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News from ALPA International

February 12, 2013

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In This Issue:

FAA Airline Pilot Fatigue Analysis Flawed
In a Federal Aviation Administration analysis of its new airline pilot fatigue rules, the administration has seriously overestimated the cost, and undervalued the benefits, of applying the flight- and duty-time restrictions and minimum rest requirements to all-cargo pilots, according to the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l.

“When realistic costing is applied and the benefits to pilots’ health are considered, an investment far less than what the FAA estimates would be required to bring all airline pilots under one set of fatigue regulations, regardless of whether they fly passengers or cargo in their aircraft,” said Capt. Lee Moak, ALPA’s president.

Read more.

Call to Action! Support the Safe Skies Act

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EGL Pilots Object to American–Republic Purchase Agreement
The ALPA pilots of American Eagle Airlines filed a formal objection to the capacity purchase agreement recently announced between American Airlines and Republic Airways. The objection was filed in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

The proposed agreement between American and Republic would severely divert the flying of large regional jets to a competitor and would needlessly undermine the value of American Eagle, threatening the livelihood of Eagle’s pilots and other employees at the airline. American Eagle, a wholly owned subsidiary of AMR, has provided the substantial majority of regional flying for American Airlines, which is also an AMR subsidiary.

Read more.

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More on Sequester and Its Impact on Aviation
According to a recent congressional report, the impact of sequestration on our nation’s aviation system could be severe. Previous reports have estimated that up to 5,000 flights per day could be canceled and 12 percent of air traffic controllers laid off as a result of the cuts.

The most recent congressional report warns across-the-board budget cuts that are set to take effect on March 1 (barring intervention by Congress and the White House), would limit the FAA’s ability to move forward with NextGen modernization. The FAA’s capital program, which funds maintenance and improvements to the air traffic control system and facilities, has already experienced significant cuts of more than $205 million over the last three years.

Read more.

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Membership Volunteers Learn the Ropes

Capt. Mark Nagel

ALPA’s one-and-a-half day Membership Seminar, a training session/refresher course for pilot Membership volunteers, kicked off this afternoon with a welcome and introductions from ALPA vice president–administration Capt. Bill Couette and Membership Committee chairman Capt. Mark Nagel (PCL). The two discussed their roles, the Association’s resources, and the immense network of pilots and professional staff available to help support ALPA pilots.

Read more.

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Implementation Guidelines Issued for FMLA Protections
Last week, the U.S. Department of Labor issued a final rule implementing the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) protections for airline flight crews as well as new military leave provisions.

In 2009, with ALPA’s support, Congress passed the Airline Flight Crew Technical Corrections Act to assure that flightcrew members would be able to get the full benefits of the Family and Medical Leave Act, which were previously not afforded to pilots because of the unique nature of flight- and duty-time rules. The Labor Department followed key recommendations by ALPA in the approach it chose to adopt for these implementing regulations.

Read more.

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ATC Communications Go Voiceless
Pilots and air traffic controllers at Memphis International Airport have begun testing the use of the Data Communications Tower Automation Platform, or “Datacomm,” a key enabling technology for NextGen for live ATC instructions. Select FedEx Express flights are receiving pre-departure clearances via data messages rather than traditional voice transmissions. The long-term vision for FAA’s Datacomm program is to eventually replace voice communications for routine ATC instructions.

Datacomm is expected to be further tested at Newark Liberty International Airport this summer. Airlines participating in the Newark trial will include United Airlines, FedEx Express, and UPS.

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Airline Fatalities Reach New Low
Yesterday’s New York Times article titled “Airline Industry at Its Safest Since the Dawn of the Jet Age” points out that “It will be four years on Tuesday since the last fatal crash in the United States.”

The article continues, “Globally, last year was the safest since 1945, with 23 deadly accidents and 475 fatalities, according to the Aviation Safety Network, an accident researcher.”

Authors Jad Mouawad and Christopher Drew note that “In the last five years, the death risk for passengers in the United States has been one in 45 million flights.”

Read the New York Times article.

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Aviation is Constantly Changing, Keep Up with “ALPA Daily”
The aviation industry is changing faster than ever before. The new “ALPA Daily” feature at will keep you informed of the latest industry developments and analysis from around the globe. Check it out each day to stay up-to-date on the news that affects pilots and the piloting profession.

ALPA members can sign up to receive ALPA Daily in their e-mail:

Visit this link.
• Log in with your ALPA member number and password.
• Select “E-mail Distribution Lists.”
• Check the box for “ALPA Daily.”
• Submit your request.

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Teens Travel Abroad with Help of IYE
Do you want your child to travel abroad, learn about a new culture, and have the experience of a lifetime? Teens of airline families can make this dream a reality with the help of International Youth Exchange (IYE), an innovative program that has matched more than 3,000 teens over the past 18 years.

IYE connects teens, ages 14–19, with a similarly aged youth in another country. Using their family’s airline benefits, the youths spend two weeks in each other’s homes—usually over summer break. Participants will improve their language capabilities, see how families live in different cultures, and greatly expand their world view.

Additionally, both airline families benefit by hosting a youth from abroad, and many times the exchange results in lifelong friendships.

IYE has matched teens in a wide range of countries, including the United States, France, Spain, England, Germany, Austria, Italy, Ireland, Portugal, Switzerland, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia.

To learn more about how to take part in an International Youth Exchange, please visit

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On February 10, 1960, a Delta Air Lines Convair 880 flew from San Diego to Miami, setting a transcontinental speed record of 3 hours, 31 minutes, and 54 seconds. The next day, Delta flew from Chicago to Miami with another Convair 880, reaching a top speed of 715 mph and completing the trip in 1 hour, 50 minutes, and 55 seconds.

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Feedback & E-mail Address Changes
Questions or comments on this FastRead? Give us your feedback at

If you have moved or changed your ISP or e-mail address, please update your ALPA records. If you don’t, you will no longer receive the ALPA FastRead and other e-mail bulletins and notices, and once your postal forwarding order expires, you’ll no longer receive the magazine and other ALPA mail. You can do it yourself by going to and logging in. Go to “My ALPA” in the menu at the top of the page, and from there, you’ll be instructed how to make the necessary changes.

If you don’t have access to the members-only section of, you can e-mail your requests by sending them to Be sure to include your member number or enough other information so that we can identify you in the membership database, and tell us what information needs to be updated.

Please note that it is not sufficient just to notify your LEC or MEC of these changes—you should register them with the ALPA Membership Department in Herndon.

Can’t remember your member number or how to log in? Need information about your ALPA insurance programs? These and other questions about ALPA services can be answered by contacting

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Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l
1625 Massachusetts Avenue NW | Washington, DC 20036 | 703-689-2270