports office and review information about the FAA Compliance Program.

Aircraft Rescue & Fire Fighting (ARFF)

Back to Top

30. Where can we obtain a list of the approved fire training facilities that include military simulators that can be used to meet the Part 139 live burn requirement?

You can find the list in AC 150/5210-17, Programs for Training of Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Personnel.

Airport Emergency Plan

Back to Top

31. If an airport is required to have water rescue provisions listed in the Airport Certification Manual but does not have sufficient water rescue equipment to accommodate the largest air carrier aircraft operating from the airport, what course of action must the airport operator follow? What determines the appropriate equipment for meeting compliance under the requirements in Part 139.325(c)(f)?

As is currently the case, the Regulation does not require the airport operator to own or acquire water rescue equipment if other arrangements can be made with Federal or local authorities who already provide water rescue, such as the Coast Guard or Harbor Patrol, as long as such arrangements comply with the requirement of Part 139.325(f) and are acceptable to the Administrator.

AC 150/5210-13, Water Rescue Plans, Facilities and Equipment provides guidance to airport operators on the appropriate equipment for complying with water rescue requirements. However, the FAA Airport Certification Safety Inspector and the airport operator have the flexibility to use means other than those described in AC 150/5210-13 to meet the airport's operational needs and to provide reasonable coverage, given the local circumstances and available resources.

Training

Back to Top

32. Several sections of the revised Part 139 require initial and annual training for certain airport personnel. Must this training begin immediately after the effective date of the revised rule (June 9, 2004)?

No. Deadlines for complying with revised Part 139 training requirements will be based on the date FAA approves the airport operator's new or revised Airport Certification Manual (ACM). Until such time, FAA will require airport operators who currently hold a Part 139 Airport Operating Certificate to continue to comply with their existing FAA-approved ACM. For example, consider an operator of a Class I airport that submits to FAA its revised ACM on December 9, 2004 (the deadline for Class I airports to submit revised ACMs). After review, FAA approves the revised ACM and reissues the airport operator's certificate on January 5, 2005. In order to comply with training requirements of Part 139.303 (c) for personnel who perform duties in movement and safety areas in compliance with the ACM and Part 139, the airport operator must ensure that new employees hired after January 5, 2005, receive initial training and existing employees receive annual training by January 5, 2006 (see Part 139.303, Personnel). Deadlines for completing other training requirements in the Regulation also are based on the date FAA approves the new or revised ACM.

Training

Back to Top

33. If existing employees are not required to receive initial training after the ACM is approved, does the airport operator have to provide documentation that the such employees have already had initial training prior to the day the ACM was approved?

No, new training requirements are not retroactive. However, if an existing airport employee is reassigned to new duties under the ACM after the ACM is approved, the airport operator will need to ensure that this individual receives initial training on the new duties, as specified in the revised Regulation.

In addition, airport operators are still required to show compliance with training requirements that did not change, i.e., ARFF, fuel fire safety, and ground vehicle training requirements. For example, an airport operator will still be required to show that a fueling agent hired before the ACM approval date has completed an FAA authorized aviation fuel training course, as this s an existing training requirement that did not change with the revision of the Regulation.

Training

Back to Top

34. Are an airport operator's employees who are escorted by another employee in movement areas and safety areas required to be trained under Part 139.303(c)?

Yes - if the employee performs duties that are described in the Airport Certification Manual (ACM) or duties necessary for the airport operator to comply with Part 139. Part 139.303(c) requires any employee with access to movement areas or safety areas, whether escorted or not, to be trained if that employee performs duties in compliance with the requirements of the ACM and the revised Part 139. For example, an airport electrician that performs airfield lighting maintenance in compliance with the airport operator's ACM must be trained per Part 139.303(c), even if airport operations personnel escort the electrician in the movement area.

The training required under Part 139.303 is intended to ensure employees performing duties in compliance with Part 139 are knowledgeable of these duties, are made aware of any changes to Part 139 and any revisions to standards or the ACM, and are familiar with the unique environment of the movement and safety areas. Training on safety procedures for accessing and operating on movement and safety areas is addressed elsewhere in the Part 139 (see Part 139.329, Pedestrians and Ground Vehicles).

Training

Back to Top

35. Are airport operators responsible for training individuals that perform duties in movement or safety areas but are not airport employees, such as FAA employees or construction employees?

Yes. The type of training required depends on whether such employees are performing duties necessary to comply with the Airport Certification Manual (ACM) or Part 139. Part 139.303(c) training requirements do not apply to employees whose duties require that they be in movement or safety areas but are not required under Part 139. Most likely a FAA employee in the movement or safety area is performing maintenance on FAA-owned navigation equipment; and maintenance of FAA-owned equipment is typically not addressed in the ACM and not required under Part 139. Similarly, construction work in movement and safety areas is not required under Part 139 per se, but the rule does require the airport operator to develop and implement safety procedures for construction. Thus, workers performing construction duties would not require training under Part 139.303(c), but airport operations personnel would require training under this section if they are responsible under the ACM to ensure that construction personnel follow the airport construction safety plan.

Even though some individuals performing duties in movement and safety areas do not require training under Part 139.303 (c), these individuals probably will require training under Part 139.329, Pedestrians and ground vehicles, to ensure they understand safety procedures for accessing and moving about such areas and the consequence for not complying with these procedures. In addition, Part 139 has training requirements for individuals performing certain inspection and emergency response duties (see Part 139.319, .321, and .327).

Training

Back to Top

36. Are airport operators required under revised Part 139.303 to train contract and emergency personnel who have access to movement areas and safety areas?

Contract and emergency personnel who occasionally support airport personnel in complying with the Airport Certification Manual (ACSM) — such as mutual aid responders who access movement areas only during emergencies — are not required to be trained under this section but may need training under �139.325 and �139.329. However, personnel who regularly perform duties under the ACM must be trained under �139.303, such as law enforcement officers who regularly enforce ground vehicles procedures in movement and safety areas.

Training

Back to Top

37. Can an airport operator allow tenants to conduct some of the recurrent training now required under the revised Part 139, and if so, what type of audits, checks, or verification will be required?

Yes. An airport operator can train and authorize a tenant to conduct initial or recurrent training. Part 139.303(f) allows the airport operator to use a designee to comply with the requirements of Part 139 so long as this arrangement is FAA-approved and certain records are maintained. Such an arrangement has to be documented in the Airport Certification Manual (ACM), including procedures for keeping training records and the frequency such records will be submitted to the airport operator. For example, an airport operator could train several air carrier employees to be trainers for ground vehicle operation training and require the air carriers to submit monthly training records. While Part 139.303(f) does not require audits of training records in such arrangements, it does require the designee performing the training to prepare 'records in sufficient detail as to assure the certificate holder and FAA of adequate compliance with the ACM and Part 139.' How this verification is accomplished must be detailed in the ACM and may include procedures for record audits, testing, etc.

Training

Back to Top

38. If individuals who are required to be trained under the revised Regulation received industry training within the past year, such as training programs offered by the American Association of Airport Executives and FAA, do they have to be re-trained?

Most likely not. Such industry training programs typically do not cover the airport-specific training requirement in many sections of the revised Part 139 and could not be used to meet such training requirements totally. In addition, training requirements under the revised Regulation are not retroactive. For example, consider an airport that has its ACM approved on January 15, 2005. Any new employee hired after this date must be given initial training specific to that airport, so training received prior to employment would not qualify. In addition, existing employees would have until January 15, 2006, to receive recurrent training, so training received by existing employees prior to approval of the ACM would fall outside this annual recurrent timeframe and would not be acceptable.

Training

Back to Top

39. Has FAA developed a particular training curriculum for each subject area specified in revised Part 139.303 or 139.327, or will the training be based on what the airport establishes in the ACM? Can the appropriate Advisory Circulars be used as training reference?

The FAA has not developed a training curriculum for the subject areas specified in Part 139.303 and 139.327, such as training programs/guidance provided for ARFF or fuel fire safety training, and at the present time, FAA does not anticipate developing such a curriculum. Accordingly, airport operators will be required to develop their own training curricula, as specified in their ACMs and under the revised Regulation. Since many of the required training subject areas are site-specific, a training curriculum will be unique to each airport and, at a minimum, should incorporate any Advisory Circular that the airport operator cites in its ACM.

While the training curriculum does not have to be specified in the ACM, the FAA Airport Certification Safety Inspector will review the training curriculum to ensure it adequately addresses the subject areas listed in the revised Part 139. During the inspection, the ACSI may test and observe employees to determine if this training is adequate.