Recent FAA Circular Focuses On Human Factors Training Development

New FAA circular is intended to help MROs create and maintain their own human factors training programs.

The FAA published draft Advisory Circular (AC) 120-72A, Maintenance Human Factors Training, in December. The proposal provides a compilation of sources to assist certificate holders to create and maintain their own human factors training programs and would replace the 16-year-old AC 120-72, Maintenance Resource Management Training.

William Johnson, FAA chief scientific and technical advisor for human factors in aircraft maintenance systems, stated that the purpose of the revised AC is to provide resources rather than offer outlines and sample materials: “The original AC [120-72] emphasized organizational issues,” he says. “The revision provides content that would fulfill international training requirements and support the evolution of aviation topics like safety management systems, voluntary reporting and the ‘new’ FAA compliance philosophy.”

While FAA regulations do not require human factors training, many MROs adopt such programs for commercial reasons or to comply with other national aviation authority requirements such as European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) Part 145. Since the U.S./EASA bilateral agreement in 2011, the FAA has released and revised inspector guidance to evaluate human factors programs for repair stations with EASA approval.

Comments on the proposal closed Dec. 30. 

— Crystal Maguire

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