Aircraft Accidents and the FAA Re-Authorization Act Part 2

One of the pleasures I have in traveling is the discussions I have with flight attendants (FA), those I consider the least appreciated, yet most important people in air travel. These men and women border on saintly in the day-to-day accomplishments of their tasks, limited to the area of a hollow tube with a variety of characters that would challenge Mother Theresa’s patience.
I read a good article by Sarah Steegar in Flyertalk, a travel circular; she talks realistically about upcoming changes discussed in the FAA Re-Authorization Act, namely ten hour minimum layovers, ‘just like pilots’. The key word missing is ‘uninterrupted’ and just what ten hours means.
The range is from gate-to-gate ten hours, not hotel arrival to hotel departure. This is an important human factor issue, when one considers that one hour – minimum – is lost on both ends just getting out of the airport. This is followed by the trip to and from the hotel and all the check-in and eating. It’s not much, assuming your circadian rhythm is not beaten up by the time zone changes.
There are many ways for airlines to play around these hours and regional FAs may not benefit as well as mainline FAs. This is wrong because when we think of flying, automatically we think of pilots, and they do earn the right to perks that make their jobs safer. But FAs are just as important, if not, more so for their responsibility.
And ironically, the ten-hour minimum layover times may not get passed.

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