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NASA Controller Fatigue Assessment Report Q&A

Press Release – NASA Controller Fatigue Assessment Report Q&A

What steps has the FAA taken to relieve the problem of controller fatigue?

In 2012, the FAA implemented a comprehensive Fatigue Risk Management System to manage controller fatigue. This Fatigue Risk Management System includes policy and practice changes, along with fatigue education to raise awareness about the personal responsibilities associated with managing fatigue.

Some of the changes the FAA has made as part of the Fatigue Risk Management System include:

  • Allowing for recuperative breaks when no duties are assigned
  • Requiring nine hours off duty where a day shift follows an evening shift
  • Requiring positive confirmation of air traffic hand-offs during midnight operations
  • Restricting consecutive midnight shifts
  • Restricting 10-hour midnight shifts
  • Restricting the start time of early morning day shifts that precede a midnight shift
  • Allowing controllers to self-declare fatigue and take time off if needed to recuperate

Has the FAA’s policy on napping on breaks changed? How about napping during overnight shifts?

Yes, we updated our policy in 2012. Based on staffing and workload – and when no duties are assigned – we offer employees break opportunities to attend to personal needs, rejuvenate their mental acuity, and other similar activities. These break opportunities are available on all work shifts, including overnight shifts.

Does the FAA still prohibit schedules with a single controller on duty after midnight?

The FAA makes a practice of staffing at least two controllers on midnight shifts. There could be situations in which an individual calls in sick, but that is not standard. On those rare occasions, we have implemented additional procedures to ensure controller alertness.

How has controller scheduling changed? Is the minimum 9 hours off between work shifts announced after these events still in effect? Does this apply to all work shifts, or just the 2-2-1 rotation?

Yes, we have changed our scheduling policies and practices. These changes include:

  • Requiring nine hours off duty where a day shift follows an evening shift
  • Restricting consecutive midnight shifts
  • Restricting the number of 10-hour midnight shifts
  • Restricting the start time of early morning day shifts that precede a midnight shift to ensure night time sleep opportunities

The minimum nine hours off between work shifts is an ongoing requirement under Joint Order 7210.3. It doesn’t apply to all shifts. It applies to all schedules where a day shift follows an evening shift (this protects nighttime sleep opportunity).

Does the FAA believe the problem of controller fatigue has improved? Do you have any metrics to judge that by?
We believe it has improved. Although fatigue is an issue in any 24/7 operation, the FAA has taken many positive steps to minimize fatigue. The fatigue modeling we’ve done shows that there is greater alertness using these updated scheduling practices.




Chaos at 30,000 Feet: Woman Duct-Taped to Seat for Trying to Open Plane Door [Roundup] – View from the Wing

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A roundup of the most important stories of the day. I keep you up to date on the most interesting writings I find on other sites – the latest news and tips.

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An IndiGo flight from Ayodhya to Delhi reportedly faced a critical situation on April 13. Due to low fuel levels, the plane diverted to

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Pilot, dog swim to shore after small plane makes emergency landing in waters off Rancho Palos Verdes

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46th Saudi relief plane delivers shelter aid to Gaza

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Albanian Organized Crime Group Busted for Smuggling Migrants into Essex by Plane

In a landmark case, Myrteza Hilaj, 50, and Kreshnik Kadena, 37, both from Leyton, East London, were found guilty of orchestrating a sophisticated people smuggling operation. Utilizing light aircraft, they transported economic migrants from northern France to Essex, providing them with counterfeit documents for hefty fees. Operation Micropus Unravels a Criminal Network The National Crime Agency’s (NCA) eight-year investigation, known as Operation Micropus, has cracked down on an Albanian organized crime group’s extensive illegal activities. This group, deeply involved in facilitating illegal migration, money laundering, drug trafficking, and the creation and distribution of fake documents, saw at least nine journeys of Albanian economic migrants in 2016 and 2017. Interestingly, a portion of these operations involved the innovative use of a light aircraft, a method not commonly associated with people smuggling. The Journey from France to Essex Highlighting the group’s modus operandi, migrants would depart from Le Touquet airport in northern France and land at Stapleford Aerodrome Airfield in Essex. From here, Kadena was responsible for collecting the migrants. The cost of this perilous journey could reach up to £10,000, with additional charges for the counterfeit documents necessary to establish a new life in the UK. These documents, many of which were supplied by Hilaj, included fake passports, ID cards, and utility bills. Hilaj’s role was likened to that of a ‘travel agent’, meticulously planning and coordinating these illegal transits. Impact and Outcome of the Investigation The successful convictions of Hilaj and Kadena are a testament to the NCA’s relentless pursuit of those exploiting vulnerable individuals for profit. The broader investigation led to 27 arrests, with 11 convictions in the UK and nine overseas. Additionally, the dismantling of four forgery factories and the safeguarding of over 50 migrants underscore the operation’s significant impact on disrupting criminal networks. The seizure of drugs and arrest of individuals involved in other facets of illegal migration further highlight the comprehensive nature of the NCA’s efforts. This case sheds light on the sophisticated and diverse methods employed by organized crime groups to facilitate illegal migration. It also underscores the importance of international cooperation and persistent investigative work in bringing such operations to a halt. The sentencing of Hilaj and Kadena, scheduled for May, is eagerly awaited, as it represents a crucial step towards justice for the countless individuals exploited by their actions. For More Interesting News Follow Us on Instagram

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