July 2, 2013
By Jim Moore
Federal officials have yet to respond to AOPA’s demand for information (and explanations) regarding the increasingly frequent detention and search of law-abiding pilots by agents of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Customs and Border Protection—well inside the national borders.
AOPA continues to gather new reports from pilots with experiences similar to those first reported by AOPA Online in May. AOPA Manager of Aviation Security Tom Zecha said the online survey need not be fully completed to be useful, though the more data supplied, the better.
Zecha said he has heard positive feedback from members who appreciate the handy kneeboard-formatted checklist with detailed recommendations on how to respond to ground inspection and search demands (other than routine ramp checks conducted by FAA staff). The checklist will be published as a tear-out insert in the August issue of AOPA Pilot.
AOPA has yet to receive a response to a June 19 letter to acting CBP Commissioner Thomas S. Winkowski that noted the agency’s failure to respond to previous Freedom of Information requests within the time frame required by law, and gave the agency until July 20 to respond before the association pursues “other remedies.”
AOPA Online Associate Editor Jim Moore joined AOPA in 2011 and is an instrument-rated private pilot who enjoys competition aerobatics.
General Aviation Statistics,
The Flying Physicians Association (FPA) has become the latest group to lend support to third-class medical reform and urge government officials to speed up their review of the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). The NPRM would expand the number of pilots who could fly without needing to obtain a third-class medical certificate, a standard that has been successfully used by sport pilots for a decade.
There is no shortage of pilots in eastern Washington, but there does seem to be a scarcity of clubs in that part of the country.
A survey of flying doctors found that 80 percent favor third class medical reform.
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