Representatives of the pilots of all the airline companies in the 38 National Member Associations of ECA were invited to meet in Brussels, yesterday. They were briefed on the consultations on the EU’s future pilot Flight Time Limitations rules currently being carried out by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
The delegates, who are responsible for negotiating with the management on behalf of the professional pilots in each airline company, were briefed on the ICAO and EU requirements for EASA rules to be based on the latest scientific research on pilot fatigue. They were also advised of the progress on the incorporation into the rules of EASA’s own scientific study (the so-called ‘Moebus Report’) which shows that today’s EU fatigue rules are inadequate.
The pilot Delegates pledged strong backing for ECA’s work and committed to support to the fullest extent possible in each country, any action in support of ECA’s position – that the EU Flight Time Limitations regulations must reflect published, peer reviewed scientific evidence.
“Professional Pilots take their safety role extremely seriously – indeed it is the very basis of our professionalism” said Captain Martin Chalk, the President of ECA who had chaired the meeting. “It is fundamental for the safety of all on board a civil airliner – and under its flight-path – that the pilots are able to discharge their safety role free of the insidious effects of fatigue”.
Philip von Schöppenthau, Secretary General of ECA, added that “A tragic accident costing the lives of 50 people in the US, Buffalo, triggered the Americans into modernising their pilot fatigue prevention rules based on extensive references to existing worldwide scientific evidence. We will not allow the EU to miss this opportunity – Europe should not need its own accident before the flying public is protected from fatigued pilots.”
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