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Biweekly FAA Safety Briefing News Update

Biweekly FAA Safety Briefing News Update

Rulemaking Adjusts Training Device Credit for Pilot Certification

On Wednesday, December 3, 2014, the FAA issued a direct to final rule that relieves burdens on pilots seeking to obtain aeronautical experience, training, and certification by increasing the allowed use of aviation training devices (ATDs) for instrument training. The rule will increase the allowances under 14 CFR section 61.65(i) to 20 hours for credit in an ATD and allows flight schools operating under part 141 Appendix C to have a 40 percent training credit in an ATD for the instrument rating. Previous allowances for ATD use were capped at 10 hours under part 61 and 10 percent under 141. Due to the sophistication and visual configuration capabilities of ATDs, the rule also removes the requirement to use a view-limiting device.
The comment period for the direct final rule will close Friday, January 2, 2015. The rule will become effective Tuesday, January 20, 2015, if no adverse comments are received.
In concert with this rule change is an update to Advisory Circular 61–136A, FAA Approval of Aviation Training Devices and Their Use for Training and Experience, which has been revised to improve guidance for the application and approval of these training devices. The AC also provides additional guidance on ATD use for training and how to properly log the time.

New NOTAM Search Features Now Available

To help pilots streamline their search for Notices to Airmen (NOTAMs) during flight planning, the FAA rolled out some new search features now available at Among the new features is a “search by flight path” capability that allows pilots to see NOTAMS that apply only to the route they custom select using airports, navigational aids, named fixes, and/or route/airway designators to define a flight path. That flight path width can also be adjusted from one to 125 nautical miles on each side and NOTAMs for up to five alternate airports can also be included. The “search by free text” feature allows you to search for NOTAMs based on a keyword, airport designator, NOTAM number or scenario. Search results can also be custom sorted by location, number, class, start and end dates, and condition. Users can also export search results to a Microsoft Excel or Adobe PDF document. Additional enhancements to search capability are expected in the near future.