Representatives from the White House, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), major US airlines, including Delta, America, United and Allegiant, and regional carriers ExpressJet, Horizon, GoJet, Cape Air and Envoy met at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University's Daytona Beach Campus in January for a two-day Pilot Supply and Demand Summit.
Boeing has forecast a need in North America over the next two decades for 88,000 new commercial pilots. Stringent new FAA safety training rules to qualify first officers and the looming demand for new pilots is creating the need for comprehensive solutions from the airline industry, regulators and educators to address the potential professional pilot shortage.
"We were asked by the airline industry to convene a summit composed of airline representatives, federal officers and industry leaders to discuss the critical issue of pilot supply," said Dr. Tim Brady, Dean of the College of Aviation at Embry-Riddle. "Despite a national debate on both sides of the pilot supply issue, the regional airlines are already feeling the effect. The shortage of qualified pilots has already begun to impact them deeply."
Pilot Supply Summit discussions included new FAA flight training standards, manufacturing demands and forecasts, regional and legacy airline pilot attrition and hiring demands. Potential solutions to the crisis were also proposed.