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Monday, December 3, 2007

DGCA addresses pilot shortage by bringing down flying limits

Hi flyers,

there is good news again, DGCA, this month, has addressed the severe pilot shortage in the sub-continent by pushing down the limits of flying hours of captains and trainee pilots.

With the problem of pilot shortage in the country assuming alarming proportions, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is now mulling allowing pilots to fly five more hours per week on both domestic and international routes. Curiously though, the number of landings a pilot can make in a day on the domestic circuit is being brought down from six to five.
The proposals have been made in a bid to lay down rules for airline operators regarding the flight duty time limitations and flight time limitations (FDTLs & FTLs) for crews. Till now, only an Aeronautical Information Circular, regarded more of an advisory, was in place. Now, DGCA has invited comments from airline operators and professional bodies by November 17 on the proposed changes to be introduced in the FDTLs & FTLs.
In the draft Civil Aviation Requirements (CARs), the DGCA proposes:
• To increase the Flight Duty Time for domestic air operations (including those to neighbouring countries) to 12 hours as against the current 11 hours during a period of 24 consecutive hours.
• To increase the weekly cap on Flight Time from 30 hours to 35 hours for both domestic as well as international operations.
• That no crew member on a domestic flight should make more than five landings in any 24 consecutive hours. Earlier, six landings were permitted.