Medical Surveillance Programs for Aircraft Maintenance Personnel Performing Nondestructive Inspection and Testing
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION OKLAHOMA CITY OK CIVIL AEROMEDICAL INST
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Visual inspection and nondestructive inspection and testing NDINDT are performed routinely to ensure that aircraft are maintained in safe operating condition. Inspectors must make critical judgments about the condition of aircraft and aircraft components using their eyes, basic visual aids, and complicated NDINDT techniques to detect anomalies. Failure to detect observable defects has been implicated in several aviation accidents. This study examines the medical surveillance programs employed by aircraft maintenance facilities in the United States, including specific vision standards and tests used for inspection personnel. We interviewed medical surveillance program personnel from nine major aircraft maintenance facilities and repair stations by phone or in person. The current vision standards for inspectors at each of the facilities surveyed were extracted from internal facility documents. Additionally, we reviewed the vision screening tests used for medical surveillance of inspection personnel. There were differences in the vision standards for near vision Snellen 2020 and 2025, Jaeger 1 and 2, Ortho Rater 8 distant vision 2025, 2030, none, color vision distinguish and differentiate contrast among colors, colors in the methods, normal color vision, and test intervals annual, 2-year at the facilities surveyed. Vision screening tests used in the medical surveillance programs at these facilities were equally diverse, including choice of vision screening instruments Stereo Optical, Titmus, wall charts, reading cards, and pseudoisochromatic plate color vision screening tests. Medical surveillance programs for the aircraft maintenance facilities we surveyed differed considerably for both vision standards and screening tests used to evaluate vision performance of inspectors. The use of uniform vision standards and test methods would provide quality control and facilitate a more accurate evaluation of the visual capabilities for inspection personnel.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Medicine and Medical Research