How To Write Compliant Manuals (AOC Manual Writing)
Updated: Jul 28, 2022
This short blog provides some guidance on writing fully compliant AOC Manuals. This guidance will also be useful for writing manuals for non-European jurisdictions like the UK and the Middle East.
Where to start
Before we start - The best advice we can give is not to copy and paste from someone else’s manual. The aviation authorities will pick up on this. It could damage the relationship with the inspector who is tasked with reviewing your manuals.
EASA Part ORO.MLR.100 provides guidance on the content and layout of the manual suite. The manual suite as covered by this regulation is divided into 4 volumes:
Part A – General Basic
Part B – Aircraft Operating Matters
Part C – Route Guidance
Part D – Training
Part ORO.MLR.100 provides layout instructions for AOC operators, Part NCC operators and Part SPO operators. Always make sure you use the correct Acceptable Means of Compliance when you first structure the manual:
Part NCC – use AMC 2 to ORO.MLR.100
Commercial Air traffic – use AMC3 to ORO.MLR.100
Part SPO – use AMC4 to ORO.MLR.100
Each manual should have the following:
Table of contents
List of Effective pages
Document Control Procedures
The above items are not listed in ORO.MLR.100 but are nevertheless required at the start of each manual.
Once you have created the initial word document as shown above you need to enter each header as stipulated in ORO.MLR.100. Let’s have a look at how this is done:
Below you will see an extract from ORO.MLR.100:
As you will see, chapter 0.1 has items (a) to (d) and chapter 0.2 has items (a) to (h) providing guidance on what the manual writer must include. Follow the guidance below to transfer the narrative from ORO.MLR.100 into your brand-new manual.
ADMINISTRATION AND CONTROL OF OPERATIONS MANUAL
Narrative goes here to satisfy items (a) to (d). Describe what you do and more importantly, how you will do it.
0.2 System of amendment and revision:
Narrative goes here to satisfy (a) to (h).
If it is appropriate to cover each item (a) to (h) separately you could decide numbering the sub-paragraphs as follows:
0.2.1 Amendment and revision
Narrative goes here.
0.2.2 Record of Amendments and Revisions
0.2.3 Handwritten amendments
Narrative goes here.
Continue this process for the remainder of the manual. It would be advisable to structure the entire manual first before you add the legislation.
Each chapter header should be hyperlinked, so it appears automatically in the table of contents. This can be done through the ‘references’ tab or in the home tab under ‘styles’.
Allocating regulations to the chapters
Each ORO.MLR.100 manual requirement needs to be satisfied with appropriate regulations from EU regulation 2018/1139 as amended. Once you have added these regulations you need to tailor these to your organisation.
Let’s have a look at how this is done by using CAT.OP.MPA.100 as an example:
You will note that the regulation states: ‘The operator shall ensure that’. The first thing you will need to do is to change this to the organisation in question. For example:
(a) AOC Aviation requires its commanders to ensure that:
(1) air traffic services (ATS) appropriate to the airspace and the applicable rules of the air are used for all flights whenever available; This means that Commanders must ensure the correct ATS frequency is selected and that two-way communication is established and maintained.
(2) The on-duty operations officer shall ensure that in-flight operational instructions involving a change to the ATS flight plan, when practicable, are coordinated with the appropriate ATS unit before transmission to the Commander of the aircraft.
(b) Notwithstanding (a), the use of ATS is not required unless mandated by air space requirements for operations under VFR by day of other-than complex motor-powered airplanes;
Note: if (b) does not apply to your operation, this should be removed.
Once you have added all the regulations you should also check the manual to see if it flows and if the information is presented in a logical format. Ask another nominated person to review the manual and provide feedback.
Manual Compliance Check
Before you present the manual to the aviation authorities for review you must carry out a compliance check to ensure you have not forgotten a crucial element of the regulation. Most Competent Authorities will require the manual submission to be accompanied by a compliance checklist.
To make the compilation of the compliance checklist easier it is advisable to add the regulation reference after each chapter title. A couple of commonly used options are shown below:
8.1.2 Use of Air Traffic Services (CAT.OP.MPA.100)
8.1.2 Use of Air Traffic Services
Adding the reference will allow you to do a quick search for the regulation in the manual. It will speed up the completion of the compliance checklist.
To write compliant and user-friendly manuals takes a lot of time and effort. It also requires you to have a thorough understanding of EU regulation 2018/1139. Without this knowledge, it will be very difficult to allocate the different regulations to the right areas in the operations manuals.
At Aviatica Group we have been writing manuals since 2003 and in that time, we have written hundreds of manuals for AOC’s, Part NCC, Part SPO, ATO and Maintenance Organisations. Due to our extensive experience in this field, we are able to produce fully compliant manuals quickly and efficiently whilst you focus on the day-to-day running of your company.
Contact us to get you started on your Manual
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