This part specifically deals with Airworthiness Directives (ADs). An AD is an amendment to the Code of Federal Regulations. An AD must be complied with before using an affected product. In the case of a parachute, when:
- an unsafe condition exists in a product.
- the condition is likely to exist or develop in other products of the same type or design.
Under 14 CFR part 39, "No person may operate a product to which an airworthiness directive applies except in accordance with the requirements of that airworthiness directive."
In recent years, there have been a number of parachute ADs issued by the Administrator. These ADs prescribe certain actions to be taken by the parachute rigger in order to ensure the safety and function of parachutes that have been found in some manner to be defective. If the parachute rigger does not comply with the AD, the parachute rigger cannot pack, maintain, or alter the affected parachute. ADs are mailed to each certificated parachute rigger on the FAA listing. If the parachute rigger has moved and not complied with the requirements for an address change, the rigger may not receive the AD. This introduces an additional problem. Under 14 CFR part 65, subpart A—General, section 65.21, airmen must register their change of address within 30 days of moving or they are not able to exercise the privileges of their certificate.