FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT
Eric R. Byer
Vice President, Government & Industry Affairs
COYNE ADDRESSES HUDSON RIVER CORRIDOR CONCERNS AT CONGRESSIONAL HEARINGS
Alexandria, VA, September 16, 2009 -- National Air Transportation Association (NATA) President James K. Coyne testified before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety and Security on Tuesday and the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Aviation today on the Hudson River midair collision that took place on August 8. The hearings were in response to recent recommendations made by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to alter the Class B airspace in the New York/New Jersey area.
At the Senate hearing, titled “Aviation Safety: The Hudson River Midair Collision and the Safety of Air Operations in Congested Airspace,” Coyne discussed the contributions NATA has made to improving general aviation safety at Teterboro Airport while also highlighting the need to accelerate the modernization of our nation’s air traffic control system. Coyne noted that the Teterboro Airport Flight Crew Briefing produced by NATA in 2008 continues to train pilots and other crew members flying into and out of Teterboro Airport, enhancing safety on the ground at one of the busiest general aviation airports in the world.
“Since its implementation in June 2008, the Teterboro Airport Flight Crew Briefing Web site has had more than 220,000 visitors and, more importantly, there have been no runway incursions at Teterboro Airport in 2009,” Coyne stated. “As a result of the success of the Teterboro Airport Flight Crew Briefing, NATA is developing a similar tool for Newark Liberty International Airport that will be available by the end of the year.”
Today, testifying before the House Subcommittee on Aviation, Coyne also took the opportunity to detail the essential need for accelerating modernization within our national air transportation system. Coyne called on Congress to separate certain aspects of the Next Generation Air Traffic Control System including upgrading radios and other communication mechanisms in Air Traffic Control towers as well as allowing general aviation operators access to real-time air traffic activity.
Coyne praised the NSTB and the FAA for developing a task force and expeditiously releasing several recommendations to improve the safety of the Class B airspace near the Hudson River.
“One of the most significant changes is the division of airspace into altitude corridors that separate aircraft flying over the river from those operating to and from local helicopter bases, which NATA supports,” Coyne stated. “While the FAA claims that VFR is the best approach for such airspace as the Hudson River Corridor, every general aviation operator should have the ability to purchase and receive radar positioning via satellite. 21st century technology that is available in the U.S. should be made readily available for general aviation aircraft.
To view NATA’s Senate testimony, please click here.
To view NATA’s House testimony, please click here.
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NATA, the voice of aviation business, is the public policy group representing the interests of aviation businesses before Congress and the federal agencies.
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