ROCHESTER, N.Y. – The Federal Aviation Administration issued a new rule this week that mandates additional training for many pilots.
Previously, recreational, private and student pilots were required to:
- If under 40-years-old; renew medical certification every 5 years
- If over 40-years-old; renew medical certificate every 2 years
If the FAA identified any medical flags, authorities would step-in. This sometimes resulted in ordering more tests or grounding the pilot completely.
Starting this May, small aircraft pilots will be required to have:
- Medical exams every 4 years
- Completed online education course every 2 years
The new rule also states that physical exams can now be completed by a family doctor.
An airplane injury attorney at Cellino & Barnes says the new regulations could improve safety in the air for over 300,000 recreational pilots.
“We know how dangerous medical conditions can be while operating a car or a truck in the U.S.,” airplane injury lawyer Steve Barnes said. “If a pilot were to have a medical condition while operating an airplane, the result can be devastating for both the operator and the passengers, and medical exams aim to prevent these disasters.”
The FAA said the changes will make the process “more efficient” for private pilots and keep “aviation flying affordable.” Advocates of the new rule have said the medical requirements were too expensive and tedious before. In fact, medical exams had cost pilots an estimated $20 million each year.
In a 2014 study, the National Transportation Safety Board noted that many pilots were “flying without a medical certificate” because of the costs associated with the previous medical requirements. Some pilots were found to be using prescription medication while flying, and determining their fitness to fly on their own.
Commercial airline unions have gone on record saying the newest regulations give pilots and passengers an adequate level of safety.
However, some research has discovered that prescription medications are an increasing problem, although they rarely correlate to the cause of airplane accident.
In any case, if you or a loved one has been injured on an airplane, you may be entitled to significant compensation. Cellino & Barnes has experienced airplane injury lawyers who can help you and your family get the best result possible from an injury or wrongful death claim.
The consultation is free, and you won’t owe a fee unless Cellino & Barnes wins your case.
Cellino & Barnes 800-888-8888