FAA Issues Congressionally Mandated Rukemaking

From NAFI's Chair

FAA Issues Congressionally Mandated Rukemaking

The FAA has announced the final rulemaking that is in response to the Airline Safety and Federal Aviation Administration Extension Act of 2010. Many of you may recall that this law was Congress' response to the Colgan Air accident in Buffalo, N.Y. in 2009.

I will be direct and give my opinion that there are some regulatory changes included that may be of dubious value, notably the changes in experience requirements for the Airline Transport Rating. However, this is what was mandated by law and the FAA changed the requirement accordingly. As I point out to many young CFIs who are using their instructor certificate to gain that experience, as well as to their mentors who are dedicated long-term instructors, this mandated experience is a great opportunity to learn what it means to be Pilot in Command with a crew, namely instructing their students.

What I see as the positive outcome are the changes to Parts 61, 91, 121, and 135 that mandate both initial and recurrent training in leadership and mentoring. Although mainly focused on Part 121 operations, these new regulations also affect certain operations in Parts 91 and 135, where they reference back to the appropriate paragraphs in Part 121.

What is relevant to us as instructors is that this is something for which we can prepare our clients from the beginning of training. By instilling this in our training from the start, it will make it easier for our students who are bound for commercial aviation to make this part of their routine. The benefit for those pilots that are not interested in aviation as a career is that teaching these skills will undoubtably help them be better safer pilots.

To review the new regulations, see the link to the Federal Register here.


Bob Meder,
NAFI Board Chair
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