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House wants 1500hrs, sends bill back

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House wants 1500hrs, sends bill back

Old 03-26-2010, 02:28 PM
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Default House wants 1500hrs, sends bill back

H.R. 1586 Oberstar Amendment Summary
Pilot Qualifications: Requires airline pilots to hold an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certificate (1,500 minimum flight hours required). Requires the FAA to raise the minimum requirements for the ATP certificate. Requires pilot training for effective performance in: an air carrier operational environment; adverse weather conditions, including icing; high-altitude operations; and a multi-pilot crew. Enables the FAA to consider allowing certain academic training hours that may increase the level of safety above the minimum requirements to be counted towards the 1,500-hour ATP certificate requirement.
House Joins, Re-Passes FAA, Safety Bills

Press Release
House Joins, Re-Passes FAA, Safety Bills
Merged authorization bill sent back to Senate

March 25, 2010

By Jim Berard 202-226-5064

In an unusual amending process, the House today combined and reaffirmed support for two important aviation bills and returned the blended bill to the Senate, setting up the possibility of a conference committee to reconcile the Chambers’ differing versions of the legislation.

By a vote of 276-145, the House amended H.R. 1586, the Federal Aviation Administration Air Transportation Modernization and Safety Improvement Act of 2010 and ordered the bill returned to the Senate. In the process, the House replaced the Senate’s aviation language with the text of H.R. 915, the Federal Aviation Authorization Act of 2009, and H.R. 3371, the “Airline Safety and Pilot Training Improvement Act of 2009”, both of which passed the House last year.

The action sets up the possibility that the Senate and House versions of the bill can be reconciled in a conference committee or by other means.

The current FAA authorization was due to expire in 2007, but has been kept in force through a succession of extension bills. The current extension expires March 31, but a bill to extend the authorization through July 3, 2010 passed the House earlier this week and is now pending in the Senate.

Following are the prepared remarks by Rep. James L. Oberstar (Minn.), Chairman of the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and Rep. Jerry F. Costello (Ill.), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Aviation.

MARCH 25, 2010
Modernizing the air traffic control system, increasing capacity, and ensuring small communities maintain access to service are all important issues, but none of these issues could exist without a safe system. To this end, this amendment includes the provisions of H.R. 3371, the “Airline Safety and Pilot Training Improvement Act of 2009”, which improves aviation safety by increasing pilot training requirements, addressing pilot fatigue, making pilot records easier to obtain, and strengthening FAA’s safety programs. This legislation was developed as a result of the crash of Colgan Air Flight 3407, where 50 people tragically perished outside of Buffalo, New York, on February 12, 2009. In October 2009, H.R. 3371 passed the House by vote of 409 to 11.


Importantly, this bill also amends the Railway Labor Act (RLA) to clarify that employees of an “express carrier” shall be covered by the RLA only if they are employed in a position that is eligible for certification under FAA’s rules, such as mechanics or pilots, and they are actually performing that type of work for the express carrier. All other express carrier employees, such as truck drivers and baggage handlers, would be governed by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). This change would remove the disparity in current law that Federal Express drivers are governed under the RLA, which requires organization for collective bargaining on a nationwide basis, while drivers for the United Parcel Service (UPS) and other express carriers are governed by the NLRA, which permits organization on a local basis. This provision was debated in the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and agreed to by a recorded vote of 51 to 18.
MARCH 25, 2010


Second, H.R. 1586 as amended, provides consistency in collective bargaining rights throughout the express carrier industry by allowing employees working on the ground and driving trucks to organize under the National Labor Relations Act, which enables employees to organize at the local level as opposed to at the national level. Workers who are directly involved with the aircraft operation portion of those companies, like pilots and mechanics, would continue to be under the jurisdiction of the Railway Labor Act.

In addition, this legislation also includes one of the strongest aviation safety bills in decades, H.R. 3371, the “Airline Safety and Pilot Training Act of 2009”. This bipartisan legislation was written and introduced by Chairman Oberstar, Ranking Members Mica and Petri and me last year. The legislation was introduced after hearings and roundtable discussions and with the input from the families of those who perished in the Colgan accident in Buffalo, the pilot groups, airlines, the National Safety Transportation Board (NTSB), the DOT Inspector General, and Members of Congress.

Throughout 2009, the Aviation Subcommittee held hearings and roundtables on safety issues related to the Colgan accident, culminating in the introduction of H.R. 3371.

Regional airlines have been involved in the last seven fatal U.S. airline accidents, and pilot performance has been implicated in four of these accidents. Our bill took action to strengthen pilot training requirements and qualifications.

There are five important provisions I want to highlight that were originally included in H.R. 3371 and in the bill before us. First, to address pilot qualifications, the bill increases the minimum number of flight hours required to be hired as an airline pilot. Currently, a first officer only needs a Commercial Pilot’s License to be a pilot, which requires a minimum of 250 flight hours. There is a consensus that 250 hours is simply not enough experience to be an airline pilot and that safety would be improved by raising the standard.

Under our legislation, all airline pilots must obtain an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) license, which is currently only mandatory for an airline captain. The ATP requires a minimum of 1,500 flight hours and additional aeronautical knowledge, crew resource management training, and greater flight proficiency testing.

The legislation also strengthens ATP qualitative minimum requirements such as demonstrating the ability to function effectively in a multi-pilot environment and training to fly in adverse weather conditions, including icing.

Second, we mandate several outstanding NTSB recommendations related to pilot training that were discussed at our hearings, such as those on stall and upset recovery and remedial training.

Third, to ensure that airlines can make informed hiring decisions, the bill requires the FAA to create and maintain an electronic Pilot Records Database. The database will allow an airline to quickly access a pilot applicant’s comprehensive record for hiring purposes only.

Fourth, fatigue has been on the NTSB’s Most Wanted List since 1990. The bill directs the FAA to implement a new pilot flight and duty time rule, taking into account the operating environment of today’s pilots and scientific research on fatigue. As part of the rulemaking, the National Academy of Sciences is tasked with studying the effect of commuting on pilot fatigue. In addition, the bill requires air carriers to create fatigue risk management systems to proactively mitigate fatigue.

Finally, the bill requires all Internet Web sites that sell airline tickets to show, on the first web page display, the name of the air carrier operating each flight segments of a proposed itinerary.
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Old 03-26-2010, 02:33 PM
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This is excellent news. I hope the House stick to their guns and not waiver. ATP and 1500 hours for part 121 flying should be the bare minimum.

Crew duty and rest rule also needs to be revised, like yesterday. The FAA has been in bed with the airline management too long on this one. Time spent waiting for the hotel van should not count as rest period. Rest period should not start until you are checked in and inside your hotel room. High speeds at regionals should be made illegal and there should be no overnights shorter than 11 hours, and no duty day longer than 12 hours.
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Old 03-26-2010, 02:36 PM
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That's the best news I've heard all week!!! But I do believe that training requirements need to be revised as well.
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Old 03-26-2010, 02:37 PM
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Wow. They might actually make 1500 a requirement!
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Old 03-26-2010, 03:01 PM
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fantastic news!!!!!
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Old 03-26-2010, 03:12 PM
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For the first time in a while, I'm going to say this: Good job!
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Old 03-26-2010, 03:14 PM
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Definitely great news for our profession ...!
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Old 03-26-2010, 03:20 PM
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I agree. Let's quit making pilots cheaper - and paying them that way.
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Old 03-26-2010, 03:27 PM
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This is OUTSTANDING news!!!!!!!!! Could it be that all of us voting on the Congress websites and contacting our Representatives actually WORKED???!!!! My only slight concern is for those pilots working for 135 companies flying single pilot. They would meet all of the other requirements such as the icing, adverse weather etc., but the multi-pilot crew requirement may need to be looked at. Pilots obviously won't get multi-pilot time instructing or flying part 135 single pilot so where would it come from other than the airlines? Unless Congress allows training for the airlines to count as evaluating whether the applicant can work effectively in that environment, that aspect will still need to be talked about. Still GREAT news!!!!!
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Old 03-26-2010, 03:33 PM
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alright, so what i can gather from this, is that you guys are happy because 1500 hrs is a lot harder to achieve so it will keep the senior pilots who have been working a long time and deserve to be there and will make the airlines less likely to furlough them and hire new pilots who would work for cheap...more or less? please ignore my ignorance lol
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