Aviation News, Headlines & Alerts
Category: <span>pilots</span>

Furious Air France Workers Attack Executives Over Job Cuts

Air FranceAbout 100 Air France employees stormed a management and union official meeting on October 5, after the airline announced plans to shed 2,900 jobs in the next 2 years.

The airline, which is struggling to compete with global rivals, announced job cuts after failing to convince its pilots to work longer hours on same salary.

The airline’s human resources manager Xavier Broseta and the head of long-haul flights Pierre Plissonnier had to flee from the angry workers, with their shirts torn off.

Seven people, including a security guard, were injured in the incident.

French President Francois Hollande said, “Social dialogue matters and when it’s interrupted by violence, and disputes take on an unacceptable form, it can have consequences for the image and attractiveness” of the country.”

A criminal investigation has been launched into the incident.

165 Pilots in India Found Drunk in Pre-Flight Tests, During Last 5 Years

In reply to an RTI application filed by the Time of India, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), India, has revealed that between 2009 and February 2014, 165 pilots throughout the country were grounded after their pre-flight medical tests showed high levels of alcohol in their blood.

Among these, 50 pilots were from Delhi, 47 from Mumbai, 18 from Kolkata, and 17 from Chennai.

The statistics also showed that the number of pilots with higher-than-allowed level of alcohol in their blood has increased every year. In 2009, only 35 such cases were reported while in 2013, 41 pilots were found to have high blood alcohol levels.

The DGCA has not released the names of the airlines where these pilots work. According to official sources “The information pertains to third party, hence details cannot be provided according to the RTI Act.”

Sleeping Pilots

Two pilots fell asleep while flying an Airbus A330, and then tattled on themselves, blaming 5 hours sleep the night before.

Pilots are allowed naps but not at the same time. The British airline has not been identified, nor have the pilots’ names been released.


The National Transportation Safety Board announced today that it has issued a Final Rule to implement several changes to its Rules of Practice applicable to aviation certificate enforcement appeals. This final rule responds to public comments received by the NTSB as a result of an interim final rule (IFR) it issued last October. The NTSB issued the IFR after the enactment of the Pilot’s Bill of Rights legislation and it became effective upon its publication in the Federal Register on October 16, 2012.

Under the Pilot’s Bill of Rights: (1) the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) must disclose its enforcement investigative report (EIR) to the FAA certificate holder in an aviation certificate enforcement case; (2) NTSB administrative law judges must apply the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and Federal Rules of Evidence in enforcement cases; and (3) litigants now have the option of appealing the NTSB’s final orders to either a Federal district court or a Federal court of appeals. The IFR implemented these Pilot’s Bill of Rights requirements. Under the IFR, an FAA certificate holder is permitted to submit a motion to dismiss an FAA complaint if the FAA fails to disclose releasable portions of its EIR. The NTSB received 10 comments in response to the IFR. The Final Rule describes these comments in detail, as most of the comments provided substantive feedback and suggestions.

In considering the IFR comments, the NTSB determined it should include a proposal to extend the EIR availability requirement in the Pilot’s Bill of Rights to emergency enforcement cases. As a result, the NTSB is also publishing a new Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in conjunction with publication of the Final Rule in the Federal Register.

Both the Final Rule and NPRM are available at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2013-09-19/pdf/2013-22634.pdf (Final Rule) and http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2013-09-19/pdf/2013-22633.pdf (NPRM). The public may submit comments to the NPRM, concerning the proposal to require the FAA to make available the EIR in emergency enforcement cases, via www.regulations.gov, Docket No. NTSB-GC-2011-0001, or via postal mail or facsimile, addressed to the NTSB Office of General Counsel. Comments should be submitted no later than October 21, 2013. The Final Rule is immediately effective.

See the bill below

In George’s Point of View

Time to take note of the final rule. The public can submit their opinion at http://www.regulations.gov, Docket No. NTSB-GC-2011-0001, or via postal mail or facsimile, addressed to the NTSB Office of General Counsel.

Is the so-called upcoming pilot shortage a scare tactic?

Several factors will be contributing to an upcoming pilot shortage:

  • In the summer of 2013, newly hired pilots will be required to have 1,500 hours of prior flight experience—six times the current minimum
  • Upcoming (2014) Federal Safety Rule fatigue laws decrease flight time
  • Senior pilots hitting mandatory retirement at 65
  • Tight airline budgets, costs cut

So the question is is the so-called upcoming pilot shortage a trumped-up scare tactic by the airlines to get themselves wiggle room in the face of regulations they’ve had years to prepare to comply with?

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