Flight 3407 Families Commemorate 10th Anniversary of Airline Safety Act Being Signed Into Law

Ushered in Unprecedented Era of Aviation Safety; Pilot Record Database All That Remains to Be Finalized

Buffalo, New York – July 29, 2020 – Saturday, August 1st, 2020 will mark the 10th anniversary of President Barack Obama signing Public Law 111-216, ‘The Airline Safety and Federal Aviation Administration Extension Act of 2010’ into law.  The bill was unanimously approved by Congress, passing the House of Representatives by voice vote and the Senate by unanimous consent.  The results of the law speak for themselves; new rules aimed at regional airline safety have been implemented addressing first officer qualification requirements, pilot fatigue, safety management systems, and pilot training and professionalism, and there has not been a fatal commercial airline crash on a U.S. carrier since the tragedy of Flight 3407 in February 2009.  The only provision of the law remaining to be implemented requires the creation of a comprehensive electronic pilot record database to be used by carriers as a tool in the hiring process.  In conjunction with the anniversary, the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ issue the following statement: 

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NTSB Finds FAA’s Failure to Meet Deadline on Pilot Records Database Led to Atlas Crash

Flight 3407 Families Call for Swift Completion of Final Rule, No Caving to Stakeholder Pressure

Buffalo, New York – July 15, 2020 – The ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ responded swiftly to Tuesday’s public board meeting of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) on the February 2019 Atlas Air cargo crash, which determined that slipshod aviation industry hiring practices and repeated delays by the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in implementing a pilot records database mandated by a 2010 safety law contributed to the fatal crash.  The group highlighted the NTSB’s findings (https://www.ntsb.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/NR20200714.aspx) and called on Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao and FAA Administrator Stephen Dickson to lead their agencies to a prompt completion of the rulemaking project for the database, currently targeted for September 30th, 90 days after the June 30th close of the public comment period on the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM).

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Flight 3407 Families Cite Atlas Air Crash in Calling on Chao, Dickson to Finalize Pilot Database

Comment Period Closed Monday on Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

Buffalo, New York – July 1, 2020 – With Monday’s closing of the comment period for the Federal Aviation Administration’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on the Pilot Record Database, the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ submitted their group’s comment and called on Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao and FAA Administrator Stephen Dickson to move quickly to finalize the rule and start the clock on bringing the industry into full compliance with it.  The group cited the National Transportation Safety Board’s December release of information from its investigation of the fatal Atlas Air/Amazon cargo crash back in February 2019 which revealed that the first officer was hired by Atlas without a full review of his previous training record, which included multiple failures and washouts at three regional carriers (https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-air-atlas-crash-pilot-unsafe-ntsb-2019-12).

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Flight 3407 Families Applaud Final Rule on Pilot Professional Development

Will Work Hand-in-Hand with Enhanced First Officer Standards; Pilot Database is Final Milestone Remaining from Safety Law

Buffalo, New York – February 25, 2020 – The ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ recognized the Federal Aviation Administration’s release of a final rule on ‘Pilot Professional Development’. The rule was mandated by the ‘Airline Safety and Federal Aviation Administration Extension Act of 2010,’ and marks another step towards full implementation of the law.

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Flight 3407 Families Remember Their Loved Ones and 737 MAX Victims on 11th Anniversary

Buffalo, New York – February 12, 2020 – Wednesday, February 12th, 2020 will mark the 11th anniversary of the tragic regional airline crash of Continental Flight 3407 operated by Colgan Air that took the lives of all on board and one man on the ground. It will also mark 11 years without any fatal crashes of U.S. commercial flights, the safest such period in our nation’s aviation history (previously, the U.S. had never gone more than thirty consecutive months without a fatal crash). This is a testament to the efforts of so many, and a powerful tribute to those who were needlessly lost. In conjunction with the anniversary, the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ issue the following statement:

Another year has passed. We continue to struggle with the elusive ‘new normal’. There are old photos, boxes of newspaper clippings, old clothes, and other mementos. Memories of sights and sounds and smells that we hold near and dear to our hearts, that we fight to keep from fading away as time marches on.

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Flight 3407 Families Mark Big Week in Washington

Press DOT/FAA on Database, Applaud Tough Questioning of Dickson, Remain Focused on FAA Oversight

Buffalo, New York – May 22, 2019 – Over ten years removed from the regional airline crash that tragically took the lives of their loved ones, the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ continued their aviation safety advocacy in Washington last week by attending two congressional hearings, including the Senate confirmation hearing for Stephen Dickson to be FAA Administrator. The group also highlighted a bipartisan House letter to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Acting FAA Administrator Daniel Elwell addressing continued delays in the Pilot Records Database, led by the Western New York House delegation and signed by members representing ten different states. (more…)

Flight 3407 Families to Attend Senate, House Hearings on Wednesday

Hearings to Shine Spotlight on Importance, Effectiveness of FAA Oversight

Buffalo, New York – May 14, 2019 – With aviation panels in both chambers scheduled to hold key hearings on Wednesday, the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ announced that group members would be in attendance at both events. The Senate Commerce Committee will be holding a confirmation hearing for Stephen Dickson, President Trump’s nominee to be FAA Administrator, while the House Aviation Subcommittee will be holding an oversight hearing on the status of the Boeing 737 Max. Besides a continuing focus on the full implementation of Public Law 111-216, the Airline Safety Act of 2010, the group is zeroing in on discussions of FAA oversight in the context of potential conflicts between industry interests and the safety of the flying public. (more…)

Flight 3407 Families Encouraged by Meeting with Chao

Transportation Secretary Offers Key Assurances on Pilot Qualifications, Database

Buffalo, New York – April 18, 2019 – After meeting with Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao on Wednesday, members of the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ were encouraged by her statements addressing two key provisions of the 2010 aviation safety law that was unanimously passed by Congress in response to the 2009 regional airline crash. (more…)

Flight 3407 Families to Attend Senate Aviation Safety Hearing on Wednesday

Highlight Delayed Pilot Records Database Implementation, Importance of Congressional Follow-Thru

Buffalo, New York – March 26, 2019 – With the Aviation Subcommittee of the Senate’s Commerce Committee scheduled to hold an aviation safety oversight hearing on Wednesday, the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ announced that they would be in attendance at the hearing. The group hailed Subcommittee Chairman Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Ranking Member Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) for holding the hearing, but challenged them to put actions behind words in the follow-up to the hearing, and highlighted the continued delays by the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the implementation of the Pilot Records Database (PRD), a provision adopted nearly 10 years ago in response to the fatal crash of Flight 3407. (more…)

Flight 3407 Families Honor Their Loved Ones on 10th Anniversary of Fatal Crash

Buffalo, New York – February 12, 2019 – Tuesday, February 12th, 2009 will mark the 10th anniversary of the tragic regional airline crash of Continental Flight 3407 operated by Colgan Air that took the lives of all on board and one man on the ground. The families and friends of those lost will gather in Buffalo to commemorate the victims in a series of events at the crash site on Long Street, at Forest Lawn Cemetery, and at the Flight 3407 Memorial at the Clarence Library. Additionally the entire Western New York community will recognize the anniversary as the Peace Bridge, Niagara Falls, Buffalo City Hall, Erie County Hall and other portions of the downtown skyline will be lit in red on the evening of the 12th.

In conjunction with the anniversary, the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ issued the following statement:

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