Scotts Bluff County has joined Gering in requesting the Federal Aviation Administration change its regulation that increases the number of flying hours pilots must have for commercial flights.
In 2013, the FAA increased the number of flight hours are required to fly larger aircraft from approximately 200 to 1,500. That has caused a shortage of pilots for smaller airlines.
“Pilots will usually come out of flight school with about 250 to 500 hours of flight time and they can go to work for a smaller airline,” said Darwin Skelton, Manager of the Western Nebraska Regional Airport. “With the increase to 1,500 hours, new commercial pilots can’t fly anymore.”
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