In February, some 40 aerospace industry associations sent a letter to the Secretary of Transportation and the Director of the Office of Management and Budget warning that “the U.S. aviation industry is facing a technician and pilot shortage that threatens to undermine the growth and competitiveness of one of the most important sectors of our economy. The problem is particularly serious with respect to skilled aircraft maintainers. Failure to maintain a robust U.S. maintenance workforce will result in reduced airline safety and the outsourcing of aviation maintenance work to foreign countries. To solve the growing aviation maintainer problem, President Trump should sign an executive order that directs the FAA to accept certain military training and experience as meeting the training and experience requirements that FAA mandates for civilian aviation maintenance technicians. The FAA must harmonize its aviation maintenance certification requirements with active duty aviation maintenance technician training to reflect the knowledge, experience and skill gained during military service. There are other steps such an executive order could include which I discuss here.
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