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To thunderous applause from alphabet groups, the House passed a bill that will force the FAA to go through a formal rulemaking process to institute its controversial sleep apnea measures. As we reported in November, FAA Air Surgeon Dr. Fred Tilton sent a newsletter to air medical examiners telling them that any pilot with a body mass index of 40 or higher would have to undergo expensive evaluation at a sleep clinic to determine if he or she has obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) to maintain their certification. Read More
The House Transportation Committee has approved a bill that would ban passengers from talking on their cellphones in flight. The bill, which still must be debated by the full House, would ban only voice communications and would allow passengers to text, go online and email while on aircraft. A similar bill has also been proposed in the Senate. Read More
Pilots must not use their laptops, iPads, or any other electronic device for personal use at any time while operating a Part 121 aircraft, whether for a passenger or cargo operation, the FAA said on Tuesday. The rule reinforces procedures that already are standard at airlines, the FAA said. The new electronic-device rule was first proposed in January 2013, and takes effect in 60 days. The Air Line Pilots Association opposed the rule, on the grounds that it was "unnecessary, unenforceable and may have a negative effect on safety." Read More
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Cessna will no longer sell the Skycatcher LSA, and the 80 or so aircraft still at the factory will be kept for use as spare parts, AOPA reported on Monday. A Cessna spokesman told AVweb an official statement would be released early on Tuesday, but by mid-afternoon the company had not posted an update. The Skycatcher has vanished from the Cessna website, and according to AOPA, "The decision [to stop selling the airplane] came in late January when dealers were notified that the aircraft is no longer in the Cessna lineup." Read More
The FAA has completed Supplemental Type Certification for the auto-throttle and anti-skid brake system on the Eclipse 550 twin-engine jet, Eclipse Aerospace said this week. The auto-throttle, developed in partnership with Innovative Solutions & Support, is a first for FAR Part 23 aircraft, Eclipse said. The new braking system requires only a few components and doesn't rely on hydraulics, Eclipse said, allowing for easy operation and maintenance. Read More
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At least 77 people, many of them women and children, may have been killed in the crash of an Algerian military transport aircraft Tuesday in northern Algeria. The C-130 was initially reported to be carrying 99 passengers and four crew but the Algerian government corrected that late Tuesday. Read More
Reports of lasers pointed at aircraft in flight have increased from 2,836 in 2010 to 3,960 in 2013 -- that's almost 11 incidents per day -- and this week the FBI and the Air Line Pilots Association joined with the FAA to announce a new "threat awareness campaign." The effort will target 12 cities with public service announcements, billboards, press releases, and events featuring ALPA pilots and law enforcement officials. They aim to spread the word that laser attacks on aircraft are a criminal offense punishable by up to five years in prison and a fine up to $250,000. Read More
VietJetAir set the bar for airliner orders at the Singapore Air Show on Tuesday with the purchase of 63 Airbus A320 aircraft worth about $6.4 billion. The show, which runs until Feb. 16, is expected to yield billions more in commercial, business and military orders. Read More
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Landing at the wrong airport, or starting an approach to the wrong airport, is not that unusual for commercial passenger and cargo aircraft, according to an analysis by The Associated Press this week. In an review of NASA safety reports, news accounts and other sources, the AP found 35 wrong-airport landings over the last 20 years and 115 wrong-airport approaches that broke off before touchdown. The inquiry was inspired by two recent wrong-airport landings -- a 747 freighter in Kansas and a Southwest 737, with passengers on board, in Missouri. Read More
AVweb's has compiled the results of our in-depth investigation into why airplanes land at the wrong airports. Read More
Meet the AVweb Team

AVweb is the world's premier independent aviation news resource, online since 1995. Our reporting, features, and newsletters are brought to you by:

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Tom Bliss

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Editor-in-Chief
Russ Niles

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Scott Simmons

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Rick Durden

Avionics Editor
Larry Anglisano

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Paul Berge

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Inviting the local citizenry to tour the airport might not have immediate benefits. But what do you lose if you don't do it? Read More
Electronics International || Click to 
Watch
Author and avid pilot Richard Bach is back at the keyboard and back in the cockpit after surviving a serious crash in his beloved SeaRey amphib Puff 18 months ago. AVweb's Russ Niles spoke with him about the crash, the new book he wrote about the crash, and the fourth part of "Jonathan Livingston Seagull." Spoiler Alert: Crashing an airplane and almost dying is actually kind of cool, but hospitals suck. Read More
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Although aircraft sales are still in the doldrums, Hartzell has stayed busy in its R&D shop, developing a range of new products that are lighter and more efficient than existing props. Hartzell's Joe Brown gave AVweb an update recently. Read More
Van's aircraft has dominated the kit market with the RV, line and now you can buy a factory-built RV-12 S-LSA model. Aviation Consumer's Larry Anglisano flew the RV-12 at the 2014 U.S. Light Sport Expo in Sebring, Florida. This video takes a detailed look at the aircraft. Read More