FAA Order 7110.659A, effective June 1, will recategorize the guidelines air traffic controllers use to provide proper wake turbulence separation. The new standards are expected to increase airport capacity while reducing both arrival and departure delays.
Federal Aviation Administration
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration will rebuild one of its terminal radar approach control (Tracon) facilities on New York’s Long Island, serving the world’s busiest airspace. But the modernized Tracon is not for now the Integrated Control Facility (ICF) the agency plans under a nationwide ATC facilities consolidation effort.
Battle lines have formed in the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) review of the $10,000 fine the FAA charged Raphael Pirker for operating a small unmanned aircraft. Six parties filed “friend of the court” amicus briefs by the NTSB’s May 16 deadline, including a coalition of major news media organizations supporting Pirker’s position.
The National Transportation Safety Board on May 13 released the findings of its Special Investigation Report on the safety of agricultural aircraft operations, which can involve flying as low as 10 feet above the ground. That kind of flying presents risks from ground-based obstacles with scant room for error.
The Department of Transportation’s recent requirement for first officers to have 1,500 hours is taking its toll on air service to some parts of the U.S, a Regional Airline Association spokesman said during a recent hearing on air service to small communities before the U.S. House aviation subcommittee. Brian Bedford, president and CEO of Republic Airways, urged the FAA and Congress to work together to fix the pilot supply challenges created by the new qualification issue by allowing structured credit for more of the logged flight hours required for an air transport pilot certificate.
The National Air Transportation Association’s Aircraft Systems and Maintenance Technology Committee has formed a working group to address the long-standing issue of a lack of consistency among FAA FSDOs with regard to aircraft conformity inspections when adding an aircraft to a Part 135 operating certificate.
Having lost the first round of its attempt to fine Raphael Pirker for using a flying wing to take video, the FAA plans to issue a public notice reaffirming its authority to regulate the use of small unmanned aircraft. The agency is appealing a March ruling by a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) administrative law judge rejecting the $10,000 fine.
U.S. congressional leaders, addressing those attending the Unmanned Systems Conference in Orlando on Tuesday, said Congress will likely expedite provisions of the 2012 FAA Modernization and Reform Act that require the FAA to introduce unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) into the nation’s airspace.
U.S. FAA Administrator Michael Huerta on Tuesday made his second appearance in three years at the annual Regional Airline Association Convention.
Commercial use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) is possible once manufacturers demonstrate the airworthiness of their designs, according to the manager of the FAA’s UAS Integration Office. “It’s a two-way street,” advised Jim Williams. “The FAA can’t pull the industry up.”