SECOND PILOT MENTAL STRESS INCIDENT MAY MERIT PROACTIVE STATEMENT BY FAA COCERNING AVIATION SAFETY

Share this article: FacebooktwitterlinkedinFacebooktwitterlinkedin

ARTICLE: Airport security scrutinized after Colorado murder suspect steals SkyWest plane in Utah

072412

Many professions are experiencing increased stress in the workplace and society in general has seen more emotional stability issues than previous generations. The FAA has established thorough tests which assess the skills of pilots on an initial and recurrent basis; the standards for the physical health of ATPs are also rigorous.

This incident in Colorado/Utah is the second recent warning that these general trends may be impacting that cockpit. Clearly, these are but two incidents among a population of many, many PICs and SICs. Also, the stress evidenced seems to derive from different casual precipitants.

Thus, this is not a call that the sky is falling, but given the extraordinary attention which anything aviation attracts on Capitol Hill, the FAA might be well advised to issue a press release or some sort of notice in which the Administrator takes the initiative away from potential Congressional oversight. A well worded announcement issued soon might prevent overreaction. The pronouncement might include statements such as: these two events have been noticed, that the Civil Aviation Medical Institute is calling a panel to assess the risk and that any preventative actions, if needed, would be an expected result.

An ounce of prevention may be worth a pound of sure in this delicate, but highly visible issue of aviation safety.

Share this article: FacebooktwitterlinkedinFacebooktwitterlinkedin

2 Comments on "SECOND PILOT MENTAL STRESS INCIDENT MAY MERIT PROACTIVE STATEMENT BY FAA COCERNING AVIATION SAFETY"

  1. Jennifer Keenan | November 28, 2012 at 12:32 pm | Reply

    This is such a multi faceted issue that it does not do anyone in this industry well to even attempt to look at politically as a black and white issue. However, I would like to discuss a few things here that I think all professionals in the industry have given some thought to.
    First of all, as a new pilot who wants to make it to the top and is intersted in many different careers paths including commercial aviation, it often seems as though the FAA does everything that it can to detach the humanity from the pilots. When you start treating a specific group of people in a manner that makes them have to compartmentalize in ways that are naturally abnormal and unhealthy, it is going to present some issues. Last but not least is that the FAA should and must bring back the voulentary reporting system. The FAA, over the years has naturally put pilots on the defensive by not allowing them time and space to deal with any issues that they may have. No matter or you are or who you work for, you can not put a time limit on someone who is trying to reconcile with life.

    Thank-you

    Jennifer Keenan

  2. Jennifer Keenan | November 28, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Reply

    More recently, pilots mental health has come into question as an industry issue which is a really awesome thing. The FAA should not be the only ones who have a say in these issues though I do understand that most pilots will not want to because of fear of loosing their jobs and possibly their medicals. In this economy, it is not really a risk worth taking. However, it is importiant that the medical system looks at the disqualifying mental health conditions and maybe considers possible medical explanations for them. It is so easy to not use a well rounded approach to look at mental health, but in order to move policy forward, it must be looked at.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.