The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has appointed Bell Helicopter as a holder of an Organization Designation Authorization (ODA). By FAA rules ODA may be granted only to organizations who have demonstrated a high level of competence in carrying out certain certification, production and airworthiness functions.
Roy Battles, a Bell senior vice president and the company's Chief Technology Officer in charge of product safety and integrity stated, "We have been working with the FAA for two years to achieve this authorization and are confident our procedures are at the highest level to successfully enable us to perform this significant responsibility on behalf of the FAA."
The ODA effort at Bell was lead by Battles, and expedited by the Civil Certification, Engineering, Flight Test and Quality Assurance departments. The new authorization enables and empowers an ODA "unit" headquartered at Bell Helicopter Fort Worth to act as a certification and production / airworthiness office, performing most of the necessary approvals on behalf of the FAA, and in accordance with Bell procedures that have been accepted by that regulatory agency.
Bell executive officers and senior management have committed the company to accept the responsibilities that accompany ODA privileges. Bell may reasonably expect substantial improvements in certification project efficiency by utilizing the authority granted to it under ODA.
ODA is the FAA's single construct for advanced organizational delegation replacing all of FAA's existing delegation mechanisms (DOA, DAS, ODAR, SFAR36).