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SkyWestPilot1
09-12-2007, 05:26 AM
Did a search for this and found nothing. My 12 year old thinks he wants to be an airline pilot, after flying for the military. The problem is (aside from the pay) I'm pretty sure he's color blind. I had him do some tests on the net for this and he couldn't see what he needed to. Anyone know if he can get a 1st class medical with this problem. I've done some searching in general and it looks like a person can do a light gun test and if you can see the signals you can get a waiver to never have to test for color vision again. True or false? I'm heading down the fsdo later to talk to the FAA. I'm thinking the military is out, but am hoping he can still fly commercially. Thanks in advance.


UnlimitedAkro
09-12-2007, 05:44 AM
I had a student years ago who was color blind. He had to do a special medical flight with an FAA examiner that transitioned from day into night time just to get his medical to be able to solo. They ended up issuing a medical with a restriction of no flying at night. After he got his private he did another medical flight with an FAA inspector and got the night restriction lifted. He made a lot of phone calls, did a lot of research and I know it wasnt easy for him. Last I had talked to him he was working on his instrument and was going to try to get his commercial and multi with hope of being able to fly airlines one day (though I was a little doubtful). I have not heard of anyone flying 121 color blind though myself...

skidmark
09-12-2007, 05:44 AM
I am color blind myself and an airline pilot it is no big deal. I ran into the same thought when I found out when I got my first medical. All your son needs to get is a "SODA" statement of demonstrated ability from the faa. What the do is go out on the ramp and shine the light gun from the tower. If he sees the red light and green are different then he's good to go. It is that easy. Then when he goes and sees the doctor he shows this SODA to him so he's exempt from that test. I am what they call "RED GREEN" deficent. I have no problem see red and green just the test the doctor gave me. As far as the Military I have no idea what to tell you except just so everyone knows COLOR BLIND PEOPLE DON'T SEE IN BLACK AND WHITE! I just think we would be back interior decorators. PM me if you have any more questions and don't worry about it.


SkyWestPilot1
09-12-2007, 05:54 AM
Thanks for that, He was born with the flying bug and I was hoping I wouldn't have to break his heart. Thanks again. I'll look into the soda statement.

UnlimitedAkro
09-12-2007, 05:54 AM
I am color blind myself and an airline pilot it is no big deal. I ran into the same thought when I found out when I got my first medical. All your son needs to get is a "SODA" statement of demonstrated ability from the faa. What the do is go out on the ramp and shine the light gun from the tower. If he sees the red light and green are different then he's good to go. It is that easy. Then when he goes and sees the doctor he shows this SODA to him so he's exempt from that test. I am what they call "RED GREEN" deficent. I have no problem see red and green just the test the doctor gave me. As far as the Military I have no idea what to tell you except just so everyone knows COLOR BLIND PEOPLE DON'T SEE IN BLACK AND WHITE! I just think we would be back interior decorators. PM me if you have any more questions and don't worry about it.

awesome!

.

dn_wisconsin
09-12-2007, 06:06 AM
Like skidmark im also red green deficient. the only problem i ever had was actually getting the faa to come out to do the light gun test. you have to get the medical and if your son gets a restriction from the deficiency, write oklahoma and keep bothering them everyday until they get to it. in the mean time take your son out to the airport and go through all the lights and if its a small tower most likely when they arent busy they will even shine the light gun for you too. then when the day come the local faa will send out an examiner and it takes about 10 minutes, and he will get a waiver for the rest of his life. hey if saves me 5 mins on my medical, no color part exam. anything else pm me, oh and so far no airline has cared that i have a waiver, but if they dont ask your not required to tell because the medical has no restrictions.

skidmark
09-12-2007, 06:19 AM
Wisconsin is right no airline cares because there are no restrictions. However don't have the FAA come to you go to them. I went to the Fort Worth FSDO. They are always at the fsdo normal hours the test took 30 seconds and the paperwork about 10 minutes and I was done. and going to a small tower to get the light gun test prior to the real one is a excellent idea bring a handheld radio to talk to the tower.

GhettoBeechjet
09-12-2007, 06:44 AM
I am in this boat too. I found out I was deficient when I took my first medical a long time ago. Apparently there is more than one acceptable color vision test. The AME that initally caught this sent me to an opthomoligist for a Farnsworth Lantern Test which I passed with no problem. It took a couple of months but I got an unristricted medical in the mail from Oklahoma City along with a letter that says I don't need to take the color test in the future. Because I passed an acceptable test I didn't end up with a waiver. I recently interviewed at a major airline and they didn't ask for anything beyond a copy of my medical. I would recommend when you take him for his medical have him apply for a first class so whatever waiver you get is good for any class of medical in the future.

ACEFLYERSWA
09-12-2007, 07:09 AM
SkywestPilot, It is color deficient not color blindness, someone in your family also has the same thing, probably your dad, as the doctor told me it is passed down through the male genes. Continental I think will not hire someone with a waiver. I think by the time your son is old enough to work for a major it will be no big deal.

SkyWestPilot1
09-12-2007, 07:43 AM
Wow, thanks for all the help, I really appreciate it.

MoonShot
09-12-2007, 07:51 AM
I use to have the SODA for my color vision and a few years back went through the EAA (yes with an E) to get a "letter of competence" vs. the SODA. FWIW, my new AME said that they prefer to see this letter to the SODA after the FedEx 727 crash being somewhat attributed to the color blind FO (this month's AOPA mag. has the story). Its just a paperwork deal. The EAA took care of it no problem. I just keep that letter on file at the AME and never have to take the color test.

To get the SODA, I did the light gun test too. CAUTION though, if you fail this test, you'll always have the night flying restriction on the medical. If you try the other approved tests, I think that you can take them until you pass. Someone correct me if I'm wrong. In hindsight, I'd have done the light gun test last.

rickair7777
09-12-2007, 07:53 AM
It is worth noting however, that all military flying jobs (and most non-flying officer jobs) will require perfect color vision. They are quite anal about this and it is not waiverable, so you may want to steer your kid towards the civilian end. He could still go enlisted in some specialties, if he wanted to serve and get VA education benies.

SkyWestPilot1
09-12-2007, 08:37 AM
Thats what I figured. At 12 I can still influence him alot, thats why I thought I'd better find this out now. Thanks again.

Thedude
09-12-2007, 01:54 PM
Continental I think will not hire someone with a waiver.


That is illegal under the ADA.

JetJocF14
09-12-2007, 07:11 PM
SkyWestPilot1: When I was 16 and learning to fly I had a tough time passing the Faa color blind test and was initially going to get a third class with no night flying stamped on it. Really was going to put a dampner on my airline dreams. Somehow passed the retest.

Later when I was flying Tomcat fighters for the Navy I discovered as mentioned above that the Navy uses a Farnsworth Latern setup for the colorblind test. It is a device that shoots out 2 colored light like red over white or green over green, or white over white. In fact the other way which are called psudocromatic plates is the find the number in the circle. This is the test most FAA doc's use but in fact the Navy does not consider psudocromatic plates to be a valid test. Also a lot of people have a tough time reading the number unless it really pops out at you.

So in a nustshell after almost 700 carrier landings and about a third of them at night. I've been flying for the airlines for the past 22 years. Have your son tested using other means. Good luck.........

P.S. Thank god the spelling gene isn't connected to the eye gene or I'd really be screwed.

motoboy
09-13-2007, 07:47 PM
SkyWestPilot1: When I was 16 and learning to fly I had a tough time passing the Faa color blind test and was initially going to get a third class with no night flying stamped on it. Really was going to put a dampner on my airline dreams. Somehow passed the retest.

Later when I was flying Tomcat fighters for the Navy I discovered as mentioned above that the Navy uses a Farnsworth Latern setup for the colorblind test. It is a device that shoots out 2 colored light like red over white or green over green, or white over white. In fact the other way which are called psudocromatic plates is the find the number in the circle. This is the test most FAA doc's use but in fact the Navy does not consider psudocromatic plates to be a valid test. Also a lot of people have a tough time reading the number unless it really pops out at you.

So in a nustshell after almost 700 carrier landings and about a third of them at night. I've been flying for the airlines for the past 22 years. Have your son tested using other means. Good luck.........

P.S. Thank god the spelling gene isn't connected to the eye gene or I'd really be screwed.

I actually had no night flying restrictions placed on my student pilot certificate, even if I eventually get this waivered by the FAA could it negatively effect a possible airline career?

JetJocF14
09-14-2007, 02:57 AM
I don't think so. If you can see the colors you can see the colors. That dosen't mean some airlines won't give you a ration of s*it. When I was interveiwing at A/A and doing the color test, nurse Rachet told me I was color blind. I said I'm not I have over 700 carrier landings and the Navy dosen't let people who might be land on aircraft carriers. Especially at night. Still had to get a letter from my flight surgeon and this was where I was introduced to the reason the navy uses the Farnsworth Latern system.

After I sent in the letter to A/A I was called in for phase-2.

Good Luck............;)

motoboy
09-14-2007, 09:01 AM
Cool, thanks alot.

rickair7777
09-14-2007, 10:56 AM
That is illegal under the ADA.

That's what you might think. However...many airlines publish hiring mins that exclude waivers or restrictions (other than corrective lenses). In the late 90's the airlines spent a great deal of money and fought some major legal battles to ensure that the ADA will not be applied to airline pilots in most cases.

The key cases involved the requirement for vision that was 20/100 uncorrected. This used to be the FAA standard for a 1st. Class Medical, but the FAA dropped this requirement in the mid-90's and went to the standard used today: Correctable to 20/20. Several majors (UA and AA for sure) decided they wanted to keep the 20/100 uncorrected requirement and rejected some applicants who held a first class medical. Some of these pilots sued under ADA, and the end result was this:

The ADA only applies to disabilities which significantly impair the person's daily living. 20/400 vision was determined to not impair normal living because it can easily be fixed with glasses/contacts. Therefore the ADA did not apply to these pilots. I assume color-vision issues would also be found to not impair daily living.

Basically anything that would actually impair daily living to the point of qualifying for the ADA would probably disqualify you from a first class medical anyway.

The good news is that I think all of the airlines (except probably AA) have dropped the 20/100 uncorrected requirement, which was silly to begin with.

rickair7777
09-14-2007, 11:00 AM
I actually had no night flying restrictions placed on my student pilot certificate, even if I eventually get this waivered by the FAA could it negatively effect a possible airline career?

It depends on the nature of the waiver...many airlines will not accept a medical with a waiver (see their web pages). In your case you would want to get a letter of competence from the FAA authorizing an AME to issue you an unrestricted first class based on previous demonstrated ability to see colors. An airline would only see a clean first class medical in that case.

nightrider
09-14-2007, 11:25 PM
I got a soda for color vision deficiencies and I now fly an a300
for a major airline it won't stop him in civilian airlines.

Good luck

Planespotta
09-16-2007, 05:12 PM
nurse Rachet told

Haha ;) The message you have entered is too short

Nightsky
09-22-2007, 10:24 PM
I also have a SODA for color deficiency. I actually had no clue I had any color vision problems whatsoever prior to taking my first aeromedical exam. I never had a clue and everyone close to me, ie family, said they were surprised also as they never noticed problems with my color identification. Apparently however, certain shades jumbled up together give me problems. I hate those color dot tests now. It really crushed me when I found out. Thank god I had good doc. He told me he'd get a hold of the local FSDO and see if they could do an alternate test (light gun signals). This was in the mid '90's fyi. Anyway, it took about 6 months, but they finally got back to me and I passed no problem. The examiner even started asking me colors of every damn thing in sight - and I got them all right. He said he was surprised I even had color vision problems.

Anyway, having this color vision soda has not been a problem at the regional level - but I must admit I'm concerned for when it comes time to hit up the majors. I also have heard of CAL outright dequaling other color vision soda guys. In hindsight, I wish I would have not gotten the SODA and instead would have gotten one of the letters another poster talked about. I'm upfront with my SODA - in each interview process I made sure they knew about it. I didn't want it to seem like I was hiding anything.

So nightrider - I'm curious, did you tell your current employer? I ask this because I hear so many conflicting opinions. I've personally come across at least a dozen other pilots with SODA's and 50/50 said they only presented the unrestricted medical vs those like me who presented the medical and soda. It seems like most majors do their own medical test anyway and will find out no matter what, and I wondered if a SODA is acceptable to their examiner.

motoboy
10-02-2007, 12:59 PM
Is it a big deal to ask the tower for a light gun demo before contacting the FAA just to be sure?

rickair7777
10-03-2007, 09:19 AM
Is it a big deal to ask the tower for a light gun demo before contacting the FAA just to be sure?

Nope. try to do it when they are not busy. You could do it from anywhere you can see the tower using an airplane radio or a handheld. You could also call them on your cell phone, and just tell them where you are so they can aim the gun.

Pilotpip
10-03-2007, 10:40 AM
Is it a big deal to ask the tower for a light gun demo before contacting the FAA just to be sure?

Nope. Used to do it with students on night flights all the time. Our tower appreciated it and asked the school to do it more often (apparently I was the only instructor doing this). Give the tower a call, explain your purpose and they should be happy to help. Just make sure you don't try and do it during a busy period at your local airport.

motoboy
10-03-2007, 07:09 PM
Thanks guys.

srleslie
12-06-2007, 07:45 PM
It depends on the nature of the waiver...many airlines will not accept a medical with a waiver (see their web pages). In your case you would want to get a letter of competence from the FAA authorizing an AME to issue you an unrestricted first class based on previous demonstrated ability to see colors. An airline would only see a clean first class medical in that case.

How do I do this, get this letter of competence, without passing one of the alternate color vision tests? Are you saying you can do this without taking one of the tests?

Nightsky
12-17-2007, 06:51 PM
It depends on the nature of the waiver...many airlines will not accept a medical with a waiver (see their web pages). In your case you would want to get a letter of competence from the FAA authorizing an AME to issue you an unrestricted first class based on previous demonstrated ability to see colors. An airline would only see a clean first class medical in that case.

Hey rick, just curious what airlines you know of that don't accept a waiver. I checked a few majors websites and found no mention of them.

⌐ AV8OR WANNABE
07-13-2008, 05:37 PM
I am color blind myself and an airline pilot it is no big deal ... I am what they call "RED GREEN" deficent ... COLOR BLIND PEOPLE DON'T SEE IN BLACK AND WHITE!...
Folks, do not confuse color blindness with color deficiency. Pure color blindness is very rare and there are no waivers for it. In your case you are not color blind, you are color deficient and in particular you are red - green deficient.

My cousin is color blind and he only sees, you guessed it BLACK and WHITE colors and the shades in between.

Thedude
11-04-2008, 11:36 PM
It is worth noting however, that all military flying jobs (and most non-flying officer jobs) will require perfect color vision. They are quite anal about this and it is not waiverable,.

Hmm, not quite true. I know a guy that was a F-117 driver and had a color vision waiver. I am sure what the process is in the AF but he had a waiver.

rickair7777
11-05-2008, 07:07 AM
Hmm, not quite true. I know a guy that was a F-117 driver and had a color vision waiver. I am sure what the process is in the AF but he had a waiver.

That must have been some waiver, first time I have ever heard of that.

As far as I know Navy/USMC/USCG will not comission ANY officer with defective color vision (except staff types). The army will, but not pilots IIRC.

USMCFLYR
11-05-2008, 07:33 AM
That must have been some waiver, first time I have ever heard of that.

As far as I know Navy/USMC/USCG will not comission ANY officer with defective color vision (except staff types). The army will, but not pilots IIRC.

Thankfully for me the naval services have used the FALANT for their color vision test. Times are chaging though and currently if they try to use the cards during your phyusical you can request the FALANT. You are correct though in that you would have to pass whatever standard the service is using and I have never heard of a waiver.

USMCFLYR

⌐ AV8OR WANNABE
11-05-2008, 07:20 PM
Hmm, not quite true. I know a guy that was a F-117 driver and had a color vision waiver. I am sure what the process is in the AF but he had a waiver.
Wow, he must be the only one who ever got that kind of waiver... :rolleyes:

JIMcK
01-22-2009, 01:16 PM
I got a soda for color vision deficiencies and I now fly an a300
for a major airline it won't stop him in civilian airlines.

Good luck

Hi guys.

I'm from the UK. I'm 27. I am temporarily working at Heathrow airport in London for the engineering firm I work for, which has piqued my interest and made me research whether there is anyway round my site issues. Hence I discovered this forum.

I am green colour blind. I failed the lantern test when I got out of uni (in 04) and in the UK, under JAA medical standards, you cannot bypass the test with a SODA, thus I can't fly commercially. My defficiency means I can't distinguish between the white and green lights in the lantern test. I have no problem distinguishing between green and red or red and white.

From the descriptions on this board it appears I may well be able to pass a US SODA (e.g. the light gun test, if it is only red and green, it should not pose a problem).

I am after more information really. I would be very willing to give up my current work commitments to head to the US and train as a commercial pilot. However, this would of course be at immense expense and I first need to establish if its feasible. So I have some questions that I'd appreciate if someone could answer:

1) Can I get a SODA with my green colour blindness as I described it?

2) If I get a SODA and got a US Commercial Pilots Licence how would I seek employment? I would not be able to apply directly to UK companies as they use the JAA standards. Could I work for an American Airline/company and live in the UK?

3) How do you fund the training!?! If it is as good as certain I could get a career at the end of it I would be willing to sign up for the course, but I just wonder what the best way to finance it is.

4) Can you think of a time in a pilots life where the ability to distinguish between green and white point source lights would be of benefit?

I have emailed the JAA medical guys for an explanation as to why I am prohibited from obtaining a licence. I found the Fed Ex crash which was (highly controversially) attributed in part to the FO being red - green colour blind, but this is because he could not identify red lights, not a problem I would have. I understand why an inability to distinguish between green and red would be potentially dangerous, but I am yet to hear of a legitimate specific reason as to why specifically green colour blindness is banned, until I do it feels like unjust blanket discrimination, perhaps worth challenging.

USMCFLYR
01-22-2009, 03:20 PM
JIMcK -

I can tell you that the SODA I passed a long time ago for the FAA used all the lights - red, green and white. The FALANT test also tests all three colors.

USMCFLYR

Kilgore Trout
01-22-2009, 05:49 PM
JIMcK,
Welcome aboard APCF. You've asked a bunch of questions, ones which I hope you are able to find answers for. You mention you are in the UK, have you seen the Professional Pilot's Rumour Network website? http://www.pprune.org/
APCF seems to mostly deal with U.S. aviation issues, while the PPRuNe site has lots of info for overseas flying and aviators (it's UK based, but has forums for all areas of the globe). It's big, and covers all sorts of topics. Take some time and look around there, too.
You may find some info there as well, especially in regards to what it would entail for you as a UK citizen to start flight training in the States and maybe look for aviation employment in the US.
Anyway, best of luck to you.
Cheers,

⌐ AV8OR WANNABE
01-22-2009, 07:42 PM
1) Can I get a SODA with my green colour blindness as I described it?

JIM - here's my take on it.

First of all, learn how to spell “color” you silly Brit. :D

Soda will help those who're color deficient, not color blind (in your case - green color blind)... I'm not 100% sure but that's my understanding.

Try to contact www.************* (http://www.*************/) with your question, they have tons of experience on this subject (no, it's not free ). (Not sure why the web address is being cut out? It was widely avialiable here before but try leftseatdotcom)


2) If I get a SODA and got a US Commercial Pilots Licence how would I seek employment? I would not be able to apply directly to UK companies as they use the JAA standards. Could I work for an American Airline/company and live in the UK?

As a Euroweanie myself all I can tell you is - it ain’t easy. (yes, ain’t IS a word! ;))

If you get your ATP here in the US (commercial license alone won't get you far) you’ll need to convert it to the JAA standard and it’ll cost you lots of money. ...and you need ATP and not just commercial irline Pilot

Could you work here and live in the UK?

In theory yes, in reality no way!

I know a few Brits who fly for United and they both commute to/from London but they’re very senior and soon might not be able to do it any longer since their seniority keeps dropping (due to the furloughs at United Airlines).
It works the other way too - I know an American who lives in the good ‘ole US of A (Atlanta) and flies for an Icelandic airline and he commutes to Reykjavik, so yes it’s possible but you will be miserable and you need years and years of seniority to bid schedule that will allow that. So assume that it will NOT be possible until you turn 50 or so…

However, you left out the most important piece of information – do you have a green card (permanent residency card) or a work visa in the US? If not, you’re out of luck, you will be able to get a student visa which can probably be extended for a year or so but once it expires you cannot stay and work here in the States. (unless you jump the fence that is... )

3) How do you fund the training!?! If it is as good as certain I could get a career at the end of it I would be willing to sign up for the course, but I just wonder what the best way to finance it is.

Student loans and numerous side jobs! (also, see above regarding “green card” or work permit) After 10 years I’m still paying off my student loans and it’ll be a while before I’m done.

4) Can you think of a time in a pilots life where the ability to distinguish between green and white point source lights would be of benefit?

There are lots of green lights and switches in aviation so yes, I’d say it’s critical to be able to see the green color if that’s what you’re asking…

I think you should think twice or maybe even 3 or 4 times before you decide to pursue this career...

I usually try to encourage others but your medical problems complicate things a tad; those problems might possibly be overcome but I'm not sure… It also sounds like at the very least you'll be locked out from your home country's aviation market.

On top of that this is a very bad time to be looking for pilot jobs and it might be a while before things improve. In EU things are much better than in the US for now but they're usually a year or so behind and I think you'll see major airlines in Europe laying off their employees before you know it…

The fact you're already 27 doesn't help either because IF you were ever to pursue European airline jobs your age will not help. You’re 27 today but will be much older when you become marketable and they do age discriminate in Europe very openly, things have gotten better but they still prefer younger pilots.

So, if you find out that your medical condition can be overcome make sure that you have a work permit, enough money, etc, etc. before you decide to go for it...

Good luck to you!

JIMcK
01-23-2009, 11:42 AM
Hi guys thanks so much for the largely discouraging comments. I mean that because I want realism!

Thanks v much to USMCFLYR and Kilgore Trout, I have noted your comments and am looking on PPRuNe. I also note that the SODA is likely to include a standard 3 light test, which I will definitely fail (I have taken and failed the FALANT test), but this sounds different to the light gun test described by "skidmark" on the first page of this thread (and mentioned on the FAA links mentioned in these replies). Something I feel I may well be able to pass.

AV8OR WANNABE:

First off, learn to spell "Brit" :p

1) I believe colour blind and colour deficient are essentially the same thing. It's semantics. There is total colour blindness, but I sure as hell don't have that!

2) No I do not have a green card. A green card as you say is a permanent residency thing. I do not wish to be a US resident. For example I currently work for Parsons Brinckerhoff, an American firm, but I do not need to have US residency. But thanks I take your points.

3) Yeah thought as much, but wow, it puts my student 10k loan into proportion! Incidentally, I have a Physics degree.

4) I fully understand the plethora of coloured switches etc in a cockpit and the use of green and red signals. However, I can see green in every day usage, I can tell a green LED from a white LED without trouble. The FALANT test effectively tests your colour perception from an infinitessimal point source and on that I can't tell the difference between the white and green. There's no doubting it - I am definitely green colour blind/deficient.

However, for this to be an issue there would have to be times when you are critically required to tell green lights from white lights where they appear to be infinitessimally small, an example would potentially be if a runway you land on is lit in green and another part of the airfield is lit with white lights to tell you not to land there (or vice versa).

To my knowledge such a situation does not exist. But my knowledge is very limited, so please feel free to enlighten me. The runways I see have been lit with white or blue lights. Something I can distinguish between without issue. Likewise red and green I can distinguish between, I have never been confused by a traffic light!!! I play cricket, it is a small red ball against green grass and I have no problem picking it up etc etc.

And thanks for your comments, you are very kind to give me the time and the realism is just what I wanted really. I gave this up when I was 5 and discovered I was red and/or green colour blind (and cried wildly :p). Then at the end of uni a friend told me to try the proper FALANT etc at the CAA place and I learned I was green colour blind. I stopped then, again. But I have found several pilots who claim to be green colour blind flying under a SODA on the internet that I thought I'd have a quick check.

Any more info would be much appreciated. Particularly if you are a colour blind pilot.

Thanks.

⌐ AV8OR WANNABE
01-23-2009, 12:51 PM
....AV8OR WANNABE:

First off, learn to spell "Brit"



Ooops - corrected... ;)



1) I believe colour blind and colour deficient are essentially the same thing. It's semantics. There is total colour blindness, but I sure as hell don't have that!


According to my AME those are two very different things. He said many more men than women are color deficient (I think he mentioned about 8% of men and only 1% of females are color deficient).

Very few of those are actually color blind which means instead of having difficulty seeing a particular color they cannot differentiate it at all...

So at least here in the US if they tell you are color blind it usually means you pretty much cannot see a specific color at all. In your case, maybe in the UK they use the term blind and deficient in the same manner? I'm not sure...

For example the AME told my cousin (who like I said is color blind and also wanted to be a pilot) that no waiver would ever apply to him because he was color blind and not deficient. Now he sees some colors but there is one (can’t remember which) that he cannot see.


2) No I do not have a green card. A green card as you say is a permanent residency thing. I do not wish to be a US resident. For example I currently work for Parsons Brinckerhoff, an American firm, but I do not need to have US residency. But thanks I take your points.



I understand that, but without a permanent residency I seriously doubt any US airline will ever hire you because your training is a huge investment for them and they will not want to pay just for you to leave a few years later. Especially today when thousands of our pilots are furloughed and looking for just about any flying position they can get.

Plenty of "permanent residency” holders who alternate their residency throughout the years - it gives them the option to move back and forth… I used to do recruiting at a smaller regional and don’t ever recall us hiring anyone with a work visa (which is usually time limited and few if any airlines will ever agree to that restriction); however we hired several pilots with permanent residency.


3) Yeah thought as much, but wow, it puts my student 10k loan into proportion! Incidentally, I have a Physics degree.

I wish my loans were "only" 10,000… : (


4) I fully understand the plethora of coloured switches etc in a cockpit and the use of green and red signals. However, I can see green in every day usage, I can tell a green LED from a white LED without trouble. The FALANT test effectively tests your colour perception from an infinitessimal point source and on that I can't tell the difference between the white and green. There's no doubting it - I am definitely green colour blind/deficient.

However, for this to be an issue there would have to be times when you are critically required to tell green lights from white lights where they appear to be infinitessimally small, an example would potentially be if a runway you land on is lit in green and another part of the airfield is lit with white lights to tell you not to land there (or vice versa).

To my knowledge such a situation does not exist. But my knowledge is very limited, so please feel free to enlighten me. The runways I see have been lit with white or blue lights. Something I can distinguish between without issue. Likewise red and green I can distinguish between, I have never been confused by a traffic light!!! I play cricket, it is a small red ball against green grass and I have no problem picking it up etc etc.



Well, how is your already limited color vision affected by changing light conditions? For example dusk or night conditions? What about when you get tired after a 6 1/2 hour flight, will your color condition deteriorate even more?

I know very little about your medical condition but am trying to see it from the doctors' perspective. They must know something we don't or they’d have issued you the medical.

As pilots we fly to so many different places, often to surroundings we are not familiar with and we truly rely on each other to keep ourselves out of trouble. Taxing time for example can be very challenging at large airports that we are not familiar with or foreign airport which I fly to quite often and when you do it at night in pouring rain and the visibility is so poor already I would definitely want you to be able to see what I am seeing to back me up (and vice versa). As you know, flying is all about safety and therefore they must have determined that somehow you not seeing certain shades of the green color might endanger the flight…

I hope they made a mistake and that somehow you can get approved but aviation is all about learning from other pilots’ mistakes and therefore they must know something that we don’t.


And thanks for your comments, you are very kind to give me the time and the realism is just what I wanted really. I gave this up when I was 5 and discovered I was red and/or green colour blind (and cried wildly :p). Then at the end of uni a friend told me to try the proper FALANT etc at the CAA place and I learned I was green colour blind. I stopped then, again. But I have found several pilots who claim to be green colour blind flying under a SODA on the internet that I thought I'd have a quick check.

Any more info would be much appreciated. Particularly if you are a colour blind pilot.

Thanks.

I wouldn't rely on what other pilots say (including myself ;)) - instead once again please contact a specialist at leftseatdotcom. They deal with medical waivers here in the US and other medical issues every day and will give you an honest answer. I am not getting any kickbacks from them but if they tell you it can be done, trust me - it can be done.

Good luck!

MoonShot
01-24-2009, 07:28 AM
JIMck,

Sorry to hear about your situation. Under the old procedures, to get the SODA, one way to get it was the signal light test, basically the green, red, and white light gun used in the tower. That is just about the only time you would need to tell green from white (whiteas luck would have it, is only used on the ground to return to the starting point on the airport). You'd think that they could change that system to allow folks like you to be able to fly, but I'msure they won't. Only other time I can think of would be theairport beacon. Green/white. Good luck to you, but I would say if you can't pass the Farnsworth lantern or the signal gun, you might be out of luck.

FWIW, I went through the signal gun test about 7-8 years ago. I really hope you are able to work things out.

Take care.

USMCFLYR
01-24-2009, 09:35 AM
Another twist just came to my attention. I called the FAA and asked for a copy of my SODA from the old days (1986). They sent me back a letter saying that since my SODA was for a 2nd Class that it was not valid for a 1st Class and they sent an authoirization letter for me to take the new test. Luckily for me - the AME I used for my recent 1st Class used a color vision vision test that I did pass - so of course there is no restriction on my medical. I only wanted a copy of the SODA in the event that in the future I might come across an AME with a test that I couldn't pass. Btw - I've been passing FALANTs for 20 years!

USMCFLYR

⌐ AV8OR WANNABE
01-24-2009, 10:48 AM
Another twist just came to my attention. I called the FAA and asked for a copy of my SODA from the old days (1986). They sent me back a letter saying that since my SODA was for a 2nd Class that it was not valid for a 1st Class and they sent an authoirization letter for me to take the new test. Luckily for me - the AME I used for my recent 1st Class used a color vision vision test that I did pass - so of course there is no restriction on my medical. I only wanted a copy of the SODA in the event that in the future I might come across an AME with a test that I couldn't pass. Btw - I've been passing FALANTs for 20 years!

USMCFLYR
Wow, that reinforces what my former AME told me years ago which is always get a first class medical whether you need it or not; then let it turn into a class 2 if that's all you need (FO). He said IF I'd ever have any medical problems where a waiver or additional testing might be necessary it'd be easier to maintain the first class rather than to apply for a 'new' first class medical with the additional medical testing.

Not sure if he was correct or not (he probably just wanted the extra money a 1st class brought in... ;)) but I've always been getting first class no matter what...

USMCFLYR
01-24-2009, 01:03 PM
Wow, that reinforces what my former AME told me years ago which is always get a first class medical whether you need it or not; then let it turn into a class 2 if that's all you need (FO). He said IF I'd ever have any medical problems where a waiver or additional testing might be necessary it'd be easier to maintain the first class rather than to apply for a 'new' first class medical with the additional medical testing.

Not sure if he was correct or not (he probably just wanted the extra money a 1st class brought in... ;)) but I've always been getting first class no matter what...

That does sound like good advice. What I don't understand though (except for bureaucracy) why you would need to take the test again since nothing changes of thetest. It isn't like the light signal gun changes colors or complexity based on the classification of the medical!

USMCFLYR

⌐ AV8OR WANNABE
01-24-2009, 04:10 PM
That does sound like good advice. What I don't understand though (except for bureaucracy) why you would need to take the test again since nothing changes of thetest. It isn't like the light signal gun changes colors or complexity based on the classification of the medical!

USMCFLYR
The way it was explained to me was that most pilots look at the medical as one medical with 3 different levels of privileges, whereas the FAA looks at them as 3 separate medicals...

So I guess since the light signal test was already applied to the 2nd class medical it couldn't be "reused" for yet another medical...

rickair7777
01-25-2009, 08:36 AM
Wow, that reinforces what my former AME told me years ago which is always get a first class medical whether you need it or not; then let it turn into a class 2 if that's all you need (FO). He said IF I'd ever have any medical problems where a waiver or additional testing might be necessary it'd be easier to maintain the first class rather than to apply for a 'new' first class medical with the additional medical testing.

Not sure if he was correct or not (he probably just wanted the extra money a 1st class brought in... ;)) but I've always been getting first class no matter what...

He was giving you good advice.

Roland1990
04-14-2009, 10:36 AM
Hey guys, I first of all want to thank for being allowed to get access to this site.

I have a question, I am a 18 year old guy currently living in Slovakia and am studying Management due to one issue that kind of ruined my dream about becoming a pilot. The problem is that I have red/green colourblindness with a percentage of 15% in the region. The question is if it really kicks me out of flying because I really want to be a pilot. The funny thing is that with the ishahara plates I can see some of the numbers within the red/green combination only some pictures get me mixed up.

Please help me and give me a hint or two in order to be smarter. I am really happy about having the opertunity to ask people who have more expirience.

rickair7777
04-14-2009, 11:11 AM
Hey guys, I first of all want to thank for being allowed to get access to this site.

I have a question, I am a 18 year old guy currently living in Slovakia and am studying Management due to one issue that kind of ruined my dream about becoming a pilot. The problem is that I have red/green colourblindness with a percentage of 15% in the region. The question is if it really kicks me out of flying because I really want to be a pilot. The funny thing is that with the ishahara plates I can see some of the numbers within the red/green combination only some pictures get me mixed up.

Please help me and give me a hint or two in order to be smarter. I am really happy about having the opertunity to ask people who have more expirience.

Medical standards vary significantly from one country to the next. It all depends on where you want to fly...you will need to talk with someone who is familiar with the rules there.

Roland1990
04-14-2009, 11:45 AM
Medical standards vary significantly from one country to the next. It all depends on where you want to fly...you will need to talk with someone who is familiar with the rules there.

Hey thanks for the quick reply, I mean i aint the guy who wants to fly jumbojets and a380s I would satisfy myself with a A319/320 but the thing is I would like to fly in europe but I wouldnt mind the US. I mean the thing is that I just want to know if it is possible for me to aquire a pilots license.

Roland1990
04-15-2009, 12:42 PM
this means I am red/green colour defficient, does that mean i could be a airline pilot? because I aint colour blind in that case because I can see colours well.

BetsyMiller
10-21-2011, 07:25 AM
Before you do anything else, you should take your son to a professional to have an Ishihara Color Test (http://www.colormax.org) done. This will let you know the exact nature of his colorblindness. Then you can go from there is selecting the appropriate treatment options. Hope this helps!

lbfowlerjrmd
10-21-2011, 04:48 PM
agree w ms miller, but stay in compliance with the faa's specific requests.

ndkid
04-14-2012, 06:06 AM
Does anyone know which color vision test fedex uses on it'c company-administered exam?