The FAA has revoked the licenses of two Northwest Airlines pilots who overflew their destination airport by 150 miles on October 21 while operating Flight 188 from San Diego to Minneapolis (MSP). The emergency revocations cite violations of a number of Federal Aviation Regulations, including failure to comply with air traffic control instructions and clearances and operating carelessly and recklessly.
Pilot licensing and certification
In the view of many airline chief pilots, the established system of professional pilot training produces pilots who– while satisfactory in a single-crew operation–need additional training in two-crew procedures before they are of use to airlines.
British Aerospace HS.125-700A, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Nov. 1, 2006–The Hawker landed gear-up at Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport because the flight crew failed to extend the landing gear, according to the NTSB. A contributing factor was the inoperative audible landing gear warning system. The pilot explained that he was distracted by trying to locate the runway for a visual approach.
Pilots who apply for a new certificate to replace one that has been damaged or lost, or who require a new certificate because of added ratings or endorsements, will receive a pleasant surprise. The FAA has started to issue redesigned credit-card-size certificates that are more professional looking documents and made from composite PVC media card stock instead of paper.
If you get the feeling you’re just a number when it comes to getting your medical, you may be interested to know that the FAA issues 453,000 airman medicals every year. According to an FAA spokesman, the agency also processes 5,700 special issuances, responds to 87,600 written inquiries, answers 95,000 telephone inquiries and conducts 155,000 full reviews of medical records. But don’t be too quick to assume they’re an uncaring lot.
Beech King Air B90, San Jon, N.M., May 14, 2001–The NTSB determined that the probable cause of the accident was the pilot’s failure to maintain aircraft control due to his incapacitation for an undetermined reason. A contributing factor was the subsequent inadvertent stall/spin to the ground.
Simulation and training specialist CAE is about to embark on a full-scale beta test of the new multi-crew pilot’s license (MPL) curriculum it developed to complement existing programs in its Global Academy.
The infrastructure to support business aviation in Asia is improving, but U.S.- and Europe-based business jet operators and their flight support staff still face challenges.
Twenty years ago owner-pilots of high-performance airplanes often supplemented their flying skills by offering the right seat of the airplane to a young CFI whose role was to help keep the left-seat aviator out of trouble. That usually meant working the radios, stowing the charts and generally acting as another set of eyes and hands when the weather was bad or the traffic was dense.
Frontier Airlines grounded one of its captains and first officers after they inadvertently flew their Boeing 737 into prohibited airspace above the White House seconds after taking off from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) last month.