NTSB chairman Mark Rosenker told the House aviation subcommittee yesterday that his agency is disappointed with the FAA’s response to five of six aviation items on the NTSB’s Most Wanted List of safety improvements.
On April 1, the NTSB celebrated its 40th anniversary. On that date in 1967, the Bureau of Safety was removed from the Civil Aeronautics Board and became the new accident investigation agency. Each year, the agency’s staff of fewer than 400 employees investigates more than 2,000 accidents and incidents.
NTSB chairman Mark Rosenker was busy stumping about issues related to GA safety last month. He spoke to a group of airport executives and FAA representatives at an airport technology seminar about the importance of runway incursion safety. He stressed that while aircraft separations in the air are based upon miles, on the ground space is measured in feet.
NTSB chairman Mark Rosenker said he believes runway incursions are still a major safety issue. In a speech to a group of airport executives and FAA representatives at an airport technology seminar in Atlantic City last Tuesday, he emphasized that while aircraft separation in the air is measured in miles (horizontally), on the ground it is measured in feet.
NTSB acting chairman Mark Rosenker said the FAA’s airport movement area safety system (AMASS) is not adequate to prevent serious runway collisions. Citing several recent near-collisions at Boston and New York airports where AMASS allegedly did not perform, Rosenker noted that the situations were instead resolved by flight crew actions sometimes bordering on the heroic–and luck.
Thirty years after the worst runway collision in aviation history, an NTSB forum on runway incursions spotlighted some promising technology but offered no “silver bullet” solution to preventing ground accidents. “Luck should not be part of the safety equation,” noted NTSB chairman Mark Rosenker. Last week, FAA Administrator Marion Blakey said the agency is fast-tracking airport moving-map displays for electronic flight bags.
The NTSB will hold a one-day forum on March 27 focusing on runway incursions and accidents and potential solutions. “Eliminating runway incursions and collisions is a top priority of the Safety Board and has been on our Most Wanted List since 1990,” said NTSB chairman Mark Rosenker, who will preside over the forum.
Mark Rosenker became the 11th chairman of the NTSB in August after serving as acting chairman since March 2005. A member of the NTSB since March 2003, he was designated by President Bush as vice chairman the following month.
A spate of crashes that led the FAA to propose mandatory pilot training requirements for the Mitsubishi MU-2 galvanized Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.) into action. Representing constituents Jim and Linda Presba, whose son was killed in a Dec. 10, 2004, MU-2 crash near Centennial, Colo., Tancredo launched an effort to force the FAA to ground the MU-2.
The NTSB is focusing its resources for general aviation accident investigation on four “broad GA safety issue areas,” Safety Board chairman Mark Rosenker said in a speech yesterday at the General Aviation Air Safety Investigators Advanced Technical Workshop in Wichita.