Colgan Airlines flight 3407 accident on February 12 exposed big problems with pilot fatigue, training, and work conditions at regional airlines. This Wednesday, FAA administrator, Randy Babbitt, announced an FAA plan to expedite the creation of new rules dealing with pilot rest and fatigue. The first draft should be completed by September 1st.
The FAA and NTSB urged all regional airlines to recommit to safety by reevaluating best practices from major airlines, creating new safety programs, reviewing pilot documents and more. "We know that the airline industry is committed to operate at the highest level of safety," Babbitt said. "Now is the time to push these initiatives forward". Next month, the FAA will hold at least 10 regional meetings with airlines around the country for this purpose and for discussing the new upcoming regulation.
By July 15, FAA inspectors will complete a focused review of airline procedures for identifying and tracking pilots who fail evaluations or demonstrate a repetitive need for additional training. Inspectors will conduct additional inspections to validate that the airline's training and qualification programs meet regulatory standards in accordance with FAA guidance materials. (source: FAA Press Release)