§ 121.629 – Operation in icing conditions.

[Doc. No. 6258, 29 FR 19222, Dec. 31, 1964, as amended by Amdt. 121-231, 57 FR 44942, Sept. 29, 1992; Amdt. 121-253, 61 FR 2615, Jan. 26, 1996]

(a) No person may dispatch or release an aircraft, continue to operate an aircraft en route, or land an aircraft when in the opinion of the pilot in command or aircraft dispatcher (domestic and flag operations only), icing conditions are expected or met that might adversely affect the safety of the flight.

(b) No person may take off an aircraft when frost, ice, or snow is adhering to the wings, control surfaces, propellers, engine inlets, or other critical surfaces of the aircraft or when the takeoff would not be in compliance with paragraph (c) of this section. Takeoffs with frost under the wing in the area of the fuel tanks may be authorized by the Administrator.

(c) Except as provided in paragraph (d) of this section, no person may dispatch, release, or take off an aircraft any time conditions are such that frost, ice, or snow may reasonably be expected to adhere to the aircraft, unless the certificate holder has an approved ground deicing/anti-icing program in its operations specifications and unless the dispatch, release, and takeoff comply with that program. The approved ground deicing/anti-icing program must include at least the following items:

(1) A detailed description of—

(i) How the certificate holder determines that conditions are such that frost, ice, or snow may reasonably be expected to adhere to the aircraft and that ground deicing/anti-icing operational procedures must be in effect;

(ii) Who is responsible for deciding that ground deicing/anti-icing operational procedures must be in effect;

(iii) The procedures for implementing ground deicing/anti-icing operational procedures;

(iv) The specific duties and responsibilities of each operational position or group responsible for getting the aircraft safely airborne while ground deicing/anti-icing operational procedures are in effect.

(2) Initial and annual recurrent ground training and testing for flight crewmembers and qualification for all other affected personnel (e.g., aircraft dispatchers, ground crews, contract personnel) concerning the specific requirements of the approved program and each person's responsibilities and duties under the approved program, specifically covering the following areas:

(i) The use of holdover times.

(ii) Aircraft deicing/anti-icing procedures, including inspection and check procedures and responsibilities.

(iii) Communications procedures.

(iv) Aircraft surface contamination (i.e., adherence of frost, ice, or snow) and critical area identification, and how contamination adversely affects aircraft performance and flight characteristics.

(v) Types and characteristics of deicing/anti-icing fluids.

(vi) Cold weather preflight inspection procedures;

(vii) Techniques for recognizing contamination on the aircraft.

(3) The certificate holder's holdover timetables and the procedures for the use of these tables by the certificate holder's personnel. Holdover time is the estimated time deicing/anti-icing fluid will prevent the formation of frost or ice and the accumulation of snow on the protected surfaces of an aircraft. Holdover time begins when the final application of deicing/anti-icing fluid commences and expires when the deicing/anti-icing fluid applied to the aircraft loses its effectiveness. The holdover times must be supported by data acceptable to the Administrator. The certificate holder's program must include procedures for flight crewmembers to increase or decrease the determined holdover time in changing conditions. The program must provide that takeoff after exceeding any maximum holdover time in the certificate holder's holdover timetable is permitted only when at least one of the following conditions exists:

(i) A pretakeoff contamination check, as defined in paragraph (c)(4) of this section, determines that the wings, control surfaces, and other critical surfaces, as defined in the certificate holder's program, are free of frost, ice, or snow.

(ii) It is otherwise determined by an alternate procedure approved by the Administrator in accordance with the certificate holder's approved program that the wings, control surfaces, and other critical surfaces, as defined in the certificate holder's program, are free of frost, ice, or snow.

(iii) The wings, control surfaces, and other critical surfaces are redeiced and a new holdover time is determined.

(4) Aircraft deicing/anti-icing procedures and responsibilities, pretakeoff check procedures and responsibilities, and pretakeoff contamination check procedures and responsibilities. A pretakeoff check is a check of the aircraft's wings or representative aircraft surfaces for frost, ice, or snow within the aircraft's holdover time. A pretakeoff contamination check is a check to make sure the wings, control surfaces, and other critical surfaces, as defined in the certificate holder's program, are free of frost, ice, and snow. It must be conducted within five minutes prior to beginning take off. This check must be accomplished from outside the aircraft unless the program specifies otherwise.

(d) A certificate holder may continue to operate under this section without a program as required in paragraph (c) of this section, if it includes in its operations specifications a requirement that, any time conditions are such that frost, ice, or snow may reasonably be expected to adhere to the aircraft, no aircraft will take off unless it has been checked to ensure that the wings, control surfaces, and other critical surfaces are free of frost, ice, and snow. The check must occur within five minutes prior to beginning takeoff. This check must be accomplished from outside the aircraft.