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Pilot's Bill of Rights clears Congress

The U.S. House of Representatives on Monday passed the Pilot’s Bill of Rights, which had already cleared the Senate.

Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, praised the passage in a press release from his office: "I’m happy to see the House act on this bill which has several key provisions to protect Alaska aviators. With flying such a critical part of life in Alaska, and aviation one of our key employers, it’s important to do what we can to make sure pilots are treated fairly in their dealings with the FAA."

The bill is meant to offer pilots and aviators protections in their dealings with the Federal Aviation Administration. Key provisions include:

  • Ensuring pilots are notified of any investigation of them by the FAA.
  • Giving pilots full access to data and evidence pertinent to the investigation.
  • Clearing up the burdensome ‘NOTAM’ process, which requires pilots comb through an “overwhelming” number of Notices to Airmen before flight.

But there are many more provisions to the bill, which has been praised by the piloting community.

"This is the biggest news for general aviation pilots in recent years," said Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., a flight instructor who introduced the Senate version.

The Pilot's Bill of Rights will become law when President Obama signs it.