The final report of the FAA/industry rulemaking age-60 committee is now posted on the agency’s Web site. The committee was unable to reach consensus on whether to increase the mandatory retirement age of 60 for airline pilots. The report can be viewed and downloaded at www.faa.gov/media/Final_Age_60_ARC_Report_11_29_2006.pdf.
The FAA last month issued a final rule on ETOPS (extended-range twin-engine operational performance standards) that allows operators of commercial aircraft–now including Part 135–to fly virtually anywhere (up to 240 minutes single-engine flying time from a suitable diversion airport), provided the aircraft is capable of protecting passengers and flight crew during an emergency diversion of any length.
A lack of professionalism, discipline and knowledge exhibited by the two pilots flying the Pinnacle Airlines Bombardier CRJ200 that crashed in Jefferson City, Mo., on Oct. 14, 2004, directly led to the tragedy that took their lives, the NTSB has determined after more than two years of investigation.
The British Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and the FAA signed a bilateral agreement under which they will evaluate simulators for each other. In practice this means that it should be less expensive and troublesome for simulator manufacturers to get their equipment approved for use on either side of the Atlantic. For instance, the CAA will now accept training devices that are certified by the FAA and being used in the U.S.
November 25 is the comment deadline for FAA’s proposed guidance on business aircraft wet leases.
The NTSB final report on the May 2005 crash of a Mitsubishi MU-2B-25 in Hillsboro, Ore., found several causes, notably mishandling a power loss due to a lack of recent flight experience and recurrent training by the pilot. While flight logs provided by the family showed more than 500 hours operating an MU-2, the pilot’s last flight before the accident flight was 14 years earlier.
In May last year, the FAA said it would delay until January 1 this year a decision to limit “priority service” for aircraft registration in connection with conducting international flights to allow only one request per aircraft (by N-number) in any three-month period due to staffing limitations at the agency’s aircraft registration branch.
Before leaving for the Thanksgiving holiday, Congress approved fiscal year 2006 funding for the FAA totaling approximately $13.8 billion, which is $276 million above the current year and more than $1.1 billion higher than President Bush’s request.
In a November 22 letter to the European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC), the Transportation Security Administration said it has “begun the process of developing and instituting a security oversight and monitoring program for fractional ownership aircraft.
Starting February 1, owners and operators of aircraft with "questionable registrations and/or no TSA required security measures/waivers" might be denied access to the National Airspace System.