Airworthiness Authority overview

In Canada, national and international obligations related to the airworthiness management of military aviation lie with the Minister of National Defence (MND). These obligations are expressed in the Aeronautics Act. To achieve the objectives of the Act, the MND directed the creation of the DND/CAF Airworthiness Program, published in 1998, under the official name of Department of National Defence/Canadian Forces Airworthiness Programme (NDID number A-GA-005-000/AG-001).

Serving as a roadmap for the Canadian military aviation, the program describes the rules surrounding the safety of the design, manufacture, maintenance, materiel support and operation of DND-registered aircraft. The program also documents the assignment of specific authorities and associated responsibilities and accountabilities. The Airworthiness Authority (AA) stands at the top of the program governance pyramid.

The AA:

On the direction of the MND, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) has designated the responsibility of managing the entire program to the Chief of Air Force Staff (C Air Force), who is the overall Airworthiness Authority (AA) for the Canadian military aviation.

The following image is a graphic representation of the interaction between all four authorities (the AA, the OAA, the TAA and the AIA), under the umbrella of the Aeronautics Act and the DND/CAF Airworthiness Program.

Chart depicting interactions between regulatory authorities responsible for DND/CAF Airworthiness Program, under the jurisdiction of the Aeronautics Act

The image shows the Aeronautics Act and the Airworthiness Authority at the top, with three slightly overlapping circles right underneath them, each representing an airworthiness authority. The first circle represents the Airworthiness Investigative Authority, responsible for Flight Safety and accident/incident regulations. The second represents the Technical Airworthiness Authority, with its design, maintenance, manufacture and materiel support regulations and the last circle is that of the Operational Airworthiness Authority, with its operations and facilities regulations. The main overlapping area, which applies to the Technical and Operational Authorities, is that of “Personnel Regulations”.