EASA 145 states that a maintenance organisation needs to posses the original documentation of the design approval holder in order to overhaul belts.
In most cases, this documentation is unavailable to the MRO companies and past test results showed that the materials used by MRO’s for the rewebbing were not equivalent to those specified by the OEM.
This led to doubts about the passengers safety and the release of the according EASA AD No. 2013:0020 that states that the rewebbing can only be done by the design approval holder or an approved design organisation.
The first EASA PAD of 2010 indicated that this measure will follow as a consequence to these studies which is why ACM immideately contacted the EASA to initiate the certification as a design organisation according EU regulation No 748/2012, Part 21, Subpart J. ACM eventually received the approval on March 25th 2011 (EASA.21J.456).
Based on this certification, ACM is the only independent organisation that is permitted to maintain and overhaul seat belts and restraint systems. The scope of the approval includes large and small aircrafts (CS 23/CS 25) and small and large rotorcraft (CS 27/CS 29), in case of 9g seats the rewebbing is classified as a minor change, 16g seats require a major change certificate.
In cooperation with the EASA and a renowned testing facility ACM developed a testing method for static and dynamic conditions to verify the equivalence with the webbing specifications of the original manufacturer.
As part of the certification and design procedure, ACM development team carefully determines and assess all specifications and safety requirements of the product and creates a complete type design as well as all documents the customer requires, which are the Service Bulletin (for instructions of continuing airworthiness), a Minor Change Approval Certificate (9g seats), and the product release with EASA Form 1.
In case of a Major Change the Minor Change Approval will be replaced by the according Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) , hence the Major Change is authorised directly by the EASA.
The priviliges we have as a design organisation enable us to reweb seat belts verified and documented, while established internal quality strategies promise advantages in terms of lead time on top of the cost-effectiveness.
Currently we run tests of various models to expand the portfolio of P/N’s and A/C types that we can reweb.
Right now, most of the models are Am-Safe, Pacific Scientific, Davis and Autoflug for the Commercial and General Aviation.