UK Parliament raises concerns over Flight Time Limitations
19 days before the Flight Time Limitations vote in the EU Parliament (EP), the UK Transport Committee has questioned the scientific basis of the new EU rules and requested the EU Commission to address a number of issues.
In a report following up on the European Commission’s proposals on flight and duty time limitations, Members of the UK Parliament expressed their concerns about the flying limits at night which scientists have repeatedly red-flagged as unsafe. They also remain concerned about the maximum standby and flight duty period which, under the new rules, could require a pilot to land a plane after being awake for up to 22 hours.
Notably, the Committee has criticised the UK Government for choosing not to press for a lower limit for night flights in accordance with the scientific evidence on this matter. For example, in June, following a motion in its Parliament, the Dutch government had taken a solid stance on the excessively long night flight limits and requested the EU Commission to set a 10-hour limit as consistently recommended by scientists.
The report – a second one on this issue from the UK Transport Committee – reconfirms the concerns voiced by professional airline pilots across Europe. With a few weeks remaining until the EU Parliament vote on the Commission proposal, Europe’s pilots consider rejection of the FTL rules as the EP’s only reasonable option.