All airport workers with access to airplanes and secure areas have been ordered to submit to new criminal background checks. Employers will also be asked to assist authorities in new criminal background checks of “flight-safety sensitive” personnel. The FAA is requiring the revalidation of all airport IDs to make sure they are current, genuine and correspond to the person carrying them.
Members of the Air Line Pilots Association will be asked their views on the Age 60 mandatory retirement rule for airline pilots. The union, which has historically opposed any effort to raise the retirement age, is now worried that the current financial crisis in the airline industry could cut pilots’ career earnings. ALPA pilots are concerned they might have to work in other professions or as pilots outside the U.S.
An FAA investigation of the New York Terminal Radar Approach Control (Tracon) determined that it is "more than adequately staffed for safe operations and that local union-controlled scheduling practices are inefficient and wasteful, creating overtime costs that are more than double any other air ATC facility in the country." The need for overtime was compounded, the report said, "by absences due to widespread abuse of sick leave and workers c
Reliance Aerotech Services (RAS) of Nashville, Tenn., has launched a toll-free recruitment hotline to make it easier for prospective employees to contact the company’s recruiters. RAS provides outsourced aviation maintenance personnel and integration solutions for the defense, government, business and commercial aviation markets.
The minimum percentage rate for substance-abuse testing for next year will remain at 25 percent of covered aviation employees for random drug testing and 10 percent for random alcohol testing. The rates will remain unchanged because historical data indicates that the positive rate for drug tests over the last several years has been less than 1 percent.
Proposed amendments were adopted to clarify the FAA’s anti-drug and alcohol-misuse regulations pertaining to testing requirements; reasonable cause for testing; periodic drug testing; the anti-drug program approval process; and drug- and alcohol-abuse prevention programs.
Metalworkers at Embraer’s assembly plant in São Jose dos Campos, Brazil, ended their threats of a strike last month when they agreed to accept a 17.35-percent wage hike retroactive to November 1. In late November roughly 4,000 morning-shift workers voted to enter strike mode after rejecting an offer of a 16.15-percent increase. At the time the workers demanded a 20-percent raise and a reduction in working hours from 43 to 40 hours per week.
The FAA announced today that it intends “later this year” to issue a formal notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to increase the mandatory airline pilot retirement age from 60 to 65. The planned proposal follows several other recent related actions.
The FAA determined that the minimum percentage rate for substance-abuse testing this year will remain at 25 percent of covered aviation employees for random drug testing and 10 percent for random alcohol testing. The rates will remain the same because data indicates that the positive rate for drug tests over the last two years was less than 1 percent and the positive rate for alcohol tests in the past two years was less than 0.5 percent.
If business aviation observers are on the right track, the industry is again facing a shortage of the skilled craftsmen it needs to keep up with burgeoning demand for business aircraft.
This latest labor shortage has its origins in the recession that began in 2001, when business aircraft sales dropped precipitously and thousands of skilled workers–people who had been so badly needed during the boom of the late 1990s–were laid off.