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Squawks & HeadlinesFAA considering raising the bar for airline pilots

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FAA considering raising the bar for airline pilots

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FAA Monday proposed to substantially raise the qualification requirements for first officers who fly for U.S. passenger and cargo airlines (www.aviationnews.net) More...

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KarlenePetitt
I think the FAA needs to realize the problem is not the initial qualifications of the pilots, but the reduced training due to automated aircraft and pilots not knowing... remembering... how to fly their planes when they lose their automation. This is a training issue. More hours do not necessarily make safer pilots.
calbert
calbert 3
I agree with you. I think it is just training issue and not flight time. I think a good training program would be the ticket. One that does not punish the pilot by getting them fired when they fail, and allows them to become better pilots buy allowing them to train better on there mistakes. Also makes them fly the aircraft manuly and not relying on automation all the time. Not knowing how to fly the plane or handle the problem will still exisit even if they have atp.
calbert
calbert 1
One more thing, I think they should require at least 1000hours as a CFI. I think that helps some even when they may losse some skills but gain many more as a CFI. Not an ATP.
DashTrash
DashTrash 1
Why is instructing necessary to make it to the airlines? I never got my CFI, landed my first airline job with about 1300 YY, over 1000 of it multi.
EAGDDS
Eric Graham 1
where did you get 1k multi time? My son is cfii, but has to buy multi time at 250 per hour? Again, where do you get experience, in today's world, if you need experience to get experience? His dispatcher at the flight school makes more than him, gets a salary, and has benefits, while he gets paid for flight hours, when the weather is fliable, and gets no benefits or guaranteed income? It is a shame for a four year college educated person with all his ratings!
DashTrash
DashTrash 3
I was an airport rat. Fueled airplanes, washed them, helped the mechanics work on them, washed rental cars, etc. I got some time from aircraft owners, maintenance flights, that sort of thing. After a while your name will get around and opportunities to fly multiengine aircraft will open up. I got hired soon after to fly right seat in a Beech 18, then 337s after that. That company ended up with a Learjet, which opened a few doors.

I'll admit I was lucky to be in those situations, but my friends who instructed logged their time quicker.

I wish your son the best. This legislation will make the road tougher, but quite possibly make the investment more worthwhile.

mikeb5618
Mike Barbato 3
I'm not sure I understand where this glut of experienced pilots is coming from. Most of the regionals are hiring now and have been for the past 6-12 months. A couple even dropped their mins below 1000. Eagle was hiring very aggressively up until the bankruptcy and dropped mins to 500/50. The 5th anniversary of the age 65 rule is this December, so the retirements should pick up again. And most of the airlines are either growing their fleets or holding steady.
KW10001
Kylan Walters 3
As someone trying to rack up hours for my private, it seems like getting into the airlines is an impossible goal.
dtw757
mike SUT 3
In response to the commnt requiring an Instrument ticket prior to a Private...the argument is at the bottom of your paragraph and it supports flight time as an experience builder. Just because you have an Instrument ticket, you still need the flight hours to build an experience level that will give you the judgement and decision making skills to keep you and your passengers from hitting " high speed dirt". You can have all the licenses in the world but without time and experience, that macho attitude will never be questioned by that internal voice. I had a multi engine, Commercial ticket and a couple of hundred hours and knew I was prepared for the world. Now with 23000 plus ( stopped logging) i know better than to think my license and good looks will save me.
racer847
STick with it, this resorts to the old system of instructing being a solid route to build experience and flight time. It is just meant to force some of the regionals to hire more seasoned pilots. We can all only hope that will equate to more equitable pay scales.
sch53ell
your just starting so not impossible but yes you are a LONG ways out yet
preacher1
preacher1 1
Mike: I think it's kind of a gradual thing but as the legacies are reducing capacity and lanes, you are having senior captain's & FO's coming into the workplace and basically just getting snapped up by the regionals. Why hire somebody off the street if you have that kind of experience walk into your office. You also had that retirement wave off AA prior to their bankruptcy and there have been some go since then, and there will be others before that deal is done. The regionals are just licking their chops to get these senior guys but it will definitely make it harder on new entrants.
EAGDDS
Eric Graham 2
What kind of training will my son get tooling around in a 172 for hundreds of hours. Sure, being a CFI helps him to develop critical thinking skills and decision making. But he needs to be in an aircraft flying with a sesasoned veteran learning how to navigate weather, icing and TRW, emergency procedure, CRM, etc. The training environment should be as a resident in a hospital surgical suite. The resident assists, watches and learns, then does the procedure with the watchful eye of the surgeon, then is released to do it himself. That is how confidence and experience are gained. Real world expereience is what is necessary.
rmchambers
rmchambers 2
There really will be a pilot shortage after this gets rolled in and a wave of retirements hit.
Nrice91
Noah Rice 2
Instead of raising bar in one area, why isn't the FAA looking at raising the bar from the ground up when one starts their private pilot training?
sch53ell
If they are going to do this (which it sounds like they definately are) they need to modify either the ATP to the age 21 or they need to make a limited atp per say for fo's. I dont know who decided that age determines experience but I dont see how age has anything to do with it. You can bring up the maturity thing but I've seen LOTS of immature 23-year-olds. Maybe the pilots could use a few more hours for mins however it was always my understanding that the fo was there for emergencies, to help eliminate some workload, and also partly trying to gain experience with the more expierienced pilots. I personally think this rule is a little rediculous especially since everyone still goes through the company's training be an fo or a captain. Anyone know if it will be possible at all that the current younger-than-23 pilots will be grandfathered in or are they going to be layed off?
julieort
julieort 2
Experience, but where? 15000 flight hours does not necessarily prepare for landing in Buffalo/icing conditions.
Nrice91
Noah Rice 2
Getting the IR before the PPL in it's own way really does make better sense.
clipper759
joe johnson 2
Google Captain Jacob Van Zanten. Then tell me how much experience is enough?
preacher1
preacher1 2
Well, Van Zanten was certainly well experienced. They have blamed Tenarife on hetrodyne, fog, and everything else, but buried deep in the report is his high/mighty attitude and constant harangue of the controllers to get them out of there as the fog lifted. He was KLM's fair haired boy and he knew it. Wiki calls him introverted but that is being nice and an understatement. KLM pilots called him a kiss ass and royal prick.
preacher1
preacher1 2
I am like you Stan on the age thing. Most folks take it in steps anyway and the next one up should be available as soon as someone has completed the others and is ready to progress. I have seen guys at 18 take forever to get each progressive ticket just because they either didn't have the resources or weren't serious about it and some having to hang on to a commercial forever just because they weren't "OLD ENOUGH" for their ATP. I also agree with you on the maturity thing. I brought up an FO that same way on a 757. Liked the kid and he was sharp. He stayed there over 20 and now has the left seat and a brand new 767-200, BUT, he knew what he wanted and was willing to work to get it.
sch53ell
yes thankyou someone sees what i see. and generally the people under 23 that are in the spot to get their ATP are serious, mature, and self-starters being they did study hard to get where they are. I am currently working on my commercial license and my instructor is 20. He is pulling his hair out over this deal and he is more than capable to move up but he is getting screwed by this. Even though he is an instructor and works full time he goes home at night and cracks the books and studies more because he has some small hope that the airlines might just take him. He just told me yesterday he is starting to see why 80% of people who start flight school dont finish because they get down on not being able to move on. he says right now his dream is stuck and fading fast for a few years. He worked really had to get where he is now and i would hate to see this happen. Also they are talking about letting a 4 year school graduate with an aviation degree get an ATP with 1000 hrs. To me this is stupid seeing as i go to a 2 year program (Iowa Lakes Community College still 141) and have the same ground schools and certificates and ratings that they do when i graduate? I would think that after pushing through it and keeping everything fresh in your mind for 2 years would be better than crawling through it in 4 and forgetting half the basics you learned in private. I would like to see their reasoning behind that one and of course it is not finalized yet.
sch53ell
yes the thing we all need to understand is that were all human we all make mistakes. The families from the buffalo accident do have my sympathy without a doubt but with all the car crashes why dont we have to be 23 to drive? some states dont even make people take drivers ed anymore! i feel like people blow aircraft accidents out of proportion. they are sad and we should be safe but as long as man flies man WILL make mistakes. fact of life.
preacher1
preacher1 2
Well, it seems like college is everything these days to a lot of people, even if it's a 4 year drunk course but then you have a college degree and your smarter than everybody else.
Bulls%^&!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
sch53ell
couldn have said it better:-) i know a guy who did it all 61 got a good job right off the bat and hasnt set foot in a college. does the same job as so many others but gets paid less because of it and i think that is rediculous...
dbaker
Daniel Baker 1
The last thing we need is make the private ticket any harder...look at the rate of completion over the last few decades.
dbaker
Daniel Baker 1
Clearly, it's hard to objectively quantify experience -- that's a problem we see today with people that have most of their experience in the pattern either receiving or giving dual, but for most people, that's the only way to do it with the rules and economics as they are today.
Nrice91
Noah Rice 1
I guess I'm going to have to buy my type rating.
Speedbird103
Speedbird103 1
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Minimum of 1500 hours for First Officers

The FAA is suggesting that First Officers have a minimum of 1500 before they can climb into the right hand seat of an airliner.



http://www.speedbird103.com/2012/02/faa-changes-first-officer-flight-hours.html
preacher1
preacher1 1
That bottom part " also included in the rule: confuses me, the part about a pilot needing 1000 hrs; maybe I'm reading it wrong but it sounds funny
EAGDDS
Eric Graham 1
Wayne, I think they mean that to be a captain, you need 1,000 hours in turbine aircraft to be eligible for captain. My son has almost 1500 hours, but having hard time getting a f/o position because most are looking for pilots with jet time. This is going to make it even more difficult for these young people to get hired. How do you get all this experience if you need experience to get in the right seat? Another catch 22.
KarlenePetitt
Read Flight For Control and learn what the "real" problems are. Not requiring more hours for initial pilots. http://tinyurl.com/7xujdrc
preacher1
preacher1 1
I'd rather have somebody next to me with 250 hours turbine time as opposed to somebody with 2500 non turbine nor never been in a jet of any kind. just sayin'
1900driver
I agree, but like I was saying, it's unheard of up here where guy's can get into a stepping stone airline like Porter or jazz without having turbine time. You don't see guys out of flight school going from a 172 to an RJ.
Mharwood0089
Mike Harwood 1
I recently road on express jet and the F.O. Told me that a guy in his class was hired with 400 total time. I suspect many of those hours were in good VFR. The only thing saving the industry is automation and alert Captains. In 2000, I was hired to fly a Jetstream with 2000 TT and 500 ME and felt like I needed much more time. I know a Delta 767 pilot who will not let his family ride an RJ due to inexperienced crews. Just my humble opinion but it is a job where there must be no substitute for experience. Unfortunately, the almighty dollar is the culprit as airlines cannot afford the salaries required for experience.
im4point
Chris Murray 1
And how many commercial airlines have crashed the last 50 years with pilots having LESS than 1500TT? The Colgan pilots (which this is based off of) had over 1500TT each. This will just hurt the airlines. Maybe we should do sim training every 8 months not 12 months.
sch53ell
I agree every captain does need experience and lots of it, however if everyone is required to have lots of experience where should one start getting this experience? I thought that was one of the primary functions of the FO... gaining experience. I agree it is a bad thing if BOTH pilots are inexperienced but the whole FO thing seems to be a bit of a joke.
Mharwood0089
Mike Harwood 1
Good point on the accident stats. I think we obviously have a safe system and excellent training or this would have been addressed by the FAA long ago. The focus should be on quality as well as quantity although they both have their on merit. I also think ATC deserves a lot of credit for the safety of flight especially when it comes to convective weather and their teamwork with pilots.
sch53ell
This thing about raising the bar all the way up... Its way off the subject but what would make aviation quite a bit safer is requiring every pilot to be instrument rated before being issued a private license. I was told once life expectancy after a non-ifr pilot entered imc was like 2-5 minutes before they got themselves disoriented? i see a lot of people come out with their privates and they think they're pretty hot stuff but between the macho attitude and the horrible decision making skills they scare me. an instrument rating would be a good idea for everyone.
sch53ell
what i was saying is with the instrument rating, first of all more experience before the private (license to kill yourself and 3 friends) and learning to check the weather better and make better decisions for yourself before just letting people who really dont realize what they are getting into go fly around I dont know but i think general aviation and "hobby pilots" is where we rack up the majority of our accidents. I have nothing against hobby pilots however they should be safer than most are now. also the sport pilot rating now available? how is that safe?
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 2
The B-1900....if I ever manage to get back into flying and finish my flight training I think everyone should start out in a b-1900 or a comparible plane....turbine time and you are not putting 40+ lives in an unexperienced pilots hands but that is just my opinion...Let the experienced pilots fly the heavy metal and for goodness sakes pay pilots a salary that reflects the time, effort and money that they put into their training...Heck I currently fuel trucks and work on trailers and I make 19.65 an hr...roughly about the same as dash-8 pilot and slightly more than a b-1900 captain before their 5th year...ridulous
preacher1
preacher1 1
Kinda like insurance companies are holding truck drivers to these days. They have to go with some fly by night or rinkey dink to gain experience to drive for somebody decent. My suggestion is probably some small corporate or cargo job, but with so many experienced pilots out there right now, it may be bad hard. Ain't an easy answer but some strong prayer
KarlenePetitt
Yes... you might. I wrote about this in my novel.
jdoro
James Doro 1
As scary as that is I have heard of it. Do not ask my why or wtf this particular airline (won't get into that) is thinking with this agreement, but there is a University in Michigan with an agreement with a regional that goes beyond just giving graduates an interview, but basically ensures you have a class date the second you are done with your commercial anywhere between 250-300 hours.

I have no clue how many of those guy get through class, but still. It just annoys the hell out of me when I have 2200TT and 150 or so multi with an ATP and everything else, but I can't get an interview to save my life after 1.5 years...

It gets depressing after awhile.
DashTrash
DashTrash 1
He shouldn't have a problem getting on with a regional without jet time. Me may be short on multi time though. With 1500 TT he is marketable as long as he has the multi time. Feel free to PM me through the message board on here if you want some extra info.
dbaker
Daniel Baker 1
True...although notably the captain had only ~100 hours in type which was probably a factor.
preacher1
preacher1 1
You are correct but right now, although changing as the experienced pilot pool is increasing due to cutbacks, that seems to be the course of progression down this way. It does seem the market is tightening up and as it does, then those requirements will undoubtedly change. The regionals aren't really paying anything anyway but if they have a 3000 hour laid off captain or FO willing to work for that money, why take somebody lesser qualified. I was arbitrarily retired just before the rule change, but over the last few years have been doing fill in for Eagle and Pinnacle and their majors from time to time, but as they downsized and reduced capacity, more and more senior guys hit the bricks and the hit the call roster first before they go outside. I haven't done anything for Eagle or AA since the weekend before they filed BR. I did one turn for DAL about a month ago, and it's not because they aren't still having to fill at times but are using guys that are laid off and needing work.
EAGDDS
Eric Graham 1
THanks Dash, he did interview with a corporate FBO recently, also had some good references, but the other two guys had type ratings and turbine time. We know the owner of the company very well, but these other guys had been furloughed and so how could he compete with that. Doesnt a type cost the company 15-25K? I guess its a no brainer for the company. He will keep his app in, but how will they ever take him over an experienced turbine pilot? He is going to be Chief Flight Ins. for local 141 school, so that may bolster his resume, but he wants corporate over regional. Any other help you can throw at me? Thanks
DashTrash
DashTrash 1
What is it you're doing now?
preacher1
preacher1 1
Sitting on my ass as far as flying goes. I think I did a fill for my ex employer here a couple of weeks ago, but it was just a Saturday morning short hop out and back on the King Air, lasted about 4 hours.
DashTrash
DashTrash 1
Corporate is all about who you know and who can satisfy the insurance company. Most of the positions I've seen want the applicant to be typed as well. Like you said, type ratings cost a lot.

For getting a career off the ground, I'd suggest a regional. The lifestyle isn't fun, but the experience he'd get is good, and within 3-5 years fractionals will most likely be hiring again. Fractional flying is almost as a good as corporate, but you are much busier. You also get typed in the aircraft you're flying, which will help is chances getting on with a corporate flight dept.
DashTrash
DashTrash 1
Sounds familiar. I'm furloughed and haven't touched an airplane since '09.
sch53ell
are you a cfi? i think i'd go that route just to stay current if i were you. just a thought
DashTrash
DashTrash 1
Don't have my CFI and it's too expensive to get.
preacher1
preacher1 0
They definitely need to look at the RJ pilots, but as long as somebody will work for that, it ain't gonna happen
jdoro
James Doro 0
WTF!? How the hell are supposed to get an Instrument Rating BEFORE you even know how to fly!? Are you serious right now? I have had a pathetic number of students who could barely fly the first 15 hours, horrendously bad the first 5 hours, and you expect me to take off with a new student on our first lesson and after 500 agl, "I have the controls. Put these on. All set? Okay your aircraft!" Right that makes a lot of sense.

This is one of those ideas that "looks good on paper" You cannot learn how to fly instrument approaches when you don't even have the basic skills of constant airspeed climbs/descents and basic aircraft control. Whats funny is when I have privates, who actually have that background, start an instrument rating with me, it is still an ENORMOUS learning curve for them and this is coming from someone who knows HOW TO fly.
sch53ell
thats not what i meant at all. i am talking about extending the hour requirements for the private and tacking the instrument rating on the end before the license is issued. the possibility would still be there to be "signed off to solo" without passengers of course and once they can get themselves out of bad situations they could be licensed and carry passengers. i'm not saying start right away but right now when your done with private you start instrument so just tack the instrument on the end of the private license instead of the unrestricted commercial license.
sch53ell
also get rid of the restricted commercial all together.
jdoro
James Doro 1
I got ya! Yeah I don't ANYONE who actually has a commercial certificate without an instrument rating. Its completely worthless. So dumb.

The only problem I see with this is its going to turn away a lot of people who want to learn to fly for a hobby. These are the types that don't fly when its even marginal out and what not. It would be tough telling them the private is around $5,000 but right when your done you gotta start an instrument ticket which is another few grand.

This makes sense and is basically what career pilots do. Get the instrument the moment they are done with a private, but outside of pilots looking to do this for a job it might be tough.
sch53ell
yes and once again nothing against a hobby pilot as long as theyre not the macho hobby pilot.aviation isnt cheap and everyone knows that however sometimes they are the ones who make aviation look bad and unsafe to the public when they get disoriented and dive bomb out of the clouds and hit "high speed dirt" lol:-) love that phrase
onceastudentpilot
tim mitchell 0
Bring back the b-1900...lol
1900driver
it's about time you american's start following in Canada's footsteps. I can't remember the last time there has been a fatal crash in any canadian airline. In Canada you need to have 1500 hrs to get your A's and airlines don't look at guys with less than 3000 hrs. You put a 200 hr wonder in the right seat of an RJ and a Captain with 2000 hrs in the left, bad things are bound to happen.
clipper759
joe johnson 2
Well Stephane. That would be First Air 6560. A B732 that crashed at Resolute Bay on August 20 2011 killing 12 people.

Remember now?
Sabre60
Brian Smith 1
Thats really the way it USED to be here. When I got hired at an RJ operating regional in 2001, I had 5000+ hours. If a resume hit the door with less than 3000TT, it went straight to the trash...not anymore.