Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content
Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-08-019
Details
Synopsis: On February 18, 2007, about 1506 eastern standard time, Delta Connection flight 6448, an Embraer ERJ-170, N862RW, operated by Shuttle America, Inc., was landing on runway 28 at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE), Cleveland, Ohio, during snow conditions when it overran the end of the runway, contacted an instrument landing system (ILS) antenna, and struck an airport perimeter fence. The airplane’s nose gear collapsed during the overrun. Of the 2 flight crewmembers, 2 flight attendants, and 71 passengers on board, 3 passengers received minor injuries. The airplane received substantial damage from the impact forces. The flight was operating under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 121 from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Atlanta, Georgia. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident.
Recommendation: TO THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION: In cooperation with pilot unions, the Regional Airline Association, and the Air Transport Association, develop a specific, standardized policy for 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 121, 135, and Part 91 subpart K operators that would allow flight crewmembers to decline assignments or remove themselves from duty if they were impaired by a lack of sleep.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Alternate Action
Mode: Aviation
Location: Cleveland, OH, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA07MA072
Accident Reports: Runway Overrun During Landing Shuttle America, Inc. Doing Business as Delta Connection Flight 6448 Embraer ERJ-170, N862RW
Report #: AAR-08-01
Accident Date: 2/18/2007
Issue Date: 4/15/2008
Date Closed: 12/27/2013
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FAA (Closed - Acceptable Alternate Action)
Keyword(s): Fatigue,

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 12/27/2013
Response: Among the many significant improvements in the final rule issued January 4, 2012, were provisions completing the actions specified in Safety Recommendations A-08-19 and -20, but these provisions applied only to Part 121 operators. Although the preamble to the final rule indicated that the FAA was considering similar rulemaking for Part 135 operators, we note that the agency has now decided not to pursue such rulemaking for either Part 135 or Part 91, Subpart K, operators. The FAA has issued letters of interpretation of current regulations for Part 135 operators stating that both a flightcrew member and the certificate holder are in violation of the regulations if a crewmember flies when his or her lack of rest would endanger others. These regulations also apply to Part 91, Subpart K operations. As a result, the FAA believes that these interpretations of existing regulations constitute an alternative approach for addressing the recommendations. Although we agree for the present with that position, we will evaluate whether this alternative has proven effective when we investigate future accidents involving either Part 135 or Part 91, Subpart K, flights in which flightcrew fatigue is an issue. If we find that the alternative has not proven effective, we will issue new recommendations addressing these issues for Part 135 and Part 91, Subpart K, operators at that time. Accordingly, Safety Recommendations A-08-19 and -20 are classified CLOSED--ACCEPTABLE ALTERNATE ACTION.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 9/6/2013
Response: -From Michael P. Huerta, Administrator: General Comment. In recommendations A-95-15, A-08-19 and -20, and A-10-16, part 135 operators were included in the 1995 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), Flightcrew Member Duty Period Limitations, Flight Time Limitations and Rest Requirements. This NPRM was withdrawn because of the many significant issues raised during the comment period. On January 4, 2012, the FAA issued The Flightcrew Member Duty and Rest Requirements Final Rule. The rule amends the FAA's existing flight, duty, and rest regulations applicable to certificate holders and their flightcrew members operating under part 121 domestic, flag, and supplemental rules. While the preamble to the 2012 final rule mentions that part 135 operators should anticipate a rule similar to the rule tor part 121 operators, the FAA has no immediate plans to initiate this rulemaking. The FAA has addressed the general issue of fatigue and part 135 operators in letters of interpretation. One example is the September 27, 2010, letter to Mr. Tom Rogers (enclosed), from the Assistant Chief Counsel for Regulations. In this letter the FAA stated that, per § 91.13(a), "[n]o person may operate an aircraft in a careless or reckless manner, so as to endanger the life or property of another. Both the flightcrew member and certificate holder would be in a violation of the regulations if a crewmember flies when his lack of rest would endanger others." The regulatory provisions of§ 91.13(a) apply to part 135 operations. The FAA finds that the existing letter of interpretation provides clear guidance for part 13 5 operators. In 2003, when the final rules goveming the operation of fractional aircraft ownership programs (part 91 subpart K) were drafted, the FAA considered the existing issues and research surrounding flight, duty, and rest time requirements. Additionally, comments were solicited from on-demand charter operators, fractional ownership program managers, aircraft manufacturers, corporate flight departments, traditional aircraft management companies, aircraft financing and insurance companies, as well as industry trade associations. These comments were received and incorporated into the final rules for part 91 subpart K. With the rule, the FAA established a regulatory safety standard within part 91 subpart K to meet a high level of safety. Section 91.1 057(h) states that "a flightcrew member may decline a flight assignment if, in the flightcrew member's determination, to do so would not be consistent with the standard of safe operation required under this subpart, this part, and applicable provisions of this title." Additionally, program managers and their flightcrew members are subject to the regulatory provisions of§ 91.13(a). Both the program manager and flightcrew member would violate regulations if it is determined that a crewmember operated an aircraft when the crewmembers' lack of rest endangered others. Individual program managers are responsible for developing policies that allow flightcrew members to decline assignments or remove themselves from duty if they were impaired by a lack of sleep and include the administrative implications of fatigue calls. FAA principal operations inspectors work closely with program managers to ensure program operating manuals support regulatory compliance. The FAA exercises oversight responsibility to ensure fractional ownership programs comply with the regulations and maintain a high level of safety. The FAA finds that § 91.13( a) and 91.105 7 provide sufficient regulatory structure to meet the intent of recommendations A-95-125, A-08-19 and -20, and A-10-16, without requiring additional rulemaking for 91 subpart K operators. -From Michael P. Huerta, Administrator: The Flightcrew Member Duty and Rest Requirements Final Rule enables flightcrew members to report themselves as fatigued and prohibits part 121 certificate holders conducting passenger operations from allowing flightcrew members to continue their flight duty period after the report. This provision is outlined in 14 CFR § 117.5, Fitness for duty. Additionally, the rule defines "fit for duty" in§ 117.3 as," ... physiologically and mentally prepared and capable of performing assigned duties at the highest degree of safety." If a flightcrew member is fatigued they are not "fit for duty" under part 117 and thus should not accept or be assigned any flight duty assignments. The FAA published draft Advisory Circular (AC) 120-FIT, Fitness for Duty, for public comment on November 15, 2010, and is working on finalizing the AC. The AC provides concepts for developing appropriate processes and procedures to comply with§ 117.5 and instituting appropriate operator-specific fatigue countermeasures. The FAA also published draft AC 120-1 03, Fatigue Risk Management Systems for Aviation Safety, for comment at the same time. This AC presents guidelines for developing and implementing a fatigue training module for flightcrew members and personnel involved in scheduling and managing flightcrew members. In the Board's comments to the Flightcrew Member Duty and Rest Requirements NPRM dated November 15, 2010, the Board stated that the proposed rule would likely meet the intent of the part 121 portion of Safety Recommendations A-08-19 and -20. I believe the FAA has effectively addressed Safety Recommendations A-95-125, A-08-19 and -20, and A-10-16, and consider our actions complete.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 3/14/2011
Response: On September 14, 2010, the FAA published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) titled “14 CFR Parts 117 and 121: Flightcrew Member Duty and Rest Requirements.” On November 15, 2010, the NTSB submitted comments to the docket for this NPRM, stating that the NPRM proposes requirements that would enable a flight crewmember to self-report as too fatigued to continue working an assigned flight duty period and prohibit the certificate holder from allowing the flight crewmember to continue. The NTSB supports this element of the proposed rule, which, if adopted, would likely satisfy the intent of Safety Recommendations A-08-19 and A-08-20 for Part 121 operations. We also pointed that the FAA needed to adopt similar requirements for Part 135 and Part 91 subpart K operators. In its current letter, the FAA indicated that it is currently reviewing comments submitted in response to the NPRM and that the Part 135 community should expect an NPRM and final rule that are very similar, if not identical, to those proposed for Part 121 operators. In addition, the FAA is evaluating whether to extend these regulations to Part 91 subpart K operations. Pending issuance of a final rule for Part 121 operators containing the relevant portions proposed in the NPRM and the development and issuance of similar requirements for Part 135 and Part 91 subpart K operators, Safety Recommendations A-08-19 and -20 remain classified OPEN – ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 1/20/2011
Response: CC# 201100033: - From J. Randolph Babbitt, Administrator: The Federal Aviation Administration continues to follow its strategic approach to address fatigue, as outlined in our September 26, 2008 letter to the Board. On June 24, 2009, we chartered the Flight and Duty Time Limitations and Rest Requirements Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC). The goal of the ARC was to study and submit proposals for new flight time limitations, duty period limits, and rest requirements for pilots in operations under parts 121 and 135. On September 10, 2009, the ARC submitted its final report with recommendations to the FAA Administrator. Acting on the ARC's recommendations, the FAA published the Flightcrew Member Duty and Rest Requirements Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) (enclosure 1) on September 14,2010. We are proposing to amend our existing flight, duty, and rest regulations applicable to part 121 certificate holders and their flightcrew members in this NPRM. The part 121 final rule will be issued once the FAA reviews and takes appropriate action on all relevant comments. The part 135 community should expect to see an NPRM and final rule very similar to, if not exactly like, those of part 121. Additionally, we are evaluating the appropriateness of extending this regulatory framework to part 91K operations. To supplement these ru1emaking efforts, the FAA issued one safety alert for operators (SAFO) and two information for operators (InFO) pertaining to fatigue: • SAFO 09014, Concepts for Fatigue Countermeasures in Part 121 and 135 Short-Haul Operations, was issued on September 11,2009 (enclosure 2); • InFO 10013, Fatigue Risk Management Plans (FRMP) for Part 121 Air Carriers - Part One, was issued on August 12, 2010 (enclosure 3); and • InFO 10017, Fatigue Risk Management Plans (FRMP) for Part 121 Air Carriers - Part Two, was issued on August 19, 2010 (enclosure 4). Also, the FAA issued three fatigue related draft advisory circulars (AC) that closed for public comment on November 15, 2010, and will be provided to the Board once they are finalized: • AC 121-31A, Flightcrew Rest Facilities; • AC 120-FT, Fatigue Training; and • AC l20-FIT, Fitness for Duty. I will keep the Board informed of the progress on these safety recommendations, and I will provide an update by January 31, 2012.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 11/15/2010
Response: Notation 8257: The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has reviewed the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) titled "14 CFR Parts 117 and 121: Flightcrew Member Duty and Rest Requirements," which was published at 75 Federal Register 55852 on September 14, 2010. The notice proposes to amend 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 121 and establish 14 CFR Part 117 to create a single set of flight time limitations, duty period limits, and rest requirements for pilots in Part 121 operations. According to the NPRM, the rulemaking recognizes the similarities between the types of operations conducted under Part 121 and the universality of factors that lead to human fatigue. In addition, the rulemaking acknowledges the need to consider fatigue-inducing factors such as time of day, length of duty day, workload, whether an individual is acclimated to a new time zone, and the likelihood of being able to sleep under different circumstances. The rulemaking aims to ensure that pilots have an opportunity to obtain sufficient rest to perform their duties, with an objective of improving aviation safety. The NPRM acknowledges that the FAA is proposing to limit this rulemaking to Part 121 certificate holders and flight crew members who work for them and address fatigue on an incremental basis. Further, the NPRM explicitly identifies two specific NTSB recommendations regarding pilot fatigue in its background statement, Safety Recommendations A-06-10 and A-95-113. The NTSB strongly supports most aspects of the proposed rule while also acknowledging a variety of important issues that remain to be addressed. Since 1990, the safety issue of reducing accidents caused by human fatigue has been on the NTSB's Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements. Over the last 20 years, the NTSB has investigated many air carrier accidents involving fatigued flight crews, including the American International Airways flight 808 accident in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; the American Airlines flight 1420 accident in Little Rock, Arkansas; the Corporate Airlines flight 5966 accident in Kirksville, Missouri; and, most recently, the Colgan Air flight 3407 accident in Buffalo, New York. NTSB recommendations issued over the same period of time in an effort to counteract the threat of human fatigue to passenger and crew safety promote, among other measures, scientifically based hours of service, eliminating tail-end Part 91 (for example, training or ferry) flights, developing guidance on fatigue risk management systems (FRMS), and addressing the challenges of obtaining adequate rest when associated with pilot commuting. The proposed revisions to Part 121 and creation of Part 117 address many of these areas. As noted in the NPRM, the FAA drew from available data on sleep and fatigue science to provide a foundation for the proposed rule. In addition, the FAA reviewed international standards and drew from the experienced guidance of industry, including representatives from operators and labor who comprised the aviation rulemaking committee (ARC), as well as scientific advisors for this NPRM. The NTSB commends the FAA for its efforts to develop this critically important rule using a broadly inclusive, scientifically based approach. We expect that these efforts will yield the expedited adoption of a final rule that meets the needs of both the individual pilot and the industry in effectively mitigating fatigue hazards to improve safety. Implementation of the proposed revisions will represent a significant improvement in the regulations to prevent flight crew fatigue in Part 121 operations. The NTSB's specific comments on several areas of the NPRM follow. Consideration of Factors Affecting Alertness and Consolidation of Part 121 The NPRM takes into consideration length of duty day, starting time, workload, and time-zone changes. These factors have been shown by sleep and fatigue research to affect alertness, both alone and in combination with other factors. As a result, the proposal is a significant improvement over current regulations, which do not address the criticality of these factors as they relate to the development of fatigue. If adopted, the proposed rule would likely meet the intent of Safety Recommendation A-06-l0, which is currently on the NTSB's Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements. The rule does not specifically address NTSB Safety Recommendation A-09-64, which calls for the need to address unique issues affecting the development of fatigue in short-haul operations through specific research into this area.2 Based on the ARC input, the proposed rule does shorten flight duty periods and maximum flight time based on the number of flight segments that exceed four in I day, which should help to mitigate fatigue in these operations. However, as acknowledged in the NPRM, there is little data directly addressing short-haul operations, and, as recommended in Safety Recommendation A-09-64, research into factors affecting the development of fatigue in these operations (especially in the context of the proposed rule) would be beneficial. By removing the former distinctions under Part 121 between domestic, flag carriers, supplemental, and operations conducted under Part 91 (including tail-end ferry flights), the NPRM acknowledges that the human fatigue factors are the same across these operations and science cannot support the notion of allowing longer duty hours for certain subgroups. Additionally, the proposed rule addresses the NTSB's longstanding concern of eliminating tail-end ferry flights in Part 121 operations. Adoption of this element of the proposed rule would likely meet the intent of Safety Recommendation A-95-113, which is currently on the NTSB's Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements. Maximum Flight Time and Rest Period Expansion The NPRM proposes to increase the maximum flight time from 8 to 10 hours and acknowledges that research in this area does not provide a definitive conclusion about the effect this would have on fatigue.3 The NTSB considers it important that the 10-hour flight times are only allowed for flight duty period start times between 0700-1259, which should ensure that flight crews do not accumulate this extended flight time during the circadian low. In addition, the reduction of the flight duty period as the number of flight segments exceeds four should help to mitigate risk associated with the increased workload that this part of the NPRM proposes. However, the NTSB urges the FAA to proceed cautiously on the expansion of flight time to 10 hours and collect data on this proposed change so that any adverse consequences are identified and mitigated. In addition, the NTSB suggests that the FAA look to other modal administrations in the Department of Transportation to help assess the effect of this change on safety. The NTSB is encouraged that, as defined in the proposed rule, a rest period begins once the flight crew arrives at the actual location of the rest facility (such as a hotel). This should help to ensure that crewmembers can allocate additional time to actual sleep during the defined rest period. Although the NPRM did not clearly define when the rest period would end, the FAA provided clarifying guidance to the rulemaking docket stating that the "rest opportunity commences when the flightcrew member reaches the hotel or suitable accommodation and ends when he or she checks out. The NPRM also states that the required rest period would be extended to 9 hours, and the clarifying guidance states that the 9-hour rest opportunity should allow for an actual 8-hour sleep opportunity. However, the associated draft advisory circular (AC) on fitness for duty states that, "it is unrealistic to assume that a 9-hour rest period will yield 9 or even 8 hours of sleep when you take into consideration time lost in checking in at a hotel, eating, and preparing to resume duty at the conclusion of the sleep opportunity." The NTSB concurs with this observation6 and notes that the final rule should be consistent with the guidance contained in the draft AC. Therefore, the NTSB strongly encourages an increase in the duration of the required rest period to accommodate an opportunity for 8 hours of sleep. Joint Responsibility for Fatigue Mitigation and Fatigue Education The NPRM states clearly that effective fatigue mitigation in aviation requires individual responsibility at the pilot level and corporate responsibility at the air carrier level. The NTSB agrees and, based on findings from accident investigations and the reality of the aviation system, recognizes that effective actions and coordination among pilots, airlines, and regulators must occur to effectively address fatigue issues. Furthermore, the NPRM would enable a flight crewmember to self-report as too fatigued to continue working an assigned flight duty period and prohibit the certificate holder from allowing the flight crewmember to continue. The NTSB supports this element of the proposed rule, which, if adopted, would likely satisfy the intent of Safety Recommendations A-08-19 and A-08-20 for Part 121 operations. The NPRM addresses commuting as a fitness for duty issue, and the associated guidance material contains information about responsible commuting. Although the NTSB agrees in part with this perspective and believes that education and training can help, it also is steadfast in its belief that the concept of joint responsibility applies equally to commuting. If implemented, the NPRM's treatment of commuting-related fatigue risks would not meet the intent of Safety Recommendation A-10-16, because this recommendation advocates going beyond guidance to helping an individual commuting pilot obtain adequate rest; Safety Recommendation A-10-16 also addresses the need for operators to identify pilots who commute, use scheduling practices to minimize fatigue in commuting pilots, and develop or identify rest facilities for commuting pilots. While the NTSB acknowledges the difficulty in identifying a regulatory solution for commuting hazards at the individual level, steps can be taken at the company level without undue regulatory burden and that would be consistent with the level of company action called for in other areas of the NPRM. The NTSB strongly encourages the FAA to ensure that the final rule's treatment of commuting incorporates company level responsibilities reflected in Safety Recommendation A-10-16, including the identification of pilots with challenging commutes and provision of mitigating measures. The NPRM also proposes requiring a fatigue education and training program for all flight crewmembers, employees involved in the operational control and scheduling of flight crewmembers, and personnel having management oversight of these areas. The NTSB strongly supports this concept and believes it to be consistent with earlier NTSB recommendations advocating the need for fatigue education among flight crewmembers.9 In addition, this concept is among the foundational elements of an effective FRMS. The NTSB notes that the required course content addresses a broad range of fatigue causation factors, countermeasures, and mitigation strategies and is encouraged that the draft AC on fatigue training supporting this NPRM contains a discussion about medically based sleep disorders, such as obstructive sleep apnea, that can affect a crewmember's ability to receive adequate sleep. However, the NPRM does not sufficiently address identifying and treating medically based sleep disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea, and the NTSB encourages the FAA to consider Safety Recommendations A-09-61 through -63 in the guidance associated with this NPRM. Additionally, the NTSB believes that training conducted under this proposed rule should also consider personal strategies that have been scientifically demonstrated to be effective for maintaining alertness and performance on the flight deck (for example, strategic napping) and that the draft AC supporting this training should also be modified to address specific methods that crews can use to maintain alertness on the flight deck. Fatigue Risk Management Systems and Data Collection The NTSB is encouraged by the proposed rule's recognition of FRMS as a way for both operators and the FAA to make informed decisions about operator-specific exemptions to the rule to address unique operational challenges. NTSB safety recommendations on FRMS, which are on the NTSB's Most Wanted List of Transportation Safety Improvements, have asked for the development of FRMS guidance for operators, as well as a methodology for the FAA to evaluate the effectiveness of these systems. The NPRM references the development of AC 120-103, "Fatigue Risk Management Systems for Aviation Safety," which is intended to help operators develop and implement FRMS and is largely consistent with the intent of Safety Recommendation A-08-44. However, because the NPRM states that operators would only be required to implement an FRMS when they are seeking exemptions to the rules, the NTSB is concerned that the FAA's proposed implementation of FRMS is too narrow. Operators not seeking exemptions could benefit from the synergistic advantages of fatigue risk mitigation provided by an FRMS closely coupled with effective flight and duty time regulations, and, as noted in AC 120-103, there may also be economic benefits to implementing these systems. As recommended in Safety Recommendation A-08-45, the FAA should continue to pursue the development and use of a methodology to continually assess the effectiveness of FRMS. Independent of the concept of FRMS, the proposed rule requires operators to provide regular submissions of schedule data and maintain data on fitness-for-duty reporting. The NTSB notes that collection and analysis of these data will be critical to ensuring that the proposed rule has the intended effect and will allow both the industry and the FAA to identify the need for adjustments. Moreover, the continual assessment of system operation in this manner is an integral component of current data-driven feedback approaches to safety management, such as safety management systems (SMS) and FRMS. If the proposed rule becomes final, both the industry and the FAA must commit to more than rote data collection and ensure that these data are thoroughly evaluated to ensure that any unforeseen fatigue hazards are identified, understood, and corrected. Summary Observations The NTSB's review of the NPRM suggests that, if adopted, the proposed rule will provide substantial benefits towards reducing the hazards associated with flight crew fatigue in Part 121 operations. As noted previously, the FAA chose to limit the scope of the NPRM, and therefore it does not specifically address Part 135 and Part 91 subpart K (fractional ownership) operations, which the NTSB has cited in related safety recommendations, or other safety critical personnel involved in air carrier operations. However, the NPRM does state that a proposal to address Part 135 operations may be forthcoming after the final rule for Part 121 is adopted. Although these areas are outside the scope of the current NPRM, the methodology the FAA used to develop the current NPRM should serve as a strong foundation for swiftly initiating regulatory efforts to address these other areas of concern, including NTSB recommendations pertaining to other safety critical personnel. The NTSB believes that time is of the essence to finalize the rule for Part 121 operations based on this NPRM. The record of accidents clearly shows that fatigue has caused, contributed to, or been identified as a safety issue in multiple accidents involving Part 121 operators. Many of these accidents have occurred since the FAA's last attempt in 1995 to enact rulemaking that would have addressed flight time and duty time issues-an effort that was eventually terminated with no change to the regulations. We are hopeful that, with stakeholder support, the legacy of the current inclusive and scientifically based rulemaking effort will be far more positive and sustained, as the traveling public, crewmembers, and air carriers must not continue to endure the significant human loss of life and financial costs resulting from continued accidents involving fatigue. The NTSB appreciates the opportunity to comment on this NPRM.

From: NTSB
To: FAA
Date: 6/22/2009
Response: The FAA hosted its first aviation fatigue management symposium June 1719, 2008. The symposium addressed fatigue issues in the aviation industry, including air carrier fatigue policies and flight crews’ having the right to decline flying assignments on the basis of fatigue. In its September 26, 2008, letter, the FAA described the phased, strategic, multi-year action plan that it is pursuing to address aviation fatigue. One of the activities described is the development and distribution of an AC that will address, in general terms, policy guidance on fatigue mitigation, including crewmember scheduling and duty policies. The FAA stated that its strategic approach to aviation fatigue will include the consideration of operator policies related to crewmembers declining flight and/or duty assignments due to fatigue and will lead to appropriate formal policy guidance. The activities described by the FAA in its September 26, 2008, letter are responsive to these recommendations. The NTSB cautions that a satisfactory response to Safety Recommendation A-08-20 will include a requirement for operators to implement an appropriate policy concerning declining assignments based on fatigue. Development of guidance by itself will not be sufficient for a full response. Pending the FAA’s completing the recommended actions, Safety Recommendations A-08-19 and -20 are classified OPEN -- ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: FAA
To: NTSB
Date: 9/26/2008
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 10/8/2008 4:09:46 PM MC# 2080610: - From Robert A. Sturgell, Acting Administrator: The FAA hosted its first Aviation Fatigue Management Symposium, which ran from June 17 through 19, 2008. The symposium addressed fatigue issues affecting flight and cabin crews, air traffic controllers, technicians, mechanics, dispatchers, and ramp workers. The symposium objectives were to present the most comprehensive expert scientific fatigue information to a broad audience of international aviation industry leaders, human factors scientists and managers, unions, associations, federations, regulators from the United States, the International Civil Aviation Organization and numerous other international representatives, and U.S. Government agencies. The issues of air carrier fatigue policies, to include crew declination of flying assignments on the basis of fatigue, were addressed in scientific panel presentations and discussion group deliberations and reports. The FAA is actively pursuing a phased, strategic, multi-year action plan that will address aviation fatigue. This plan includes: 1.Compilation and publishing Symposium Proceedings that will contain all information presented at the symposium, discussion group summaries, keynote addresses from the FAA Acting Administrator and Member Sumwalt, and other relevant information. The proceedings will be published and available to the international aviation community; 2.Development and distribution of an AC that will reference symposium proceedings information and provide summary information on fatigue drivers, barriers, and mitigation methods. This AC will address, in general terms, policy guidance in major areas of fatigue mitigation, to include crew member scheduling and duty policies; 3.Development of a fatigue risk management system AC that, within a safety management system context, will comprehensively address all elements ( e.g. corporate policies, decision-making, individual responsibility, education, application of fatigue science information and modeling, etc.) of a systematic approach to mitigating aviation fatigue; 4.Publishing operations specification guidance for fatigue management in ultra long range flight operations, which are not specifically addressed in current, formal guidance. Fatigue mitigation methods that are developed in this effort will yield applications for subsequent efforts in all flight operations categories; and 5.All of the above activities will be supported by the direct involvement of widely acknowledged fatigue science expertise during objective data collection and analysis and policy development. Throughout this strategic process, the FAA will invite appropriate industry, union, science, regulatory, and government participation to collaborate on all important aspects of a comprehensive aviation fatigue mitigation policy. The strategic approach outlined above will include the consideration of operator policies related to crewmembers declining flight and/or duty assignments due to fatigue and will lead to appropriate formal policy guidance.