FAA Final Pilot Rest Rule - Proposed

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  • Date: August 26, 2011

In 2009, a Colgan Air turboprop plane crashed near Buffalo, New York. Investigators looking into the crash pinpointed pilot fatigue as cause of the accident in which 50 people were killed.

The incident forced the FAA to finally propose legislation regarding pilot rest times and fatigue – regulation that hadn’t been revised in decades despite the growth of the commercial and cargo airline industry. Fatigue experts, pilot unions, airlines and sleep researchers were consulted in creating the proposed rule. The rules would have given pilots longer rest periods between shifts and reduce the maximum hours they can fly under conditions deemed fatiguing.

The proposed rule was based on the latest scientific understanding of how fatigue slows human reflexes and erodes judgment.

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