“Pilot training is now a growing concern as the number of regional aircraft, smaller planes that are cheaper to fly, takes off. More than one in five passengers boarding planes in 2008 were on regional jets, a 42% increase since 2003. ... of all the regional crashes in this century in the last decade there were eight and in seven of the eight the NTSB faulted the pilot training and the pilot performance in the cockpit.” (CBS)


It’s called the Regional Airline Safety Summit and is being held after a series of regional carriers aren’t taking safety seriously -- highlighted by the Buffalo crash that killed 50 people in February.
Members of major U.S. airlines and regional carriers are meeting at the conference to ensure regional planes and their pilots are meeting safety standards.

The Dallas News takes a sarcastic tone on the conference writing...

“I wish I had a dime for every time I've heard an airline executive tell an investor conference that his or her airline was ‘well prepared.’ For that matter, I wish had a dollar for every time that executives use the word ‘challenging.’”

The New York Times takes a closer look into a primary cause of regional flight crashes - the work conditions pilots face.

A former regional pilot told the Times that many regional pilots, paid entry-level wages that are sometimes no higher than a job at McDonald’s, can’t afford a place to sleep.



“I know a guy who bought a car that barely ran and parked it in the employee lot at his base airport, and slept in his car six or seven times a month.”

But USA Today doesn’t believe it’s poor pay that puts passengers at risk – but pilots failing their flight tests. Infact in almost all of the serious regional flight crashes over the last 10 years a pilot onboard had failed tests – quote - multiple times.

“In the lone case in which pilots didn't have multiple failures since becoming licensed, the co-pilot was fired after the non-fatal crash for falsifying his job application.”

ABC News backs this perspective – telling major airlines to stop skimping ...

“After a string of accidents in the early 1990s, new rules were supposed to make the commuter carriers just as safe as the major airlines, and the industry says, they are. ‘This is all one industry, one level of safety and its something that everybody in the industry is committed to 24/7.’ But in the last seven years more than 150 people have lost their lives in regional airline accidents compared to just one person in a major airline crash. Quite frankly I lay the blame not on the regionals, but on the major airlines. They’ve outsourced their flying to the regionals to the lowest bidder.”

So what do you think— can this conference really make a difference?  Will regional flying become safer?

Securing Safety Standards

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Jun 16, 2009

Securing Safety Standards

“Pilot training is now a growing concern as the number of regional aircraft, smaller planes that are cheaper to fly, takes off. More than one in five passengers boarding planes in 2008 were on regional jets, a 42% increase since 2003. ... of all the regional crashes in this century in the last decade there were eight and in seven of the eight the NTSB faulted the pilot training and the pilot performance in the cockpit.” (CBS)


It’s called the Regional Airline Safety Summit and is being held after a series of regional carriers aren’t taking safety seriously -- highlighted by the Buffalo crash that killed 50 people in February.
Members of major U.S. airlines and regional carriers are meeting at the conference to ensure regional planes and their pilots are meeting safety standards.

The Dallas News takes a sarcastic tone on the conference writing...

“I wish I had a dime for every time I've heard an airline executive tell an investor conference that his or her airline was ‘well prepared.’ For that matter, I wish had a dollar for every time that executives use the word ‘challenging.’”

The New York Times takes a closer look into a primary cause of regional flight crashes - the work conditions pilots face.

A former regional pilot told the Times that many regional pilots, paid entry-level wages that are sometimes no higher than a job at McDonald’s, can’t afford a place to sleep.



“I know a guy who bought a car that barely ran and parked it in the employee lot at his base airport, and slept in his car six or seven times a month.”

But USA Today doesn’t believe it’s poor pay that puts passengers at risk – but pilots failing their flight tests. Infact in almost all of the serious regional flight crashes over the last 10 years a pilot onboard had failed tests – quote - multiple times.

“In the lone case in which pilots didn't have multiple failures since becoming licensed, the co-pilot was fired after the non-fatal crash for falsifying his job application.”

ABC News backs this perspective – telling major airlines to stop skimping ...

“After a string of accidents in the early 1990s, new rules were supposed to make the commuter carriers just as safe as the major airlines, and the industry says, they are. ‘This is all one industry, one level of safety and its something that everybody in the industry is committed to 24/7.’ But in the last seven years more than 150 people have lost their lives in regional airline accidents compared to just one person in a major airline crash. Quite frankly I lay the blame not on the regionals, but on the major airlines. They’ve outsourced their flying to the regionals to the lowest bidder.”

So what do you think— can this conference really make a difference?  Will regional flying become safer?

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