Interpretation Guidelines of the CAMTS Standards….
Issue: # 001
Date: July 22, 2016
Reference: 10th Edition Standards
It has come to our attention that the following standard has been interpreted to mean that the fire extinguishers in the Bell 407 and Agusta aircraft, for example, must be moved, or another fire extinguisher must be placed in the medical crew quarters. The standard, however, speaks to accessibility as follows:
“02.03.07 Safety and Environment
2. Equipment and Operations Around the Transport Vehicle
l. A fire extinguisher must be accessible to medical transport personnel and vehicle operator while in motion.”
The purpose of the standard is to assist in extinguishing a fire on board in the event the pilot is incapacitated or otherwise occupied. The problem is fire extinguishers are understandably designed to be within the pilot’s reach and are considered part of aircraft as listed on the certificate. Adding another fire extinguisher is not possible without getting either an STC or a FAA field approval (337). The CAMTS Board of Directors understands this and does not base an accreditation decision on this type of compliance issue with one specific standard. It may be and remain an outlier to the standard but in terms of interpreting this standard – Site Surveyors should be asking crew members how they would reach the fire extinguisher during flight in an emergency situation. If it is possible – even though it may not be readily accessible – it meets the standard.
If it is not at all possible, it may remain an outlier without negatively impacting accreditation. Remember accreditation is based on substantial compliance with the standards – not 100% compliance.