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The Current UK Rule
What EASA Is Proposing
What That Means

3 early starts in a row

7 early starts in a row

More than double the number of early starts in a row. Not safe.

95 hours in 14 days

110 hours in 14days

15% more duty over 2 weeks. Not safe.

3 pilots needed on many long-haul flights

Only 2 pilots needed on some of the longest flights

Only 2 pilots needed even on flights to the West Coast of the USA. No opportunity to get rest in flight for the landing

Maximum 10:15 hours for a two sector night flight night

Maximum 11:00 hours at night

Scientists view that it should be capped at 10:00 Hours

Extensions on the day only if the Captain thinks it’s safe. Planned extensions only with lots of caveats

The airline can extend by 1 hour at the planning stage, twice a week with no caveats

Airlines can routinely plan to extend flying hours rather than it being solely the Captain’s decision

Many restrictions around pilots being called for duty on days off so that they can plan rest

Can be called at any time on any day with no restrictions

Pilots will never be able to guarantee that their sleep or rest  or even their days off won’t be interrupted

Maximum 12 hours home standby and flight duty starts to clock up after 6 hours

Possible 16 hours on standby and flight duty only starts to clock up after 8 hours

Pilots can spend over 30% longer on standby and so could be landing aircraft having been awake for 24 hours

Airlines can only delay pilots’ report time on the day by 4 hours before flight duty starts to clock up

Limited restrictions on delayed reporting

Pilots could be repeatedly delayed at home for unlimited periods and then still expected to come to work and operate a full 14 hour maximum duty, and may, therefore, be landing their aircraft after having been awake for excessive periods.

     
What’s happening?

The EU is planning on bringing in new regulations for pilots’ flying hours which will replace the ones we currently have in the UK. The problem is that what they are proposing will see pilot flying more tired, more often.

Pilot fatigue is a serious problem around the world. It is was a factor in a tragic accident of Colgan Air Flight 3407 and has also been a factor in a number of other accidents

The UK has one of the best sets of ‘flight time limitations’ regulations in Europe. The new rules will see Britain having to reduce its safety standards to satisfy the EU’s harmonisation agenda, and we can’t support that. The agency who drew up the rules, the European Aviation Safety Agency, got this wrong from the beginning. Their mistake was not to put science and medical evidence at the heart of their plans. The result is an unsafe and unscientific set of regulations which could see pilots landing after being awake for 22 hours or more.

On this website you will find views expressed by the people who know the most about pilot fatigue – pilots. You can explore all the information and data available on this important issue on the Resources page and, importantly, you can find out how the EU have got this so wrong.

What’s next?

MEPs in the European Parliament and national government Ministers will be voting on these proposals in the next few weeks. The view of pilots and safety campaigners right across Europe is that they should be rejected so that a new set of proposals can be drawn up with safety at the heart.

If you’re an MEP or a member of the public who wants to know what you can do to help ensure that we keep flying safe, click here (LINK).