21st Feb 2001, 04:09
Im not trying to start a pi**ing contest either way, I'd just like to get some opinions from everyone out there on which system provides better training.
My Personal belief is although weaker on the groundschool side of things, the FAA provides far better training. In my opinion the JAA training curriculum is antiquated and does not provide enough aeronautical experience.
21st Feb 2001, 07:01
The Americans have a lot more aviation experience than anyone else and in my opinion have correctly identified flying as a practical pursuit. Pilots fly planes they do not design them. The acid test of my opinion is quite simple. Ask any pilot with a JAA ATPL to sit the exams again and he will tell you that he would have no chance of passing them unless he embarked on a rigorous course of study again. Ask the same of An FAA ATP and you will find that he wouldn't be opposed to having a go at the ATP exam on spec. Why is this? Some would suggest that he US exams are a joke, not so.
The reason is that the US exams ask relevant questions with straightforward answers and anybody currently flying should be familiar with the content of the test. The European model on the other hand sets a barrier which must be overcome and once passed forgotten about. This really begs the question "if once I have passed these things I can forget them, then why did I have to pass them in the first place. Are the European Exams needed to ensure that pilots are safe? No, if they were then how come the 700,000 or so US pilots (who never did them)have as good if not a better safety record?
21st Feb 2001, 07:39
It's my opinion...and it's going to stay that way...no answer.
What I will say is that I saw a bunch of very qualified FAA flight instructors going through a conversion course at FlightSafety International in Florida.
Every one of them - to a man - said that the "CAA" system was better...and changed their own ways accordingly.
Also, studies by the FAA into "wheels up landings", in the training environment, in the year 2000 show that there was a qualified flight instructor on board every single one of them.
The FAA are looking for ways to improve the quality of their 'certified flight instructors'.....does that help you form an opinion?
21st Feb 2001, 18:19
The JAA route is more expensive, more time consuming, and more difficult, but minimum
standards are higher.
The safety record in the US is very good
however, so why bother ?
A lot of all this is political, bureaucratic vested interest dressed up as safety.
Many of the pilots approaching LHR, CDG as you read this have a 'mere' FAA rating and they are perfectly OK.
It never fails to amaze me how many pilots in the UK critisise the Americans and then climb into their American built aircraft to fly it it in a traditional British way!
I am British, holding a UK licence but regard this as unwarranted arrogance.
I quite often hear that the quality of pilots in Europe has to be beter because of the poor vis and the congested
airspace. I used to buy that until I did a bit of flying in New Jersey in October
and now I know its a lie.....