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March 7, 2014

“OSA has never been identified as a causal or contributing factor in a single fatal aviation accident.” —Letter to U.S. Senate

 

NAAA along with a coalition of GA groups sent a letter to all 100 members of the U.S. Senate March 4 urging senators to support swift passage of S.1941, a companion bill to House legislation passed last month that would require the FAA to go through an open rulemaking process to set rules related to obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and James Inhofe (R-OK) introduced the bill.


“OSA has never been identified as a causal or contributing factor in a single fatal aviation accident,” the letter says. “Furthermore, the policy would unjustly rescind the medical certificate for certain pilots until they have undergone burdensome and costly screening for OSA before being allowed to reapply for their medical clearance under a lengthy special issuance process, during which the pilot is either unable to fly or earn a living as a pilot or air traffic controller.”

The FAA’s proposed sleep apnea policy, which would require pilots with a body mass index over 40 or neck size greater than 17 to undergo screening and treatment for OSA, was placed on an indefinite hold in December by the agency following a vocal, rancorous outcry by the GA community to this seemingly arbitrary proposal based on questionable science.

The Congressional Budget Office has determined that the legislation would have no significant impact on the budget. S.1941 is currently in the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee where it has yet to be taken up.

Orignally found at the NAAA’s website.

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