FAA Staffing:

Air Traffic Controllers' Work Load and Operational Performance

RCED-87-138FS: Published: May 6, 1987. Publicly Released: May 11, 1987.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) air traffic control work force at 15 control centers and 25 terminals and provided data on: (1) air traffic safety; (2) full-performance-level (FPL) controller staffing; (3) first-line supervisor staffing; (4) traffic management unit staffing; (5) overtime; (6) field training attrition; and (7) operational performance.

GAO found that: (1) although FAA has increased its controller work force, FPL controller staffing is below 1981 pre-strike levels; (2) staffing levels at nearly all the facilities it studied were below authorized levels; (3) FAA projects that fiscal year 1987 overtime use will increase at 12 terminal facilities and 3 centers, and will decrease at 13 terminals and 12 centers; and (4) 10 percent or more of the controllers and supervisors at many of the centers are eligible to retire.