Aviation (1 - 10 of 215 items)
Commercial Space: FAA Should Examine How to Appropriately Regulate Space Support Vehicles
GAO-17-100: Published: Nov 25, 2016. Publicly Released: Nov 25, 2016.
Company officials GAO interviewed identified potential uses for “space support vehicles”—which include a variety of aircraft from high-performance jets to balloons and the aircraft portion of a hybrid launch systems (a vehicle that contains elements of both an aircraft and a rocket-powered launch vehicle)—but the size of the market for these uses is unclear. Company officials said they pla...
General Aviation: Observations Related to Liability Insurance Requirements and Coverage for Aircraft Owners
GAO-15-740: Published: Sep 9, 2015. Publicly Released: Sep 9, 2015.
Based on GAO's 50-state survey of state aviation officials and analysis of state statutes and regulations identified by such officials, the vast majority of states do not have liability insurance requirements for general aviation (GA) aircraft owners and operators (i.e., pilots). As of April 2015, 11 states have some variation of a liability insurance requirement or aircraft financial-responsibili...
Aviation Safety: Proposals to Enhance Aircraft Tracking and Flight Data Recovery May Aid Accident Investigation, but Challenges Remain
GAO-15-443: Published: Apr 16, 2015. Publicly Released: May 18, 2015.
The crash of Air France Flight 447 (AF447) off the coast of Brazil in June 2009 and the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 (MH370) in the southern Indian Ocean in March 2014 highlight several challenges authorities may face in locating aircraft in distress and recovering flight recorders. First, oceanic surveillance is limited, and an aircraft's position may not be precisely known. For...
Aviation Safety: FAA's Efforts to Implement Recommendations to Improve Certification and Regulatory Consistency Face Some Challenges
GAO-14-728T: Published: Jul 23, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 23, 2014.
The Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Aircraft Certification Service (Aircraft Certification) is responsible for addressing the certification and approval process recommendations, and has made progress. Aircraft Certification is implementing and has set milestones for completing 14 initiatives, several of which were originally begun as part of earlier certification process improvement effort...
Aviation Safety: Additional Oversight Planning by FAA Could Enhance Safety Risk Management
GAO-14-516: Published: Jun 25, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 25, 2014.
The Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Air Traffic Organization completed Safety Management System (SMS) implementation in 2010, and five other FAA organizations are implementing it now. SMS is an approach to collect and analyze safety data to identify hazards, manage risks, and take corrective action before an accident occurs. FAA's implementation activities include developing internal SMS g...
Aviation Safety: FAA Efforts Have Improved Safety, but Challenges Remain in Key Areas
GAO-13-442T: Published: Apr 16, 2013. Publicly Released: Apr 16, 2013.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is responsible for approving the design and airworthiness of new aircraft and equipment before they are introduced into service. FAA approves changes to aircraft and equipment based on evaluation of industry submissions against standards set forth in federal aviation regulations and related guidance documents. In September 2011, we reported that, overall,...
Department of Transportation: Key Issues and Management Challenges, 2013
GAO-13-402T: Published: Mar 14, 2013. Publicly Released: Mar 14, 2013.
Leveraging surface transportation investments to further national interests: The Department of Transportation (DOT) faces several challenges leveraging investment in surface transportation networks to meet national goals and priorities. For example, DOT has to transition to a goal-oriented, performance-based approach for highway and transit programs, as required by the Moving Ahead for Progress in...
General Aviation Safety: Additional FAA Efforts Could Help Identify and Mitigate Safety Risks
GAO-13-36: Published: Oct 4, 2012. Publicly Released: Oct 4, 2012.
The number of nonfatal and fatal general aviation accidents decreased from 1999 through 2011; more than 200 fatal accidents occurred in each of those years. Airplanesparticularly single-engine piston airplanesflying personal operations were most often involved in accidents. Most general aviation accidents are attributed to pilot error and involved a loss of aircraft control. Some segments of t...
Aviation Safety: FAA Has An Opportunity to Enhance Safety and Improve Oversight of Initial Pilot Training
GAO-12-537T: Published: Mar 20, 2012. Publicly Released: Mar 20, 2012.
FAAs pilot training requirements for certification of commercial pilots are not aligned with airline operations or emphasize skills that airlines consider important for greater aviation safety.Requirements do not emphasize training in decision-making, although this skill is essential to the airline pilot profession. According to FAA and other stakeholders, the regulations regarding ground sc...
Commercial Space Transportation: Industry Trends and Key Issues Affecting Federal Oversight and International Competitiveness
GAO-11-629T: Published: May 5, 2011. Publicly Released: May 5, 2011.
Since GAO reported on the commercial space launch industry in 2006 and 2009, the industry has evolved and moved further toward space tourism. Commercial space tourism promises to make human space travel available to the public for the first time. In addition, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) plans to use private companies to transport cargo, and eventually personnel, to the...