FAA Will Propose Pilot Retirement Age of 65

 - January 30, 2007, 10:04 AM

The FAA announced today that it intends “later this year” to issue a formal notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to increase the mandatory airline pilot retirement age from 60 to 65. The planned proposal follows several other recent related actions. Although an FAA-established panel of airline, labor and medical experts failed to reach a consensus, in response to a request for comments on the issue, the overwhelming majority of the more than 5,700 respondents were in support of increasing the mandatory age limit. The NPRM seeks to adopt the new International Civil Aviation Organization standard that allows one pilot up to age 65 provided the other pilot is under age 60. A formal rulemaking process is expected to take from 18 to 24 months, and if the age increase is adopted, as is expected, the FAA said there would be no retroactive provisions. One of the first organizations to go on record supporting the change was the Flight Safety Foundation, saying, “Raising the mandatory retirement age to 65 does not present any safety concerns, provided all pilots continue to have their health monitored through regular physicals.”