The House of Representatives passed a bill last week that imposes a $250,000 fine and up to a possible five-year prison term for people who point lasers at aircraft. Sponsored by Ric Keller (R-Fla.), the legislation is the outgrowth of several recent incidents. Laser beams can temporarily blind pilots and, in some reported cases, cause permanent eye damage. The bill now awaits passage by the Senate.
The FAA is preparing a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to require automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) equipage for aircraft to gain access to certain airspace by 2020, said FAA associate administrator for aviation safety Nicholas Sabatini. Sabatini made the comments during a speech at the FAA’s New Technologies Workshop on Tuesday in Washington.
As expected, the FAA is withdrawing a delayed final rule that amended the service difficulty reporting (SDR) requirements for air carriers and repair stations certified under FAR Part 121, 135 and/or 145. The effective date of the rule, adopted in September 2000, has been delayed several times.
In its January 10 modified final report on the fatal crash of a Cessna Caravan more than three years ago, the NTSB said thre was “no evidence of an in-flight collision or breakup, or of external contact with a foreign object.” There had been speculation in the industry that the freight-carrying turboprop single might have collided with another object or airplane, perhaps a nearby FedEx DC-10, before it lost control and crashed on Oct.
More stringent training requirements for pilots of Mitsubishi MU-2Bs will result from an FAA special safety review of the turboprop twin. The review, a portion of which was released today, was initiated last year following a series of MU-2B accidents. For Part 135 operators, the additional requirements will become part of their FAA-approved training syllabus and will be effective shortly.
Under FAA rulemaking proposed Friday, two years after a final rule becomes effective, paper pilot certificates could no longer be used and five years after the final rule becomes effective, certain other paper airmen certificates, such as those of flight engineers and mechanics, could no longer be used.
The FAA issued a final rule on multiengine turbine airplane extended operations (ETOPS) that allows operators of commercial aircraft–now including Part 135–to fly virtually anywhere, provided the aircraft is capable of protecting passengers and flight crew during an emergency diversion of any length.
The FAA and the Park Service have taken some steps to implement the National Parks Air Tour Management Act, but nearly six years after its passage, “the required air-tour management plans have not been completed,” according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office.
More stringent training requirements for pilots of Mitsubishi MU-2Bs have been recommended by an FAA Flight Standardization Board (FSB) report, but they stop short of mandating a type rating for the turboprop twin. The report follows a safety review initiated by the agency last year following a series of MU-2B accidents.
Last week, the White House introduced its proposed budget for federal programs in fiscal year 2007 that includes language calling for a new funding mechanism for the FAA.