From user fees to local airport closures, your direct personal input can affect the political decisions that impact you as a pilot — AVweb has collected links and information to help you drive your message home. First, obviously you’ll need to know who your government representatives are. If you don’t, find your zip code’s “plus-four” extension here and write it down. With that information, find a link to your U.S. Representative’s (Congressman/woman’s) contact information and web site by clicking here, for Representatives. (An alternate source allows you to search a clickable map and lists of representatives, by state.) The process for finding Senators is easier, just select your state from the pulldown menu (upper right) on this page, for Senators. You’ll be provided with contact information and web site links. For a starting point to find Senators, U.S. Representatives, governors and state legislators, or to contact the White House click here, for one stop shopping. Next, the content of your letter will matter.
When contacting your representatives, AOPA suggests that, aside from your opinion, a persuasive letter should include statistics like the number of pilots in your district and state; the number of airports; and the jobs/economic impact generated locally by general aviation. AOPA members are encouraged to contact AOPA for help with that. For non-members, Scripps Howard New Service recently organized statistics that include the total pilots, total GA aircraft and total public/private airports, listed by state. The information was collected from the FAA, AOPA and the TSA. Find the data, here and make your voice heard.
I will have a press release to send you, how shall I proceed?
Happy new year
I am registered with a web but do no get avflash sent to my email. What’s wrong?
L hunt @email@example.com
The NOTAM system failing shouldn’t have shut down the air traffic control system. I have owned 5 airplanes and have 1600 hours of flight time. I spent 33 years working as an air traffic controller, supervisor and district lever air traffic manager between Miami and Anchorage.
Losing the NOTAM system was an easy work around. Long story short, being woke and identity politics shutdown the system. Pete Buttigieg is not qualified. Buttigieg doesn’t know any more about the air traffic system than a homeless guy. Buttigieg, in my opinion, was selected because he is gay. And if he would have simply gone to work, maybe he could have helped prevent the failure.
First of all, NOTAM once stood for Notices to Airmen. Now its Notices to Air Missions. An example of being woke and the importance of identity politics. In 1977, when I started my air traffic control career, the vast majority of air traffic controllers were white males that were military veterans with proven air traffic experience. Then Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action began, and managers were required to hire a minority even if a more qualified and experienced white male applied.
And in 1977, my facility didn’t have computers. We passed flight information manually, just called the next facility 30 minutes prior, gave them the aircraft’s route information and mission accomplished. Today, they shut the system down. The FAA and the controller’s union have been dumbing down the air traffic system for decades. And yesterday is the result.
The FAA doesn’t teach the basics anymore. They argue how reliable their equipment is. I argue, while that is true, most applicants today would not successfully complete the training course if they had to learn the basics. Before I could work my first approach/departure control position, I had to prove I could work the position without any radar coverage, i.e. non-radar. In a non-radar environment, I had to memorize all the airways and assign course that didn’t conflict using only my brain and a radio. Today, they just shut the system down or slow it down and give the airspace to another facility.
When I attended the FAA Academy, if your grade average was 69.99 or less, you were fired immediately. Today, grades are gone, and everyone graduates. I have personally worked with controller trainees that took 15 plus years to certify. And you can thank FAA Management, Affirmative Action, and the controller’s union for that.
A simple work around, tell all pilots the NOTAM system is out of service, and it is up to him/her to obtain the information. The American Airlines office in Tallahassee could ask the airport manager what was closed then email the information to American’s main dispatch office. Then the dispatch office could email the information to all the airports they serve. Then the pilots had the needed information to operate their flights safely. Problem solved. But shutting down the system is what being woke gets you.
So, that is my opinion. just like our universities and colleges, the air traffic system has been dumbed down, also.
Paul and LHunt got it totally correct. I was the CTO for business for DoD recently for 5 years. I spent much time on the other side of the Potomac. As a pilot i was intensely interested in anything aviation. The FAA isn’t the only part of the Government that is woke. Maybe asleep is a better word. The swamp does not describe the incompetence at every level. Contractors on what are essentially no cut cost plus procurements run our Government. Make a mistake and more money is thrown at the problem. It is all so complicated that even if someone in leadership could find the heads to lop off, they would wait him out till the end of the administration.
I was one of four or five pilots on duty during 9-11. As a result I was one pilot flying on 9-12. I have prepared a short (2-3 page) analysis of our flying during the ensuing days. The airport was the only airport authorized for flight during that time and holds the distinction of being the “the busiest airport in the Nation” for those days.
If interested, let me know.