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December 22, 1994
Regarding your reporting on aircraft safety ("Dangerous Delays," Dec. 11-13): I couldn't agree with you more. It's the legal cost of human life versus the cost of the safety measure. As an aircraft engineer, I researched the use of jelled fuels as a safety measure for fighter aircraft many years ago. I found extensive research showing that in a crash with ruptured fuel tanks, the jelled fuel did not atomize and ignite as does conventional jet fuel. Rather it remained in globs and, if it did ignite, burned calmly like Sterno.
January 22, 2013 | By Hugo Martín, Los Angeles Times
The investigation into battery problems on the much-heralded Boeing 787 Dreamliner expanded to the plane's Japanese battery manufacturer and the Arizona makers of other electronic components. Federal Aviation Administration officials Monday joined authorities in Japan who are looking into the manufacturing process at the Kyoto maker of the lithium-ion battery that caught fire on two recent Dreamliner flights, prompting the FAA last week to ground the plane. Federal regulators have already eliminated one potential cause of the battery problems: The National Transportation Safety Board concluded over the weekend that a battery that caught fire on a Dreamliner in Boston was not overcharged.
July 11, 2012 | By Hugo Martin
This post has been updated. The Federal Aviation Administration is proposing two fines totaling $987,500 against Delta Air Lines for allegedly operating two commercial planes in need of repairs. “Safety is our highest priority,” FAA Acting Administrator Michael Huerta said in a statement.  “Operators must follow the proper procedures to maintain their aircraft.” Delta, based in Atlanta, has 30 days to respond to the proposed fine. In one case, the FAA contends Delta operated a Boeing 737-800 on 20 flights after an FAA inspector discovered a chip on the plane's nose cone.
January 31, 2012 | By W.J. Hennigan, Los Angeles Times
New rules for operating small drones in U.S. airspace have been delayed by the Federal Aviation Administration, which has been weighing for years how to regulate these unmanned aircraft over populated areas. Currently, drones are not allowed to fly in the U.S. except with special permission from the FAA. But as demand increases for using drones in the commercial world, the agency plans to propose new regulations on small remotely piloted aircraft, a move seen as the first step toward opening the nation's skyways to drone aircraft.
May 31, 2013 | By Dan Weikel
A new federal report recommends taking a voluntary approach rather than government regulation to reduce the noise and safety risks of low-flying helicopters over neighborhoods across the Los Angeles Basin. The study by the Federal Aviation Administration stems from requests by members of California's Congressional delegation to address concerns about chopper flights over homes, businesses and landmarks, such as the Hollywood Bowl during performances. The report immediately drew fire from Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank)
April 5, 2013 | By Laura J. Nelson
The 149 air-traffic control towers scheduled to be shut down Sunday due to federal budget cuts will be kept open for two more months, the Federal Aviation Administration announced Friday. The extension, through June 15, gives officials two months to deal with lawsuits regarding the closure, according to a statement issued by the agency. The FAA will also review "appropriate risk mitigations" and consult with airports and operators. The FAA had announced in March that they would close as many as 238 towers as part of mandatory federal budget cuts.
November 26, 2013 | By W.J. Hennigan
The Federal Aviation Administration plans to issue a warning to airlines flying certain Boeing Co. 787 Dreamliners and 747-8 jumbo jets, advising that they avoid high-altitude thunderstorms after instances of icing. The anticipated move comes after Boeing notified airlines last week that the planes, outfitted with the GEnx engine made by General Electric Co., could have icing problems if they flew close to the storms. The warning is an “interim action to make sure pilots avoid icing conditions that could affect engine power and possibly damage the engine,” the FAA said.
February 22, 2013 | By Dominic Gates
The Federal Aviation Administration said Friday that it received a formal proposal from Boeing Co. to fix the 787 Dreamliner's battery problems and "will analyze it closely. " But the agency indicated that it won't rush to get the Dreamliners back in the air despite the problems that the grounding of the planes have brought to Boeing and its customers. "The safety of the flying public is our top priority, and we won't allow the 787 to return to commercial service until we're confident that any proposed solution has addressed the battery failure risks," an FAA statement said.
July 10, 2013 | By Laura J. Nelson
Under a final rule to be put in effect next week by the Federal Aviation Administration, co-pilots who fly for U.S. passenger and cargo planes will face a more stringent certification process and a more extended training sequence. Co-pilots, formally known as first officers, will be required to complete 1,500 hours of flight time. Previously, the requirement was 250 hours. First officers will also be required to earn an aircraft type rating, which involves additional testing and training specific to each plane they fly. "We owe it to the traveling public to have only the most qualified and best trained pilots," said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx in a prepared statement.
June 27, 2013 | By Terry Gardner
If you're eagerly awaiting the report on using electronic devices in flight, you'll need to wait a bit longer: The report, expected next month, now will not land until September. The Federal Aviation Administration report, assembled by representatives from government agencies, airline manufacturers, airlines and safety organizations, studies whether those devices pose a risk. The two-month extension is needed “to complete the additional work necessary for the safety assessment,”  Kristie Greco, an FAA spokesperson, said in an email.
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