Imagine what might happen if you had to have a medial certificate just to rent a tiedown spot for your aircraft. That's been the case in Alaska under a rule that requires pilots at Ted Stevens Anchorage International and Lake Hood Seaplane Base to provide copies of their current FAA medical certificates. The state is now reviewing the law and AOPA is pushing to get the medical requirement removed. AOPA wrote to Alaskan officials, calling the requirement "unnecessary, discriminatory, and burdensome." AOPA said FAA medical certificates serve as a safety standard to ensure that pilots are medically fit to operate as pilot in command (PIC) - not as a permit to gain access to airport facilities. Pilots without a current medical still can fly an aircraft as long as another current, appropriately rated pilot on board acts as pilot in command. AOPA also noted that the requirement creates a costly burden for the state's airport staff because they need to keep track of each pilot's medical certificate and expiration date.
January 7, 2005