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I recently learned on the AOPA forums that there are currently two federal bills, HR 3708 and its senate equivalent, to get rid of third class FAA medical certificates. Under the new bills a person like me who flies little airplanes would be qualified to fly as long as I have a drivers license.


Because people, I'm still waiting on a resolution for my deferment!

In case you missed that entry, the story is that I've had one migraine in the last three years, so my FAA medical got deferred because I was unable to prove that I'm working with a physician who monitors my migraines and can attest that the condition is stable.

But I don't have enough migraines to justify seeing a physician about them. It's like I'm being punished for being healthy.

My medical examiner is confident that we'll be able to argue our way out of this, but it doesn't matter... I need the FAA to send me paperwork, look at my case, etc etc etc... basically use resources. Yes. Little pilots everywhere have to pay more avgas fuel taxes for the already overloaded FAA to say that my biannual-if-that migraine should not throw me off the pilot list.

Look, if you're safe to drive a car, that says a lot. An incapacitated driver can actually do a hell of a lot more damage in a short amount of time than an incapacitated pilot... we drive at 80 miles per hour five feet from other cars! Pilots also receive a lot of training about how to evaluate our own health, because we are constantly responsible for making sure we're okay, we do not fly sick or tired or on medications on the bad list. We make these decisions without doctors. Yet every 3-5 years, we have to see a doctor, who looks at this checklist that we fill out ourselves and says "yup". Or, in my case, something else. It's a waste of time.

That is why I would like to be declared medically capable of flying based on my drivers license. I worked hard on this pilot's license, love being a part of general aviation, and am really depressed about being on the ground in this lovely weather.



( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 10th, 2014 03:20 pm (UTC)
Apr. 10th, 2014 04:26 pm (UTC)
You mean I might finally get to fulfill my life-long dream of flight? I've wanted to since I was 6, at least! Senators Moran and Roberts are cosponsors of S. 2103 and Mike Pompeo is a cosponsor of H.R. 3708, but I might write them anyway!
Apr. 10th, 2014 04:45 pm (UTC)
I agree -- it won't actually help *you*, though -- the bills say you must have either passed your last medical or never had one, just like Sport Pilot. :/
Apr. 10th, 2014 05:37 pm (UTC)
:P That sucks... but in reading the bills, I don't see that. 2(a)(1) is the closest that it comes to that, but if you can drive a car, it seems you should be able to fly a plane.

Edited at 2014-04-10 05:41 pm (UTC)
Apr. 11th, 2014 05:37 am (UTC)
huh, perhaps I am wrong! that was true of the last proposal I saw but maybe not this one. IRTE.
Apr. 10th, 2014 06:23 pm (UTC)
Well, I hope to have my medical mess worked out faster than house & senate bills can pass, so I'm not counting on this anyway!

But it could help me in five years, I won't have to get my medical renewed again so no risk of repeating all this!
Apr. 10th, 2014 07:41 pm (UTC)
Just putting this out there: Maybe we should have to pass some sort of basic medical exam to drive cars. Like, not just "do you see the red light?" I'm thinking here of my grandfather who has peripheral neuropathy that makes his feet so numb he has trouble walking and arthritis that makes it impossible to lift his arm above his shoulder or rapidly turn a steering wheel. But (after cataract surgery) he can (once again) read the letters and see the blinking red dot, so he's okay to drive.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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