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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-09-073
Details
Synopsis: On March 4, 2008, about 1515 central standard time, a Cessna 500, N113SH, registered to Southwest Orthopedic & Sports Medicine Clinic PC of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, entered a steep descent and crashed after colliding in flight with a flock of large birds about 2 minutes after takeoff from Wiley Post Airport (PWA) in Oklahoma City.2 None of the entities associated with the flight claimed to be its operator. The pilot, the second pilot,3 and the three passengers were killed, and the airplane was destroyed by impact forces and postcrash fire. The flight was operated under 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 with an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan filed. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight originated from the ramp of Interstate Helicopters (a 14 CFR Part 135 on-demand helicopter operator at PWA) and was en route to Mankato Regional Airport (MKT), Mankato, Minnesota, carrying company executives who worked for United Engines and United Holdings, LLC.
Recommendation: TO THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION: Verify that all federally obligated general aviation airports that are located near woodlands, water, wetlands, or other wildlife attractants are complying with the requirements to perform wildlife hazard assessments as specified in Federal Aviation Administration Advisory Circular 150/5200-33B, Hazardous Wildlife Attractants On or Near Airports.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Alternate Action
Mode: Aviation
Location: Oklahoma City, OK, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DFW08MA076
Accident Reports: Crash of Cessna 500, N113SH, Following an In-Flight Collision with Large Birds
Report #: AAR-09-05
Accident Date: 3/4/2008
Issue Date: 9/29/2009
Date Closed: 6/21/2017
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Acceptable Alternate Action)
Keyword(s): General Aviation,Wildlife

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 6/21/2017
Response: We note that, on December 10, 2012, you published a Federal Register notice proposing clarifying Grant Assurance #19 to require noncertificated, federally obligated general aviation (GA) airports to conduct WHAs. The Office of Management and Budget determined this would be a significant change to existing policy and requested a cost-benefit analysis. The cost benefit analysis did not support the proposed clarification and, as a result, you were not able to implement it. As an alternative, you developed a voluntary program for WHAs at GA airports. Your program divided GA airports into four categories based on aircraft and total operations. On November 7, 2014, you informed us that of the 127 Group 1 airports (those airports having 100 or more jets or 75,000 or more total annual operations), 40 were scheduled to have initiated WHAs by the end of 2014. On December 12, 2014, we told you that verifying that all Group 1 airports had performed a WHA or a wildlife hazard site visit (WHSV) was an alternate action that would satisfy Safety Recommendation A-09-73. We note that there are currently 134 Group 1 airports, of which 127 (about 95 percent) have initiated or concluded a WHA or WHSV. Of the remaining seven, four have a bird/wildlife aircraft strike hazard program, which is the military’s equivalent program. The remaining three chose not to conduct a WHA because an airport wildlife biologist determined that a full WHA was not necessary. On the basis of this information, Safety Recommendation A-09-73 is classified CLOSED—ACCEPTABLE ALTRENATE ACTION.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 5/8/2017
Response: -From Michael P. Huerta, Administrator: In our previous letter to the Board dated November 7, 20 14. the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) noted that we issued a Federal Register Notice on December 10, 2012, proposing a clarification of Grant Assurance # 19 to require non-certificated federally obligated general aviation (GA) airports to conduct Wildlife Hazard Assessments (WHA). The Office of Management and Budget determined this would be a significant change in existing policy and requested a cost-benefit analysis. The cost-benefit analysis did not support the proposed clarification. so the FAA moved forward with a voluntary program for WHAs at GA airports. The FAA contacted all Group 1 GA airports, which are airports with at least 100 based jets and/or 75,000 or more annual operations. The FAA recommended that all Group 1 airports conduct a WHA or a Wildlife Hazard Site Visit (WHSV), and emphasized that the FAA will make Airport Improvement Program grant funds available to airports supporting these WHAs and WHSYs. In the Board's letter elated December 12, 2014. the 13oarcl indicated that this would be an acceptable alternative response. The Board also requested that the FAA report whether all Group I airports had completed a WHSY or WHA.\ There are currently 134 Group I airports. Since the r: AA started this voluntary effort. 127 airports (about 95 percent) have initiated or concluded a WHA or WHSY. Of the remaining seven, four have a Bird/Wildlife Aircraft Strike Hazard program, as referred to by the different branches of the military. The remaining three chose not to conduct a WI-IA because an Airport Wildlife Biologist determined a full WHA was not necessary.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 12/12/2014
Response: We note that, on December 10, 2012, you published a Federal Register Notice that? 1. Proposed a clarification of Grant Assurance # 19, “Operation and Maintenance,” which would require that non-certificated federally obligated airports that accept new airport improvement program funds or a transfer of land under the Surplus Property Act for airport purposes conduct Wildlife Hazard Site Visits (WHSVs) or Wildlife Hazard Assessments (WHAs). 2. Issued for public comment a revision to AC 150/5200-33. We also note that, as directed by the Office of Management and Budget, you subsequently researched the costs and benefits of the proposed clarification, determined that you could not show a positive cost-benefit relationship, and then started an initiative to encourage non-certificated airports to voluntarily conduct a WHA or a WHSV. We understand that you have divided the subject airports into four categories based on aircraft and total operations and that, of the 127 Group 1 airports (those airports having 100 or more jets and/or 75,000 or more total annual operations), 40 will have initiated WHAs by the end of 2014. We have considered your actions and plans and have determined that verifying that all Group 1 airports have performed a WHSV or a WHA would constitute an acceptable alternate response to this recommendation. Consequently, pending completion of that action, Safety Recommendation A-09-73 is classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE ALTERNATE RESPONSE.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 11/7/2014
Response: -From Michael P. Huerta, Administrator: The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) agrees with the intent of this safety recommendation. As stated in our July 24, 201 3, letter, the FAA issued a Federal Register Notice (FRN) for public comment on December I 0, 2012 (77 FR 73511). The FRN proposed a clarification of Grant Assurance # 19, Operation and Maintenance, which would require non-certificated federally-obligated airports that, after the effective date of the FRN, accept a new airport development grant funded under the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) or accept a transfer of land under the Surplus Property Act for airport purposes (Subject Airports), to conduct Wildlife Hazard Site Visits (WHSVs) or Wildlife Hazard Assessments (WHAs). As part of the same notice, the FAA issued for public comment a proposed revision to Advisory Circular 150/5200-33C, Hazardous Wildlife Attractants On or Near Airports. The Office of Management and Budget determined that the proposed clarification would be a significant change in existing policy and requested that the FAA conduct a formal cost-benefit analysis on this change. As a result, the FAA researched the costs and benefits of the proposed clarification and determined that we would be more successful pursuing a voluntary program. The FAA started an initiative to encourage non-certificated airports to conduct a WHA or a WHSV. As stated in the FRN, non-certificated airports include smaller commercial service airports, as well as non-primary airports that service mostly general aviation operations. The effort will be supported by providing financial assistance through AIP grant funds. The FAA has divided the Subject Airports into four categories based on aircraft and total operations. Group 1 category airports have 100 or more jets and/or 75,000 or more total annual operations. We have reviewed the airports in Group 1 (168 in previous responses) and determined, based on the most recent data available, that the number of airports currently in Group 1 is 127. In 2014, we plan to initiate WHAs at 40 Group 1 airports. I will keep the Board informed of the FAA's progress of this recommendation and provide an updated response by September 2015.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 10/29/2013
Response: We are encouraged to learn that the FAA has published a notice for public comment that would clarify the applicability of Grant Assurance #19 and would require noncertificated, federally obligated airports that accept a transfer of land under the Surplus Property Act for airport purposes to conduct Wildlife Hazard Site Visits (WHSV) or WHAs. We are also pleased that the FAA has requested comments on a proposed revision to AC 150/5200-33C, “Hazardous Wildlife Attractants On or Near Airports,” which would require WHSVs or WHAs at noncertificated airports after the final notice has been issued. Pending revision of the AC and the completion of WHAs at all affected airports, Safety Recommendation A-09-73 remains classified OPEN—ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 7/24/2013
Response: -From Michael P. Huerta, Administrator: On December 10, 2012, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) published a Federal Register Notice for public comment that proposed a clarification of Grant Assurance # 19, "Operation and Maintenance", which is required of an airport sponsor as a condition of receiving a development grant under the Airport Improvement Program (AlP) (77 FR 73511). The comment period closed January 9, 2013. This proposed clarification would require noncertificated, federally-obligated airports that accept a new airport development grant funded under the AlP or accept a transfer of land under the Surplus Property Act tor airport purposes ("Subject Airports") to conduct Wildlife Hazard Site Visits (WHSVs) or Wildlife Hazard Assessments (WHAs). As part of the same notice, we issued for public comment a proposed revision to Advisory Circular (AC) 150/5200-33C, Hazardous Wildlife Attractants On or Near Airports. This revised AC would require WHSVs or WHAs at noncertficated airports after the FAA issues a final Federal Register Notice clarifying the applicability of Grant Assurance #19. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) determined that this proposed clarification would be a significant change in existing policy and requested that the FAA conduct a formal costbenefit analysis on this change. As a result, this effort has been delayed while we prepare a costbenefit analysis for review by OMB. We expect to complete this analysis in late 2013.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 5/27/2010
Response: The NTSB is pleased with the FAA’s plans to modify AC 150/5200-33B and its grant assurances to clarify the responsibility of federally obligated National Plan of Integrated Airport System/General Aviation (NPIAS/GA) airports to conduct wildlife hazard assessments (WHA). The FAA’s plans to make Aviation Improvement Program grant funds available to these airports to conduct WHAs and the preparation of a plan to establish the priority and subsequent schedule for completing WHAs are also responsive to this recommendation. However, the NTSB emphasizes that the reason for issuing this recommendation was that, despite an existing WHA requirement for NPIAS/GA airports, the NTSB found that neither the airports nor the FAA was verifying that a WHA had been performed before granting funds. The NTSB asks the FAA to describe planned revisions to its grant review and management processes to ensure that a WHA has been completed before granting funds to an NPIAS/GA airport. Pending receipt of an answer to that question, revisions to the AC, and the completion of WHAs at all affected airports, Safety Recommendation A-09-73 is classified OPEN -- ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 12/23/2009
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 1/7/2010 3:59:43 PM MC# 2100009: - From J. Randolph Babbitt, Administrator: We intend to modify Advisory Circular (AC) 150/5200-33B and our grant assurances to clarify the responsibility of federally obligated National Plan of Integrated Airport System/General Aviation (NPIAS/GA) airports, to conduct wildlife hazard assessments (WHA). To assist the airports in conducting the WHAs, we will make Aviation Improvement Program (AIP) grant funds available to them and we will prepare a plan to establish the priority and subsequent schedule for completing the WHAs. As there are about 2,849 federally obligated NPIAS/GA airports, we anticipate it will take several years to complete the assessments. We will provide the Board with a more detailed plan and schedule for revising the AC and grant assurances and conducting the WHAs by the end of March 2010.