Chapter 12. Publications, Forms, & Records
14 CFR Part 121 — Operating Requirements: Domestic, Flag, and Supplemental Operations
Part 121 establishes the operational rules for air carriers flying for compensation or hire. A domestic operation is any scheduled operation (within the 48 contiguous states, the District of Columbia, or any territory or possession) being conducted with either a turbo-jet aircraft, an airplane having 10 or more passenger seats, or a payload capacity greater than 7,500 pounds.
A “flag" operation means any scheduled operation (operating in Alaska or Hawaii to any point outside of those states, or to any territory or possession of the United States, or from any point outside the United States to any point outside the United States) being conducted with either a turbo-jet aircraft, an airplane having 10 or more passenger seats, or a payload capacity greater than 7,500 pounds.
“Supplemental" operation means any common carriage operation conducted with airplanes having more than 30 passenger seats (if less than 30, the airplane must also be listed on the operations specifications of domestic and flag carriers), with a payload capacity of more than 7,500 pounds.
Part 121 operators are required by part 119 to have the following personnel:
There are 23 subparts and 15 appendices in this regulation; however, only two subparts (J and L) are of concern for the mechanic. Subpart J — Maintenance, Preventive Maintenance, and Alterations, identifies Special Airworthiness Requirements, which deals with many of the mechanical aspects of a passenger or cargo aircraft. Subpart L — Maintenance, Preventive Maintenance, and Alterations, requires that a part 121 operator must have an operational manual which contains the following information:
There is also a section (§121.368) added in 2002 that establishes the requirement for conducting inspections on aging aircraft. Additional §121.370 lists various transport category commercial aircraft that require FAA-ACO approval to operate beyond a specified number of flights. Both of these regulations came about following FAA and NTSB review of various commercial airline accidents.
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