EAA, NAFI Submit Comments on Flight Training Certification NPRM
December 3, 2009 — EAA is emphasizing that new FAA pilot proficiency rule proposals could be harmful to the warbird community if adopted as currently written, as EAA and NAFI each submitted comments to the FAA in the past week regarding a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on pilot and flight school certification rules. The deadline for those comments was Nov. 30. EAA agreed with many of the proposals in the NPRM, but new pilot-in-command rules that demanded proficiency checks for single-piloted, turbojet aircraft could cause added financial burden with no foreseeable increase in safety.
“The NPRM was written to address the requirements for the emerging Very Light Jet category,” said David Oord, government and regulatory specialist for EAA. “Jet warbird aircraft would be included in this change, however, causing real burden on that community. Right now, pilots of Experimental Exhibition aircraft such as warbird jets are held to even-higher air-transport pilot standards, so this change is unnecessary for safety.”
EAA recommended more focused language that would specifically address the desired result for the NPRM and maintain the current high standards for jet warbird pilots.
NAFI, meanwhile, concentrated a focus on the proposal that would replace the 10 hours of complex airplane aeronautical experience with 10 hours of advanced instrument training. The proposal was written to address changes in the training equipment fleet as well as bolster commercial airline pilot training.
“We are encouraging FAA to postpone action on this particular area until any changes mandated by the Airline Safety and Pilot Training Act become known,” said Jason Blair, NAFI executive director. “If FAA chooses to move forward with this provision of the NPRM, there is language that would better address the stated need than that currently in the proposal.”
EAA and NAFI will continue to review pilot training issues forwarded by FAA, working to maintain and enhance safety while preventing undue burdens on the general aviation community.