Huerta calls for improvements in general aviation safety

Washington – The general aviation industry “cannot become complacent about safety,” Michael Huerta, administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, said May 14 during a meeting with leaders in the industry.

Huerta called for installation of lifesaving equipment in older aircraft, including two-axis autopilots and angle-of-attack indicators, which help pilots maintain proper altitudes and speeds based on conditions.

Among other safety recommendations, Huerta encouraged improved pilot certification and training and increased use of aviation safety data.

His statements accompanied a new FAA fact sheet that shows the rate of fatal general aviation crashes remained “relatively static” in fiscal year 2012 compared to the previous two years. Loss-of-control crashes, such as when an aircraft stalls, account for 40 percent of general aviation fatal crashes, the fact sheet states.

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