US Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill unanimously passes Senate

Read us | Listen to us | Watch us |Events| Subscribe|


Afrikaans Afrikaans Albanian Albanian Amharic Amharic Arabic Arabic Armenian Armenian Azerbaijani Azerbaijani Basque Basque Belarusian Belarusian Bengali Bengali Bosnian Bosnian Bulgarian Bulgarian Cebuano Cebuano Chichewa Chichewa Chinese (Simplified) Chinese (Simplified) Corsican Corsican Croatian Croatian Czech Czech Dutch Dutch English English Esperanto Esperanto Estonian Estonian Filipino Filipino Finnish Finnish French French Frisian Frisian Galician Galician Georgian Georgian German German Greek Greek Gujarati Gujarati Haitian Creole Haitian Creole Hausa Hausa Hawaiian Hawaiian Hebrew Hebrew Hindi Hindi Hmong Hmong Hungarian Hungarian Icelandic Icelandic Igbo Igbo Indonesian Indonesian Italian Italian Japanese Japanese Javanese Javanese Kannada Kannada Kazakh Kazakh Khmer Khmer Korean Korean Kurdish (Kurmanji) Kurdish (Kurmanji) Kyrgyz Kyrgyz Lao Lao Latin Latin Latvian Latvian Lithuanian Lithuanian Luxembourgish Luxembourgish Macedonian Macedonian Malagasy Malagasy Malay Malay Malayalam Malayalam Maltese Maltese Maori Maori Marathi Marathi Mongolian Mongolian Myanmar (Burmese) Myanmar (Burmese) Nepali Nepali Norwegian Norwegian Pashto Pashto Persian Persian Polish Polish Portuguese Portuguese Punjabi Punjabi Romanian Romanian Russian Russian Samoan Samoan Scottish Gaelic Scottish Gaelic Serbian Serbian Sesotho Sesotho Shona Shona Sindhi Sindhi Sinhala Sinhala Slovak Slovak Slovenian Slovenian Somali Somali Spanish Spanish Sudanese Sudanese Swahili Swahili Swedish Swedish Tajik Tajik Tamil Tamil Thai Thai Turkish Turkish Ukrainian Ukrainian Urdu Urdu Uzbek Uzbek Vietnamese Vietnamese Xhosa Xhosa Yiddish Yiddish Zulu Zulu
US_Capitol_Building_at_night

The Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill passed in the US Senate on Monday night by a unanimous vote.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill passed in the US Senate on Monday night by a unanimous vote. The bill advances the modernization of the nation’s air traffic control system as it moves away from a radar-based infrastructure in favor of GPS technology and also includes the Passenger Bill of Rights, which mandates that aircraft cannot remain delayed on the tarmac for longer than 3 hours before having to return to the gate.

The new air traffic control system, known as NextGen, uses a satellite-based platform to keep track not only of aircraft, but also of vehicles on the ground at airports. The costly system should allow planes to fly closer together safely and avoid runway incursions. The GPS-based system also allows controllers to tailor each aircraft’s approach for landing, which should save fuel and cut down on late arrivals, according to an FAA fact sheet.

Embedded in the bill is a “Passengers Bill of Rights,” whose centerpiece is a rule requiring delayed commercial planes to return to the gate after three hours on the taxiway. Alternatively, the rule allows the airline to send buses to take passengers off the plane so the aircraft doesn’t lose its place in line to take off.

By passing the US$34.5 billion bill, the Senate “has spoken boldly and clearly that the airlines must treat their customers fairly and with decency, or face consequences,” said Kate Hanni, executive director of Flyers’ Rights.

The bill also addresses several issues raised by plane crashes and other incidents over the past several years. In response to the Colgan Air crash near Buffalo, New York, in February 2009, the bill tightens pilot hiring, testing, training, and rest requirements for large and small airlines. The bill also bans the use of personal electronic devices in the cockpit. Two Northwest Airlines pilots lost their jobs and their licenses as a result of an incident in October when they missed the Minneapolis, Minnesota, airport by more than 100 miles because they were distracted by their personal laptop computers.

The House passed its own version of the FAA reauthorization last year. A House-Senate conference committee will have to iron out the differences between the two bills before a final version is approved and sent to the president.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email