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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-97-073
Details
Synopsis: On 5/11/96, about 1415 eastern daylight time, a McDonnell Douglas DC-9-32 crashed into the everglades swamp shortly after takeoff from Miami International Airport, Miami Florida, the airplane, N904VJ, was operated by ValuJet Airlines, Inc., as ValuJet flight 592. Both pilots, the three flight attendants, and all 105 passengers were killed. Before the accident, the flightcrew reported to air traffic control that it was experiencing smoke in the cabin and cockpit. Visual meteorological conditions existed in the Miami area at the time of the takeoff. The destination of the flight was Hartsfield International Airport, Atlanta, Georgia. Flight 592 was on an instrument flight rules flight plan.
Recommendation: TO THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION: Require air carriers to ensure that maintenance facility personnel, including mechanics, shipping, receiving, and stores personnel, at air carrier-operated or subcontractor facilities, are provided initial and recurrent training in hazardous materials recognition, and proper labeling packaging, and shipment procedures with respect to the specific items of hazardous materials that are handled by the air carrier's maintenance functions.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Aviation
Location: Miami, FL, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA96MA054
Accident Reports: In-Flight Fire and Impact With Terrain Valujet Airlines Flight 592 DC-9-32, N904VJ
Report #: AAR-97-06
Accident Date: 5/11/1996
Issue Date: 9/9/1997
Date Closed: 3/16/2006
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s): Maintenance, Training and Education, Hazmat

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 3/16/2006
Response: The Safety Board notes that on October 7, 2005, the FAA published its final rule to revise 14 Code of Federal Regulations Parts 119, 121, 135, and 145, "Hazardous Materials Training Requirements." The rule amends the current air carrier hazardous materials manual requirements and training requirements and mandates that repair stations provide documentation showing that personnel handling hazardous materials have been trained as required by the Department of Transportation's Hazardous Materials Regulations. Issuance of this final rule meets the intent of Safety Recommendations A-96-26 and A-97-73, which are classified "Closed-Acceptable Action."

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 11/17/2005
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 11/30/2005 11:34:28 AM MC# 2050551 Marion C. Blakey, Administrator, FAA, 11/17/05 The Federal Aviation Administration published its final rule on October 7, 2005, to revise 14 CFR Parts 119, 121, 135, and 145 Hazardous Materials Training Requirements. The final rule amends the current air carrier hazardous material manual requirements and training requirements for certain air carrier and commercial operators. The final rule also requires that certain repair stations provide documentation showing that persons handling hazardous materials for transportation have been trained as required by the Department of Transportation's Hazardous Materials Regulations. The final rule sets clear hazardous materials training standards and ensures uniform compliance with hazardous materials training requirements. I have enclosed a copy of the final rule for the Board's information. I believe that the FAA has satisfactorily responded to these safety recommendations, and I look forward to your response.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 2/28/2005
Response: In its 2/28/2005 report to Congress, "Open Statutory Mandates Regarding Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety," the DOT wrote: NPRM issued on May 8,2003. Final rule was drafted and sent to OST for clearance. FAA is incorporating OST's amendments and will issue it by March 31,2005.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 2/23/2004
Response: The provisions proposed in the NPRM titled "Hazardous Materials Training Requirements," issued on May 8, 2003, will fully address this recommendation if adopted and implemented. Pending issuance of the final rule, Safety Recommendation A-97-73 remains classified "Open--Acceptable Response."

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 7/21/2003
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 8/7/2003 10:17:48 AM MC# 2030379 AC 120-16D applies to 14 CFR Parts 119, 121, and 135 air carriers. For 14 CFR Part 135 operations, the AC applies only to operations conducted with aircraft type-certificated for a seating capacity of 10 seats or more (excluding any pilot seat). Chapter 11 of the AC discusses procedures, information, instructions, guidance, and precautions that should be contained in operators' manuals concerning hazardous materials. This includes identifying or recognizing aircraft components or consumable materials that contain hazardous materials; the safe movement, storage, or handling of those aircraft components or consumable materials within the facility or one of the maintenance providers' facilities; determining the proper packaging, marking, labeling, and materials compatibility of aircraft components or consumable materials containing hazardous materials while they are within the facility or maintenance provider's facilities; specific hazards associated with aircraft components or consumable materials containing hazardous materials to be moved, stored, or handled within the facility; and proper disposal of unserviceable aircraft components or consumable materials containing hazardous materials. Additionally, Chapter 10 of the AC includes human factors as part of the initial training program. The FAA believes that the requirements for improved and specific hazardous material training programs, authorizations, and notifications included in the NPRM in response to Safety Recommendation A-97-65 will complete the requirements of these recommendations. I believe that the FAA has satisfactorily responded to these safety recommendations, and I look forward to your response.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 7/1/2003
Response: Notation 6704C: The National Transportation Safety Board has reviewed the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA’s) notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), “Hazardous Materials Training Requirements,” Docket No. FAA-2003-15085, which was published at 68 Federal Register 24811 on May 8, 2003. The Board notes that the proposed rulemaking addresses issues that pertain to Safety Recommendations A-96-26 and A-97-73, which were issued as a result of the Safety Board’s investigation of the crash of ValuJet flight 592 in the Florida Everglades on May 11, 1996. Safety Recommendation A-96-26 called for the FAA to require all air carriers, based on the results of a previously completed evaluation, to revise as necessary their practices and training for accepting passenger baggage and freight shipments and for identifying undeclared or unauthorized hazardous materials that are offered for transport. The Safety Board notes that the proposed new rule would amend the operating requirements and standardize hazardous materials training requirements for all passenger air carriers regulated under 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 121 (passenger air carriers operating aircraft with 60 or more seats) and 14 CFR Part 135 (passenger air carriers operating aircraft with fewer than 60 seats). According to the NPRM, if the proposed rule is adopted, each Part 121 and Part 135 carrier will be required to specifically state in its operations manual whether the carrier will carry hazardous materials. The carrier will then be required to train its employees who perform or supervise transportation-related functions, such as flight and cabin crews, baggage handlers, and ticket agents. The proposed rule would also establish separate training curricula for both “will carry” and “will not carry” carriers. The rule would specify the required topics and subject matter to be addressed under each curriculum and would require that employees in specific job functions complete specific training modules covering such topics as company material (COMAT), packaging, marking and labeling, and hidden dangerous goods. The Safety Board notes that the FAA also proposes to require that the operations manuals for each Part 121 and Part 135 carrier include procedures and information regarding the identification and/or rejection of packages that show signs of containing undeclared hazardous materials. The Safety Board supports these training proposals and believes that their implementation will be a significant safety improvement. The Board notes that the proposed training requirements would apply only to passenger air carriers. The FAA confirmed to Safety Board staff that the proposed requirements would not apply to cargo-only carriers or to the cargo-only operations of passenger carriers. Under the U.S. Department of Transportation Hazardous Materials Regulations (49 CFR Parts 171-180), any carrier (regardless of mode) that transports hazardous materials is required to provide hazardous materials training to its employees who perform transportation-related functions. However, because of their intermodal nature, the Hazardous Materials Regulations do not specify the required subject areas for training and are more generic than the proposed requirements in the NPRM. Consequently, although cargo-only carriers and the cargo-only operations of passenger carriers may already have hazardous materials training programs in place, the specific training requirements in this proposed rulemaking for passenger air carrier operations would benefit air cargo-only operations by establishing specific training curricula. Also, the Hazardous Materials Regulations do not require an air carrier that elects not to transport hazardous materials to provide hazardous materials awareness and recognition training. By extending the proposed rulemaking’s requirements to all air carriers, “will not carry” cargo carriers would be required to provide hazardous materials awareness and recognition training. Therefore, the Safety Board suggests that all cargo carriers and the cargo-only operations of any passenger carriers be subject to comparable standards. Safety Recommendation A-97-73 called for the FAA to require air carriers to ensure that maintenance facility personnel, including mechanics and shipping, receiving, and stores personnel, at air carrier-operated or subcontracted facilities are provided initial and recurrent training in hazardous materials handling. The recommendation specified that this training should cover hazardous materials recognition and the proper labeling, packaging, and shipment procedures with respect to the specific items of hazardous materials that are handled as a result of the carrier’s maintenance functions. The Safety Board notes that the proposed rule would establish explicit training requirements in 14 CFR Part 145 for FAA-certified repair stations. The Safety Board believes that the inclusion of the proposed requirement in 14 CFR Part 145 will greatly enhance the likelihood that repair stations will provide appropriate hazardous materials training for their employees. The proposed rule would also require that an air carrier inform the repair station whether it is a “will carry” or “will not carry” carrier and would require that the repair station provide this information to its employees. The Safety Board also supports these additional requirements and believes that all of the proposed changes to Part 145 are responsive to Safety Recommendation A-97-73. The Safety Board appreciates the opportunity to comment on this proposed rulemaking.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 5/8/2003
Response: "NTSB(SR-10) staff noted that FAA published NPRM in Federal Register this date proposing new Hazardous Materials Training Requirements for Part 121 and 135 air carriers and part 145 repair stations. Cutoff date for comments is July 7, 2003. Proposed implementation schedule is 15 months after publishing final rule."

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 4/24/2001
Response: PENDING ISSUANCE OF REVISIONS TO AC 120-16C THAT MEET THE INTENT OF THESE RECOMMENDATIONS, A-97-67, -69, AND -73 REMAIN CLASSIFIED "OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE."

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 10/2/2000
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 10/04/2000 3:48:25 PM MC# 2001485 ON 5/22/98, THE FAA ISSUED FLIGHT STANDARDS HANDBOOK BULLETIN FOR AIRWORTHINESS 98-10, AIR CARRIER CONTROL AND HANDLING OF AIRCRAFT COMPONENTS OR CONSUMABLE MATERIALS THAT CONTAIN HAZARDOUS MATERIALS. THE BULLETIN PROVIDED INFORMATION AND GUIDANCE TO PRINCIPAL INSPECTORS WITH CERTIFICATE AND SURVEILLANCE RESPONSIBILITIES FOR AIR CARRIERS THAT HAVE AIRCRAFT COMPONENTS OR CONSUMABLE MATERIALS CONTAINING HAZARDOUS MATERIALS. THE BULLETIN PROVIDED SIMILAR HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INFORMATION FOR REPAIR STATIONS. THE FAA ALSO INFORMED THE BOARD THAT ADVISORY CIRCULAR (AC) 120-16C, CONTINUOUS AIRWORTHINESS MAINTENANCE PROGRAMS, WOULD BE REVISED TO INCORPORATE THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THE BULLETINS. ON 7/23/99, THE BOARD STATED THAT IT DID NOT BELIEVE THE BULLETIN MEETS THE INTENT OF A-97-65 BECAUSE IT DID NOT REQUIRE AN INSPECTOR'S SIGNATURE BLOCK ON WORK CARDS THAT CALL FOR HANDLING A COMPONENT CONTAINING HAZARDOUS MATERIALS. THE BOARD FURTHER STATED THAT IT WAS CONCERNED THAT WORK DONE BY 14 CFR PART 145 REPAIR STATIONS AND 14 CFR PART 121 OR 135 AIR CARRIERS IS NOT ADDRESSED IN THE BULLETIN. THE BOARD CLASSIFIED A-97-65 IN AN "OPEN UNACCEPTABLE" STATUS PENDING ADDITIONAL INFORMATION. A-97-67, -69, AND -73 WERE CLASSIFIED IN AN "OPEN ACCEPTABLE" STATUS PENDING THE ISSUANCE OF ORDER 8300.10 AND REVISED AC 120-16C. THE FAA HAS CONSIDERED THE BOARD'S CONCERNS AND BELIEVES ITS CURRENT AND PLANNED ACTIONS ARE APPROPRIATE TO ADDRESS THESE RECOMMENDATIONS. THE FAA ISSUED HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INFORMATION AMENDMENTS TO THE AIRWORTHINESS INSPECTOR'S HANDBOOK THROUGH FLIGHT STANDARDS HANDBOOK BULLETIN FOR AIRWORTHINESS 98-10 FOR AIR CARRIERS AND FLIGHT STANDARDS HANDBOOK BULLETIN FOR AIRWORTHINESS 99-10 FOR REPAIR STATIONS. THESE TWO BULLETINS HAVE SIGNIFICANTLY HEIGHTENED AWARENESS OF CURRENT HAZARDOUS MATERIALS HANDLING AND SHIPPING REGULATIONS FOR AIR CARRIERS AND REPAIR STATIONS. THE FAA IS CONTINUING ITS EFFORT TO REVISE AC 120-16C TO INCLUDE HAZARDOUS MATERIAL INFORMATION. IN THE LONG TERM, THE FAA IS CONSIDERING RULEMAKING ACTIVITY TO AMEND THE CURRENT AIR CARRIER HAZARDOUS MATERIALS MANUAL REQUIREMENTS AND TRAINING REGULATIONS IN 14 CFR PARTS 121, 145, AND 135 TO INCORPORATE SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS FOR IMPROVED AND SPECIFIC HAZARDOUS MATERIALS TRAINING PROGRAMS. THE RULES WOULD IDENTIFY THE SPECIFIC HAZARDOUS TRAINING NEEDED FOR EACH AIR CARRIER OR REPAIR STATION EMPLOYEE BASED ON THE NATURE OF THE HAZARDOUS MATERIALS FUNCTION OR RESPONSIBILITY PERFORMED BY THE EMPLOYEE. IT IS ANTICIPATED THAT THE AC WILL BE ISSUED BY DECEMBER 2000. I WILL PROVIDE THE BOARD WITH A COPY OF THE AC AS SOON AS IT IS ISSUED.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 7/23/1999
Response: A-97-67, -69, AND -73 ARE CLASSIFIED "OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE," PENDING FURTHER CORRESPONDENCE REGARDING THE SAFETY BOARD'S CONCERNS.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 7/23/1998
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 7/27/98 3:17:30 PM MC# 980931: On May 22, 1998, the FAA issued Flight Standards Handbook Bulletin for Airworthiness 98-10, Air Carrier Control and Handling of Aircraft Components or Consumable Materials That Contain Hazardous Materials. The bulletin provides information and guidance to principal inspectors with certificate and surveillance responsibilities for air carriers that have aircraft components or consumable materials containing hazardous materials. The bulletin directs principal inspectors to ensure that their air carriers include the following information in their manuals and that they provide appropriate personnel training: * Procedures and information to assist maintenance, shipping, and stores personnel in identifying or recognizing aircraft components or consumable materials that contain hazardous materials. If those aircraft components or consumable materials are to be moved, stored, or handled within the air carriers or contract maintenance providers' facilities, procedures and instructions relating to the safe movement, storage, or handling of those aircraft components or consumable materials must be included. * Procedures and information for determining the proper packaging, marking, labeling, and materials compatibility, including instructions for the safe movement, storage, and handling of aircraft components or consumable materials that contain hazardous materials while they are within the air carriers' facilities. * Information, guidance, and precautions regarding the specific hazards associated with aircraft components or consumable materials containing hazardous materials that are to be moved, stored, or handled within the air carriers' facilities. * Information, instructions, and detailed procedures for the proper disposal of unserviceable aircraft components or consumable materials containing hazardous materials. The bulletin also directs principal inspectors to ensure that air carriers are aware of all regulations governing air transportation of hazardous materials, that they conduct hazardous materials training in accordance with 14 CFR Part 172, and that they implement a system to ensure that their personnel remain current on the hazardous materials regulations. I have enclosed a copy of the bulletin for the Board's information. The FAA is also revising FAA Order 8300.10, Airworthiness Inspector Handbook, and Advisory Circular (AC) 120-16D, Continuous Airworthiness Maintenance Programs, to incorporate the information contained in the bulletin. I will provide the Board with copies of the order and AC as soon as they are revised.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 11/17/1997
Response: The FAA agrees with the intent of these safety recommendations and is revising FAA Order 8300.10, Airworthiness Inspector Handbook, and Advisory Circular (AC) 120-16D, Continuous Airworthiness Maintenance Programs. These documents will be revised to incorporate the information to address each of these safety recommendations. It is anticipated that the order will be revised by April 1998 and the AC by October 1998. I will provide the Board with copies of these documents as soon as they are revised. As an immediate response, the FAA will issue a flight standards handbook bulletin to address specific programs, procedures, information, and training to assist maintenance, shipping, and stores personnel in identifying or recognizing aircraft components or consumable material that contains hazardous materials. The bulletin will provide information, guidance, and precautions regarding specific hazards associated with aircraft components or consumable materials that are to be moved, stored, or handled by air carrier or maintenance provider personnel. It is anticipated that the bulletin will be issued in November 1997. I will provide the Board with a copy of the bulletin as soon as it is issued.