A joint government/industry committee is set to tackle Part 135 pilot rest and duty requirements once again. At the behest of Congress, the FAA formally established the charter for a Part 135 Pilot Rest and Duty Rules Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) that will review current regulations and make recommendations on any necessary changes.
In the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, Congress directed the FAA to establish a Part 135 rest and duty ARC that includes representatives of industry, labor (both from Part 135 and 91K), and safety experts. Congress further stipulated that the ARC is to review prior efforts to develop new rest and duty rules, accommodations that might be necessary for small business, scientific and safety data, and the need to accommodate the diversity of operation, among other aspects surrounding flight and duty.
The charter for the new ARC calls for a committee comprising 20 members to be “balanced in viewpoints, interest, and knowledge,” and stipulates that members should review current rules; review other commercial rest and duty rules, including for Part 121 and ICAO standards, identify deficiencies within the current regulations; consider aspects directed by Congress; and develop consensus recommendations. While the ARC’s charter will last 24 months, the recommendations will be due within 16 months of the first meeting. Meetings will be closed to the public.
The ARC resurrects the decades-long effort to update Part 135 pilot rest and duty rules, including proposals in the 1990s that would have applied a commercial airline approach to Part 135 to the subsequent efforts of the Part 135 ARC in the early 2000s that developed much more tailored recommendations for on-demand and fractional operators.
Those attempts, however, faltered as Part 135 pilot rest and duty requirements were a lower priority for an agency focused on a number of other congressional mandates.
It would seem they listened to some of his whining, maybe he can get on the committee.