Air Regulation

Bill would require cargo aircraft pilots to follow new rest rule


Washington – A Senate bill introduced Nov. 13 would require new rest regulations for pilots – set to go into effect in January – to include cargo aircraft pilots, who previously were exempted.

The Safe Skies Act of 2013 (S. 1692), a companion bill to a House version introduced Jan. 4, would hold cargo aircraft pilots to the following updated rest regulations:

  • Maximum flight duty period will decrease to between 9 and 14 hours for single-crew operations.
  • Minimum rest period will increase to 10 hours, with a mandate that pilots must receive eight hours of uninterrupted sleep within that time period.
  • Pilots must have at least 30 consecutive off-duty hours weekly, compared with the previous 24-hour minimum.

The Senate version of the bill was introduced by Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA). At press time, it had been referred to the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, while the House version had been referred to the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee’s Aviation Subcommittee.