Hearing to Be Focused on Reducing Regulatory Burdens

Buffalo, New York – February 1, 2017 – In conjunction with Wednesday’s trip to Washington to commemorate the 8 year anniversary of the tragic crash of Continental Flight 3407, the families and friends of those lost in the February 2009 crash announced that they would be in attendance at Wednesday morning’s Senate Commerce Committee hearing focused on reducing regulations.


“Certainly it is very in vogue in Washington these days to denounce regulations in general, and we have no doubt that the airlines and their lobbyists are taking advantage of every opportunity to jump on the bandwagon,” declared John Kausner of Clarence Center, New York, who lost his twenty-four year old daughter Ellyce when Flight 3407 crashed less than a mile away from the Kausner family home. “But before any of these lobbyists, or members of Congress for that matter, try to cry foul about the ‘burden’ of any safety regulations, let us remind them of what a true ‘burden’ is. A true burden is being haunted every single day for the past eight years by the needless loss of Elly and everyone else on that flight, and knowing that common-sense regulations and stronger government oversight of regional airlines could have easily prevented this crash from happening. So hopefully our presence at this hearing will serve as a strong testimonial that regulations serve a very necessary function in our country, particularly when it comes to safety.”

Wednesday’s hearing will be held at 10:00 a.m. in Room 216 of the Hart Senate Office Building. In addition to attending the hearing, the group will be conducting outreach on both sides of Capitol Hill, with an eye towards the FAA Reauthorization process, which is being undertaken by the Commerce Committee and the House’s Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.

“With the new administration in place, it is absolutely critical that we once again make the case for the landmark regional airline safety legislation that was unanimously enacted by both Houses of Congress back in 2010,” stated Susan Bourque of East Aurora, New York, who lost her sister and noted 9/11 widow and activist Beverly Eckert. “Since then, the FAA has taken major strides in the areas of pilot training, fatigue, qualifications and safety management systems to set the safety bar even higher for regional airlines. This heightened emphasis and awareness has led to an unprecedented era of safety in our commercial aviation system, with zero fatal crashes in eight years. We cannot give in to lobbying pressure to water down or roll back these initiatives, and furthermore, we must continue to push for the completion of the remaining two provisions in the bill, the Pilot Record Database and the rulemaking on Pilot Professionalism. As we begin another FAA Reauthorization cycle, we are counting on President Trump and his administration, as well as Senators Thune, Nelson, Blunt and Cantwell with the Commerce Committee, and Congressmen Shuster, DeFazio, LoBiondo, and Larsen on the House T&I Committee, to stand up for ‘One Level of Safety’ on behalf of every passenger boarding a flight operated by a regional airline.”