Aging GA Aircraft And The FAA

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The average GA aircraft is 35 years old, according to the FAA, and plenty of aircraft even older are still being flown every day. To address issues about how to regulate the fleet and keep it safe, the FAA's Small Airplane Directorate hosted an Aging Aircraft Summit in Kansas City, Mo., last week. Representatives from AOPA and EAA were there and agreed that one thing GA doesn't need is more regulation. "GA aircraft, regardless of age, are safe," said AOPA's Luis Gutierrez. The rate of accidents due to mechanical causes has remained stable over the past 20 years, he said. AOPA said the best way to increase GA safety and improve the maintenance of older aircraft is to educate pilots and aircraft owners. "Right now, there is a general consensus that more maintenance data needs to be made available to aircraft owners and A&Ps to ensure that aircraft are properly maintained," Gutierrez said.