Call for 1,500 Flight Hours and Stronger Qualitative Elements
Buffalo, New York- January 3, 2012 – After missing their thirty-year old daughter for yet another holiday season, the parents of Flight 3407 victim Lorin Maurer challenged Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood and acting FAA Administrator Michael Huerta to issue strong new requirements for the Airline Transport Pilot rating, in accordance with a powerful Congressional mandate in landmark aviation safety legislation passed last year. With regional airlines stooping to lower and lower levels to hire their entry-level first officers, often right out of flight school, the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ have made this FAA rulemaking effort their highest priority.
“To Lorin, Christmas was the perfect combination of the important things in life… Family, Faith, Food, and Fun. At Lorin’s insistence we would meet at her apartment in Princeton, New Jersey on Christmas Eve and go into New York City to experience the magic of the season as a family, ending the day with Christmas Eve Mass at St Patrick’s Cathedral. Lorin always had a way of making each year special,” shared her parents Scott and Terry Maurer, of Moore, South Carolina. “Her laugh and smile were such a gift to all of us, but now all that remains is our memories. In redesigning the ATP, the FAA has an opportunity to shape future generations of regional airline pilots so that other parents do not have to miss their Lorin each Christmas. The quantitative requirement of 1,500 flight hours will ensure that all initial hires have significantly more hands-on experience in the cockpit, and the strengthened qualitative requirements will make sure that they have the best possible preparation to transition to flying the complex planes utilized by commercial airlines. It is our fervent hope that the FAA does not cave in to industry pressure and water down what Congress intended in unanimously passing P.L. 111-216.
” From a series of Congressional hearings in the aftermath of the NTSB’s investigation of Flight 3407, the requirement that all new-hire first officers possess an ATP license and 1,500 flight hours became one of the central pillars of reforming the nation’s regional airlines, which account for over half of all flights flown in the United States, as well as the last six fatal crashes. The family group’s push for action on this rulemaking is part of their ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ campaign to highlight key elements of their ‘One Level of Safety’ drive for all passengers traveling on the nation’s regional airlines.