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Flight time limitations (FTL)

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Flight Time Limitations (FTL)

The new European Implementing Rule for Flight and Duty Time limitations (FTL) and Rest Requirements is expected for April 2013 with an expected implementation period of 18-24 months.

On 18 January 2012, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has issued its Comments Response Document (CRD) on its original Notice of Proposed Amendment (NPA) 2010-14 to harmonise and update the existing FTL rules taking into account recent scientific and medical evidence. The related EASA Opinion and Decision are scheduled for June 2012, after another public consultation which closed on 20 March 2012.

AIRE continuously informs and consults its members via e-mail and/or FTL Working Group meetings as appropriate. AIRE welcomes the fact that EASA has no safety concerns about the existing FTL rules and that there is no need for immediate action. However, AIRE is highly concerned that the proposed FTL rules include some new requirements and limitations which are not backed by scientific or medical evidence namely:

  • extended recovery rest following consecutive Early Starts
  • no extensions to flight duty periods starting before 7am
  • discontinuation of in-flight rest in an economy seat.

These new requirements and limitations would be extremely damaging to the European aviation industry, as numerous popular leisure flights operated by EU carriers would no longer be economically sustainable.

For more details, please click here for the full IACA position paper.