Delaware-based Dassault Falcon Jet Wilmington and Nashville-based Averitt Aviation have received the FAA’s Diamond Award for aviation maintenance training. The FAA’s highest level award for maintenance training, the Diamond Award is a certificate of excellence given to select companies participating in the FAA Aviation Technician Training Program.
Federal Aviation Administration
Interested parties are getting more time to comment on the FAA’s controversial proposal to require all air-tour operators to be certified under Part 135 or 121, with an extension of the comment period from April 19 to June 18.
After meeting with industry representatives over several days in early March, the FAA launched a new ATC plan designed to head
off gridlock by “sharing the pain” around choke points such as New York, Chicago and Atlanta.
The National Air Traffic Controllers Association urged the Senate appropriations transportation subcommittee to ask FAA Administrator Marion Blakey what the agency plans to do about “the looming air traffic control staffing crisis.” The association anticipates a personnel shortage of up to 50 percent in the next 10 years. “This is of particular concern because it takes up to five years to train a controller,” said NATCA president John Carr.
It is good news that the joint program and development office (JPDO), formed recently at the direction of Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta, is crafting a national policy on air transportation. Many voices, among them mine when I served as president of NBAA, called for a vision and mission statement by the U.S.
DOT Secretary Mary Peters cautioned that aviation delays will grow without significant FAA funding reforms (read: user fees) as forecasters predict air traffic will increase by the equivalent of the traffic generated by two major hub airports each year through 2020. Speaking at the annual FAA Forecast Conference last Thursday, Peters noted that airline delays last year reached an all-time high.
The FAA’s plans to update certification rules to reflect the improved capabilities and performance of modern helicopters appears to be moving ahead with few hurdles, according to officials with knowledge of the changes proposed last August.
Stephen Hickok of Hickok & Associates, Orange Beach, Ala., announced on Thursday that the FAA performed a successful flight inspection on February 23 of the company’s design for the first helicopter simultaneous noninterfering (SNI) instrument approach in a complex airspace system.
The GPS approach is out, and the Rnav approach is in. That’s because many pilots tend to think of GPS as a land-based navaid like a VOR, NDB or as a part of an ILS, and experts believe that thinking is misleading. More precisely, it’s the FMS in the airplane that allows the actual instrument approach to be flown.
To borrow the term “caveat emptor” (Latin for “let the buyer beware”) and mangle it only a bit, flight crews of aircraft that require two pilots should be aware that in some countries both of those pilots need to be type rated in that particular airplane.