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Old 04-12-2019, 12:11 AM   #1  
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Question New pilot & Monocular Vision

Hello aviators,

I have had a life long love with aviation from the time I was 4 or 5 years old. took a few flying lessons when I was 12 and a few when I was 25. When I was in ROTC I suffered a catastrophic eye injury to my left eye which resulted in a retinal detachment (since fixed PERMANENTLY with a Scleral buckle) and a corneal failure. This cost me my upcoming military career as a SIGNIT EW Officer but that was YEARS ago.

I was told by a few people that I would also never be able to drive a car or fly a plane. I foolishly believed them about the plane, but when a car is necessary to daily life where I live, I quickly cross referenced that and found that to be a flat out lie.

It was not until a few days ago that I just decided to look up what the official FAA statement is on flying with 1 eye, as it turns out the FAA does not really care so long as you can perform your airmanship duties correctly.

"An applicant will be considered monocular when there is only one eye or when the best corrected distant visual acuity in the poorer eye is no better than 20/200. An individual with one eye, or effective visual acuity equivalent to monocular, may be considered for medical certification, any class, through the special issuance section of part 67 (14 CFR 67.401)."
- FAA Website

Definition of Part 67 (14 CFR 67.401) by Cornell Law - https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/14/67.401


As you can see I have researched this pretty well, but I would like some knowledgeable pilots that may have dealt with something like this or know someone who has and what is entailed here.

Quick BIO about my other histories.

NO Criminal Record (1 speeding ticket, 1 failure to yield right of way, both are over a decade ago)

Medical History is clear and healthy outside of the 1 eye injury

No Psychological issues or medication associated with such


I have been dealing with an eye that has less than 20/200 vision for over a decade now, I am accustomed to "the offset" that it causes.

Do you think I am chasing a wasted dream or do I actually have a shot at becoming a pilot?

I am not doing this for the money, I am doing this because I love flying, I do flight simulation in my spare time and I go to Sun N Fun when I can. There is something about flying that is just peaceful to me, it's like I belong up there or something, I really can't describe it. Yes, it's 100% my fault for not doing research into medical waivers, something I am kicking myself for, but at 32 I am quite sure I can still have a long aviation career IF I can pass the medical.

Any and all thoughts and suggestions are greatly appreciated!

Thanks!
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Old 04-12-2019, 05:43 AM   #2  
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You should be fine.... read this, and talk to an AME:

https://www.faa.gov/about/office_org.../appeals/soda/
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Old 04-12-2019, 06:34 AM   #3  
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Lots of monocular flyers out there. After six months or so you will have learned alternate means of compensating for the loss of stereoptic depth perception. The FAA will not be a huge problem. But getting on at some of the majors will be. United Airlines fought and won a case that went to the Supreme Court about requiring uncorrected visual acuity of no worse than 20/100 in BOTH eyes.

https://biotech.law.lsu.edu/cphl/art...da-sutton.html

Since then the law has been changed and with it UALs policy, but there are still majors that require corrected visual acuity of 20/20 BILATERALLY. From the American Airlines website, by way of example:

Quote:
Here is what it takes to be a successful pilot at American:

· Excellent communication skills and quick and accurate decision making

· Close attention to detail

· Minimum age of 23

· Ability to work varying hours of the day or night, on weekends and holidays

· Must be able to secure appropriate airport authority and/or Customs security badges

· Fulfillment of FAA criminal background checks

· Ability to learn and work with PEDs

· Distance vision corrected to 20/20 and near vision corrected to 20/40 or better in each eye

· Current Unrestricted Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) rating (multi-engine)

· Valid FCC Restricted Radio Telephone Operator permit
Not saying you might not be able to get in at SOME major, or even at American if you took them to court, but it will be more difficult to do at some of them (certainly American) if your situation becomes known to them and as has already been shown at United, these guys have the means and motivation to take this all the way to SCOTUS.

Which doesn’t mean you can’t be a pilot or that there wouldn’t be lots of commercial flying opportunities open to you. Just wanted to give you a small dose of realism.

At the upper levels a bias still exists for the steely eyed fighter pilot with 20/15 uncorrected vision in both eyes. You’ll be fighting that bias more than most, if the employer becomes aware of your medical issue.
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Old 04-12-2019, 08:38 AM   #4  
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Thanks for all the replies, while I am sure many people on here strive for "the majors", that is not a goal that I have per-se.

I actually have a goal working for Silver Airways as I live around KSRQ and driving to Tampa is not that bad. Silver is also buying 60 of my favorite aircraft, ATR's, and their routes are SE USA and the Caribbean. From what I understand the regional airlines are not very picky at all for their candidates and I am perfectly fine with making 80k-90k per year which is nearly double what my wife makes.
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Old 04-12-2019, 08:45 AM   #5  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spartan0536 View Post
Thanks for all the replies, while I am sure many people on here strive for "the majors", that is not a goal that I have per-se.

I actually have a goal working for Silver Airways as I live around KSRQ and driving to Tampa is not that bad. Silver is also buying 60 of my favorite aircraft, ATR's, and their routes are SE USA and the Caribbean. From what I understand the regional airlines are not very picky at all for their candidates and I am perfectly fine with making 80k-90k per year which is nearly double what my wife makes.
Good on you, mate. Go see an AME, get a SODA, and go for it.
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Old 04-12-2019, 07:50 PM   #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Excargodog View Post
Good on you, mate. Go see an AME, get a SODA, and go for it.
Thanks, looking forward to actually start flying again, I miss being in the air.
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