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Tue, Mar 08, 2022

EAA, FAA Hold Virtual Winter Summit

Issues Surrounding Sport, Experimental Aircraft, Recreational Aviation Reviewed by Industry Stakeholders

The Annual FAA Recreational Winter Summit was held online this year, with staff and officials from both entities coming together to assess the state of sport and general aviation. 

Among the topics presented were the effects of "current safety trends and enhancements to flight-training exemptions and processes to help maintain legacy aircraft," as well as the handling of special medical certificate issuances and pilot education. Some areas of particular interest for the EAA were the expansion of the Additional Pilot Program for use in qualifying homebuilt aircraft types. Their efforts in boosting the safety of initial certification, especially in new and unfamiliar aircraft has been noticed in the industry as an excellent method of increasing safety standards in homebuilds. 

Also of particular interest to the sport aviation circle is the upcoming MOSAIC initiative and unleaded aviation fuels projects. Updates and discussions on the same were given, but so far no groundbreaking announcements have been made to the general public on the matter. It seems apparent that the next big hump for the industry will likely stem from the replacement of leaded avgas throughout the country, spurred on by recent controversy around avfuels as a fulcrum to threaten closure on general aviation under the auspices of environmental consciousness. The FAA discussed their new industry initiative to accelerate the switch to a newer, cleaner option, hopefully allowing a complete switch by 2030. 
 
“It was an excellent dialogue that highlighted the importance of this annual gathering,” said Sean Elliott, EAA’s vice president of advocacy and safety. “While we always prefer an in-person gathering and aim to return to that in 2023, even in a virtual format this meeting emphasizes EAA’s philosophy of finding cooperative solutions and keeping important issues on track.” 

FMI: www.eaa.org

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