Grand Prairie, TX – July 22, 2009 – The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has approved and authorized American Eurocopter to operate under the FAA’s new Organization Designation Authorization (ODA) program. The ODA authorizes American Eurocopter to act on behalf of the FAA when approving and issuing Supplemental Type Certificates (STCs).
“This designation will allow us to be more responsive to market demands and significantly improve our reactiveness to our customers’ requirements,” said Allen Andress VP Operations. “Along with this designation comes a great responsibility and commitment on behalf of American Eurocopter’s senior management to ensure the highest standards of quality, reliability and safety of our aircraft and products.”
STCs are required whenever major changes are made to FAA-approved aircraft, to ensure that the changes meet FAA specifications. “In giving us this responsibility, the FAA has determined that we possess the integrity and the skills to do STC work on behalf of the government,” says George Sparling PE, American Eurocopter’s Director of Certification. “This delegation will allow us to meet our deadlines sooner and more effectively.”
Companies who apply to the FAA directly for STCs can find themselves waiting 18 months to two years for the government to review their proposed changes. In contrast, under the ODA program, designated companies such as American Eurocopter conduct the STC process on the FAA’s behalf, then send their results to the agency with a 30-day guaranteed response time. “After we receive FAA approval, we issue the STC,” Sparling says. “In essence, we work as agents of the FAA following their rules, even though our salaries are paid by American Eurocopter.”
To date, the FAA has awarded more than 450 STCs to American Eurocopter. The quality of these approved STCs, as submitted to the government, clearly established the company’s commitment to FAA standards. This made it easy for the government to delegate STC authority under the ODA program.
“It is fair to say that American Eurocopter has proven, to the government’s satisfaction, that we can create and promulgate STCs as well as the FAA, or better,” Sparling concludes. “We are proud to do so, and grateful to have earned the FAA’s trust.”
This new designation was presented to American Eurocopter by Charles C. Harrison, Acting Manager, Rotocraft Certification Office, on June 24th in Grand Prairie.
About American Eurocopter
American Eurocopter is the U.S. subsidiary of Eurocopter, the largest helicopter manufacturer in the world, and EADS North America Holdings, the North American operations of EADS, the second largest aerospace and defense company in the world. American Eurocopter is a helicopter manufacturer and the company markets, sells and supports the broadest range of civil and para-public helicopters offered by any manufacturer. The product line represents the most cost-effective, technologically-advanced helicopters, ranging from light single to heavy twin, serving all markets and missions. American Eurocopter's headquarters and main facility are in Grand Prairie, TX, with a large manufacturing and production facility in Columbus, MS and its West Coast Regional Support Facility in Long Beach, CA.