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Wed, Mar 17, 2010

Northwest Pilots Who Overflew Airport Drop Bid To Keep Licenses

May Apply For Reinstatement In 10 Months

The Northwest Airlines pilots who had their airman certificates pulled in an emergency revocation after they overshot their destination airport by 150 miles have dropped their bid to have the licenses returned, the FAA said Monday.

The settlement reached between the FAA and the pilots means an appeal hearing which could have resulted in litigation will not be needed next month. Under the terms of the agreement, the pilots will not contest the revocation, and may apply for reinstatement of their airman priveleges in 10 months rather than 12.

CNN reports that when they reapply, they will need to re-take the tests they had originally passed to get licenses in the first place, according to FAA spokeswoman Laura Brown. They will also need simulator training to allow them to fly commercial airliners.

Captain Timothy Cheney and FO Richard Cole have been apologetic for the incident. "There is no good excuse," Cheney reportedly told the NTSB in its initial investigation. "I let my guard down. I wish I could explain why."

Cheney admitted that his actions put the 144 passengers on the plane "at risk," and said he was embarrassed by the incident.

FMI: www.faa.gov, www.ntsb.gov

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