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EAA Leads Effort to Lift Living History Flight Experiences Moratorium for Warbirds

  • EAA
    B-17 Veteran Dick Johnson flies in EAA's B-17 Aluminum Overcast during the Arsenal of Democracy flyover of Washington, D.C. Lifting of the moratorium allows additional flight experiences and operators.

July 21, 2015 - More than four years of work by EAA led way as the FAA lifted a longtime moratorium on new “Living History Flight Experiences” in historic aircraft, particularly warbirds.

Lifting of the FAA moratorium means that new applications and approvals can be finalized that allow flight experiences in such airplanes as World War II warbirds. Several operators had been continuing their flights on long-held exemptions, but lifting of the moratorium allows additional flight experiences and operators to be added for aviation enthusiasts.

EAA had been urging the FAA to remove the moratorium in place since 2011. It was initially meant as an 18-month pause to consider standardized training programs, but instead had remained as a barrier to additional flight operations. EAA continually addressed the topic in sessions with the FAA in Washington, as well as in Oshkosh during the annual EAA AirVenture fly-in and the Winter Recreational Aviation Summit.

“Lifting of the FAA moratorium after four long years is an important first step,” said Sean Elliott, EAA’s vice president of advocacy and safety. “We remain concerned on some of the language and terminology used in the document, however, and how it might be interpreted in the field to limit certain aircraft. We will remain watchful to ensure freedom and consistency for these operations that are extremely popular.”

Elliott added that EAA is ready to assist the FAA through continued leadership on this issue. That could include forming a community-agency partnership to provide feedback policy implementation and interpretation, as well as working to establish safety requirements and documentation of various training programs.

“We will continue to monitor implementation and compliance issues, because the day-to-day FAA decisions in the field are a key to determining how successful this will be,” he said.

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