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FAA Head Concerned With Cockpit Experience

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diggertwo

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 28, 2001
Posts
65
http://www.pilotbug.com/?p=487

FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt, addressed ALPA’s annual Air Safety Forum and expressed concern for the quality of experience of captains in some of today’s airlines.


“There are some airlines out there with senior pilots who have three years under their belt, and, unlike back then — they are going right into jets, flying long days in some of the busiest airspace in the world.” Babbitt says in his speech, “I’m not saying that you’ve got to have 10 or 15 thousand hours before you’re worth your salt, but there is something to be said for having been flying around the system a few seasons.”


Babbitt continues and states that even these “seasoned” pilots must use their collective knowledge and mentor the rest of the pilot group to enhance safety. “This needs to become part of our professional DNA. If you’ve got experience and you’re not sharing it, you’re doing a disservice to our profession.”


He also acknowledged the problem of fatigue and that the FAA is in the process of addressing it. Flight-duty rules will be reconsidered after a study is completed by September 1st, where it will be submitted to the FAA. It will then be passed to the DOT and after 90 days, sent for public comment.
 
maybe because it will create a huge shortage of pilots when things pick back up again. On the other side of the Atlantic you see legacy carriers employing 250 hour pilots.


Those 250 hour pilots are not sitting next to 2-3000 hour guys normally. They are sitting next to senior guys, and check airmen.
 
If Babbitt is so concerned about cockpit experience, then why is he already denying the need for an ATP at the regionals? Nice flip-flop Munson.


What is requiring an ATP prior to employment really going to do? If you want a newhire to have 1500 hours then fine, but requiring them to have an ATP just means the newhires will have to go out to some rating factory somewhere, risk their lives in some scary light twin for a few hours and go a few thousand dollars deeper in the hole.

I got my ATP when I upgraded. All that was involved was checking off an extra box or two on my 8710 and spending a bunch of time studying for the ATP written test when I could (should?) have been studying our SOP, FOM, etc.

The ATP rating is superfluous considering that the only time you can exercise the privileges granted are after a multi-month training course specific to your airline and aircraft and passing multiple tests and checks that are well beyond what is required to simply obtain an ATP.

Scott
 
The ATP rating is superfluous considering that the only time you can exercise the privileges granted are after a multi-month training course specific to your airline and aircraft and passing multiple tests and checks that are well beyond what is required to simply obtain an ATP.

You won't say that if you have to pass the ride with a Fed at the local FSDO.
 
I can't tell why anyone would want an ATP at the regionals besides myself. Here is why I would want it.

- 1500 hours locked in. If the FAA asked for 1500TT instead of an ATP now, we all know that in a few years when there's not enough pilots applying at the regionals then there would be tremendous pressure on lowering that time. The ATP requirement would stop that in its tracks.

- I agree the ATP written is a joke. However, any more hurdles to getting the requirements for a job makes that job worth more. The only way to fix pilot pay is to require more hurdles to get there. Allowing 250 hour pilots the ability to fight for the same job as someone with an ATP will obviously reflect negatively on the amount paid for that job. Supply and demand will force the regionals to compete with 135 jobs that pay more.

- I've sat in the back of planes and jumpseated with pilots with less than 500 hours flying the plane. While saying everyone is unsafe would be lying, I can honestly say that most are unsafe. You don't have a big picture and your stick and rudder skills aren't honed. How many thunderstorms have you diverted around? How many times have you iced up? How good are your crosswind landings in 30kt gusts? By hiring low experience you are placing a huge burden on the captains and it's a detriment to safety. I'd be surprised if any of the low time regional hires could successfully divert at FL370 if there was severe weather all around and the captain has a heart attack. Do you really have the big picture to remember about icing, work the radar, know a good alternate and how to get there? Of course you don't.

- Why should someone need 1200TT to fly boxes at night, but it's ok to fly 50 people in all weather in a complex jet at 250? It's because they are relying on the captain to always be there and to fix everything. Don't we have enough to do without teaching crosswind landings with passengers in the back? Why is it called an ATP if you don't need one to fly for the airlines?

- In my opinion everyone at the regionals should be praying for the ATP minimum to pass. It's really the only way to put the focus on higher pay and safety. Without it the regionals will continue to hire unexperienced pilots for low pay. There's no incentive to raise the bar.
 
ATP will not pass nor will the 1500hr requirement. The reason is that schools such as Embry Riddle and Uni. North Dakota have more influence than you think. They are already working the FAA and legislatures and are fairly sure their grads are going to be protected. So a top professor explained to me just yesterday. Safety does not rule aviation. For the money, by the money, and nothing but the money.
 
Agreed.

The only thing I've learned in my years in this business is...

"Safety First! (unless it costs money)"
 

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