NTSB Addresses Alcohol-Related Incidents

 - June 26, 2007, 10:41 AM

In response to “a number of accidents” in which the pilots had omitted or lied about substance/alcohol dependency during medical evaluations, the NTSB is recommending three policy changes to the FAA: the agency should require pilots to submit full arrest and court records to medical examiners, including details such as blood alcohol and behavior at the time of the offense; ensure that complete medical records from the Aerospace Medical Certification Division are provided to medical examiners; and require all pilots diagnosed with substance/alcohol dependency to be evaluated regularly in accordance with special-issuance medical certificates. An NTSB spokesman told AIN that the recommendations “are all about information” and “getting that information consistently to the FAA. The substance-dependency issue has not been adequately addressed by current regulations,” he said. The FAA says it has “not seen any data to support the idea that pilots’ making false statements on medical certificate applications is rampant,” but the agency will “take a serious look at the recommendations and determine a response within 90 days.”