Letter: Change in regulations knee-jerk reaction by Congress after accident
I am a Federal Aviation Administration licensed aircraft dispatcher as well as an FAA licensed commercial pilot.
I am writing in response to the Saturday article titled “UND students eyeing new FAA rules as future pilots” by Jennifer Johnson of Forum Communications.
I would like to clarify the statement that was made in the article that the FAA is implementing tougher requirements requiring 1,500 hours of flight time. It is not the FAA that is implementing this requirement although they will be the ones charged with enforcing the rule.
Congress has mandated this change in the name of safety. Nowhere in the article was this mentioned.
Congress has mandated this action as a knee-jerk reaction to an accident that occurred in Clarence Center, N.Y., on Feb. 12, 2009.
This mandate does nothing to increase safety in the aviation industry. Both pilots operating this particular flight were Airline Transport Pilots with considerably more than the 1,500 hours that Congress says will create a safer industry.
This was a terrible accident and my heart goes out to those that lost loved ones on that tragic night but the issue with safety is not the number of hours that the pilots have in their log book.
One of the real issues with aviation safety is with the hours of service and how that airlines manipulate the rules to their benefit but that is not something that Congress or the FAA wants to address with honesty.
Andrew Richter, Indianapolis