FAA standardizes Part 135 pilot training

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The FAA has produced a curriculum to standardize and streamline pilot training for Part 135 aircraft operators in the USA.

In guidance published this week, the FAA outlined a framework for Part 142 training centers, which use flight simulators, to offer standardized training for pilots at non-scheduled charters and air taxis covered under Part 135 of the Federal Aviation Regulations.

The curriculum has taken more than four years working with the aviation industry to produce.

Many Part 135 operators send their pilots to established training centers, but FAA rules still require them to develop their own programs and keep up with paperwork associated with required check rides and recurrent training. Under a standardized curriculum, operators will “fly as they train” and “train as they fly”, said the FAA.

FAA Administrator Steve Dickson said, “A standard training curriculum is a great example of the FAA and industry working together. By developing a model that works for operators of all sizes, we can improve safety by enhancing consistency.”

The program is voluntary, but it is expected to be widely used throughout the industry. An industry committee composed of subject matter experts will develop and recommend a standardized curriculum for an aircraft or series of aircraft. If accepted by the FAA, the curriculum would be available for use nationwide.

In addition to providing more consistent training, testing and checking framework for Part 135 operators, the FAA said that a standardized curriculum will offer operators an alternative to developing and seeking approval for their own customized training programs.

The FAA anticipates that the first standardized curricula will be available for training center and operator use next year.

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Ben has worked all of his career as a journalist and now editor, covering almost all aspects of technology, engineering and industry. In the last 20 years he has written on subjects from nuclear submarines and autonomous cars to future design and manufacturing technologies and commercial aviation. Latterly editor of a leading engineering magazine, he brings an eye for a great story and lots of experience to the team.

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