FAA's Friendly Reminder on Medical Requirements

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A U.S. commercial flight scheduled to operate from Paris to a U.S. destination was ramp checked by French civil aviation authorities, and as a result we all have a reminder from the FAA about first-class medical certification requirements for SICs in commercial operations, which in Europe includes both charter and corporate aircraft operators as well as airlines. In short, the InFO (information for operators) recently released by the FAA reminds us that in flag and supplemental operations, the SIC needs "to hold an airline transport pilot certificate when assigned to crews of three or more pilots, and requires the SIC to hold a first-class medical certificate." Further, U.S. pilots flying in foreign airspace are required to meet the requirements of the respective country. Many European countries specify compliance with ICAO licensing standards, which specify that SICs hold a first-class medical for international transportation. Don't forget that "aviation authorities of a foreign country could take action" against both the carrier and the individual if a pilot should fail to meet licensing requirements.