The House aviation subcommittee cleared legislation yesterday that would force the FAA to follow established rulemaking processes before implementing a new requirement that some pilots be screened for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) before receiving a medical certificate. The bill, H.R. 3578, was introduced on November 21 by Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.), chairman of the Transportation Committee’s aviation subcommittee.
The Jan. 4, 2014 implementation date for new Part 117 regulations on fatigue applies only to scheduled air carriers, but many observers believe elements of the new law will eventually work their way to business aviation.
NetJets is installing the Tempus IC system–a lightweight device that connects cabin crew to ground medical facilities through the aircraft’s satellite telephone system–aboard its midsize and large-cabin fleet of business aircraft. According to a NetJets spokesperson, some of the company’s current in-service fleet of Bombardier Global 5000s and 6000s already have the Tempus equipment installed and an additional number of the fractional ownership provider’s Globals, as well as its Challenger 350s and 605s, are being fitted with the system.
Proposed legislation addressing sleep apnea will require pilots to be tested for sleep apnea, but maintenance personnel, who are not required to pass an FAA physical, are not addressed.
NBAA and AOPA welcomed legislation introduced on Thursday in the U.S. House of Representatives that would require the FAA to go through the rulemaking process before issuing any requirement for some pilots to undergo screening for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) before receiving a medical certificate. Earlier this month, Federal Air Surgeon Dr.
The U.S. federal air surgeon, Dr. Fred Tilton, plans to demand specific sleep apnea testing for airmen who fit a particular profile. Untreated sleep apnea can be disqualifying to anyone with an FAA-issued medical certificate.
By the time hypoxia is detected, it’s often too late, and the higher the cabin altitude, the less time pilots have to realize that they need to don oxygen masks.
A medical emergency on board a business jet at altitude–and how it is dealt with–presents a defining moment for any flight department. Yet not all are well-prepared, according to emergency planning specialist FrontierMedex,hich gave a briefing here at NBAA yesterday.
Among the exhibitors making their debuts at NBAA’s annual showcase is Pulsar Informatics (Booth No. C12047), which is demonstrating its new crew fatigue evaluation web application: the Aviation Fatigue Meter. According to the Philadelphia-based company, the app can be used for every kind of business aviation operation, no matter the scale or complexity, and it is described as an “easy way for people to see how any particular schedule is impacted by human fatigue factors.”
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