Initial Pilot Training: Better Management Controls Are Needed to Improve FAA Oversight, Report to Congressional Requesters   [open pdf - 5MB]

From the Highlights: "Regional airlines have experienced the last six fatal commercial airline accidents, and pilot performance has been cited as a potential contributory factor in four of these accidents. As a result, Congress and others have raised questions about, among other issues, the initial pilot education and training required before pilots can be hired by airlines, at which time they receive further training. The initial training is provided by pilot schools overseen by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). As requested, this report discusses (1) the various types of U.S. pilot schools, how they compare, and associated issues; (2) key similarities and differences between the U.S. and international approaches to pilot training; and (3) how and to what extent FAA carries out oversight of pilot training and certification. To address these issues, GAO [Government Accountability Office] reviewed literature, legislation, regulations, and FAA documents and inspection and enforcement data; interviewed agency and industry officials; and studied the training approach in Europe because of the different training model and visited four European countries. To improve oversight of pilot certification, GAO recommends that FAA develop a comprehensive system to (1) measure its performance in meeting the agency's annual inspection requirements for pilot schools and pilot examiners and (2) better understanding the nature and scope of discretionary inspections for flight instructors. FAA generally agreed with our recommendations."

Report Number:
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Government Accountability Office: http://www.gao.gov/
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