NBAA welcomed passage by the House of Representatives of H.R.3578, which compels the FAA to establish a rulemaking process before implementing any mandatory pilot-screening requirement for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) as a condition for getting a medical certificate. In November, the FAA announced a plan to begin requiring OSA screening for pilots with a body mass index of 40 or greater. “The business aviation community thanks lawmakers for passing this measure seeking a fully transparent process for any consideration of OSA screening,” said NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen.
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) says he wants the FAA to apply noise rules to all helicopters transiting the Los Angeles basin, including those flown by emergency services. “Not all law-enforcement flights are emergencies,” Schiff said during an interview with SoCal public radio station KCRW.
A Robinson R66 is being used in Colombia as a pediatric air ambulance. It is flying alongside a Westwind 1124A and Learjet 31 with Fundacion Cardiovascular de Colombia (FCV).
Doctors at FCV are using the R66 to reach pediatric patients in remote areas. The back seat of the R66 has been replaced with a bench, an incubator and other medical equipment in accordance with FAA “Form 337” rules. A typical flight of one hour replaces a ground ride of four to nine hours, which for some infants was just too long.
U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and James Inhofe (R-Okla.) have introduced legislation–S.1941–to require the FAA to follow the established rulemaking process as the agency tries to implement its obstructive sleep apnea screening rule. Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska), an original cosponsor of the bill, is a member of the Senate general aviation caucus, along with Manchin and Inhofe.
Dick Koenig, former publisher of Flying, has been tapped to head the Corporate Angel Network (CAN), the organization that arranges free flights for cancer patients to treatment centers using empty seats on corporate jets. CAN executive director Peter Fleiss is retiring, effective January 20, after leading the organization for 14 years. Fleiss will thus become director emeritus and remain actively involved during the leadership transition.
The free weight-and-balance program developed by FltPlan is available for more than 400 makes and model of aircraft and can be used either on the FltPlan website or on its iPad and Android apps. The company added 165 new makes and models to the program since March. Flight departments can share weight-and-balance profiles so all users are working with the same parameters. The iPad and Android app versions can be used offline, too. Users can also email the final results to maintain a record of the weight-and-balance calculations.
Ever since two pilots fell asleep in the cockpit of a Bombardier CRJ operating as Go! Flight 1002 during a February 2008 flight from Honolulu to Hilo, Hawaii, the NTSB has urged the FAA to tackle the issue of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) among pilots. The captain of that aircraft was diagnosed with severe OSA after the flight.
Unpopular as his crusade may be, Federal Air Surgeon Fred Tilton is right to shine a spotlight on sleep apnea in the pilot community.
The University of Florida Foundation, a not-for-profit corporation, is offering a means to dispose of a retired aircraft in an environmentally friendly manner and in a way that benefits the university’s goals.
The FAA’s plan to implement a new policy requiring screening of pilots for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) has been put on hold, pending FAA consultation with industry stakeholders, according to GA lobby groups. FAA Federal Air Surgeon Fred Tilton had planned to have aviation medical examiners begin requiring pilots with a body mass index of 40 or more to undergo mandatory OSA screening, with plans eventually to lower that threshold to 30.