Cargo Carriers Lawyers and the Power of Dollars Overcomes Cargo Pilots Safety Rights of One Man One Vote.
Fatigue, the greatest Human Factors problem in commercial aviation, was introduced back into the recipe of severe hazards by the work of lobbying lawyers working for the US cargo carrier industry. US Transportation officials chose to succumb to the political pressure and apparently to the financial power of lobbyists who argued that commercial cargo carriers would be subject to undue financial pressures if the cargo airlines were required to operate safely.
Instead, it appears to me that these company lawyers argued to the FAA lawyers that there is not case law that cites fatigue as causing cargo crashes that impact the public. In my opinion, no one at the FAA acts as a safety manager or safety regulator or safety administrator but rather act as lawyers and consider events related to flight operations only from the point of view of what has happened in the past. But the FEDEX B727 Tallahassee, FL fatigue related crash did not take out a neighborhood and therefore didn’t affect the public, so it appears that to an FAA lawyer only administrator, this and other similar fatigue related cargo carrier mishaps do not affect their judgment of their ability to think legally.
Did the FAA lawyers or the cargo industry lawyers look at the huge casualty costs of operating under the federal regulations as they have existed and now exist?
If, as I believe, the lawyers were trained as safety regulators, they would see the risk that fatigued cargo pilots could crash into a city such as San Diego, Philadelphia, Newark, Louisville or any number of cities overflown by cargo pilots at 5-6am at the end of a fatiguing 16 hour day of 8 or more hours of flight time.
In my opinion, the FAA is not protecting the rights of citizen pilots flying for cargo carriers. It appears to me that the FAA, the US Federal Government, is not protecting the rights of citizens living under the flight path of cargo flights arriving at 5-6am in major city hub airports. Instead, it appears to me that elected and appointed US officials are choosing to give corporation lobbying lawyers better rights than individual US citizens, so that the corporations can make more money, while the safety of the public is not protected.
The FAA Safety Policy is “One Level of Safety.” However, it appears that the FAA has dragged out some old past century bureaucrats to recreate government of the dollar, by the dollar and for the dollar, instead of “of the people, by the people and for the people,” as noted by US President Abraham Lincoln in his famous Gettysburg Address.
It is my opinion the old style bureaucrats, who have so totally screwed up the management of safety in domestic commercial aviation for so many years, should instead leave aviation safety management to people who are experienced and by this degree qualified to make decisions of regulation.
The best example is to look at the terrible mess that the FAA’s regulations have had on the US commercial airline industry. I believe that it took more than 20 years of failed regulations to institute effective wind-shear, fatigue, baggage management and TCAS standards. Now it appears that they are involved in another 20-year struggle to handle effective crew training and human factors fatigue standards.
But then we should look at all of the lives lost in the air and on the ground, the airplanes destroyed, the property destroyed year after year for the past 40 years in US domestic airline disasters? The data shows thousands of lives lost, billions of dollars destroyed, all under commercial airline operations certified and regulated by the FAA.
Can the US really afford to re-create two levels of safety in commercial aviation? Was not that FAA policy already discredited years ago?
In my opinion it is now time that the FAA should be led by someone from the airline industry, someone who actually has some experience and therefore credentials as a successful aviation safety manager?
So, can anyone tell me if lawyers really study any aviation safety policy, theory or philosophy in law school? If so, I sure would like to see the law school syllabus reference, because I sure have not been able to find one.
I believe it is time for new leadership in aviation safety in America.