Well said Lizad, Sure, I know guys in their 60's who could kick out the miles and bury me when I was in my 40's, but that is an exception. The same with mental acuity, there will be a few who are dedicated enough to overcome age related slowdown simply because they realize they aren't at the top of their game anymore. But the vast majority are relying on past experience and belief that any future decision will be handled as it was in the past. PS Hornet, I retired at 56 with my bucket full. If you seem to think you have the pull to order a urine test for me, come on over, I'll pee on your hand!
Hornet. Good job, you keep yourself rested and healthy for the next days flying. I found some Captains doing the same over my last two decades flying, most of that time in the right seat.
I can assure you from that time flying with many Captain's as well as the additonal FO, i'd give the Captains the nod for doing the most stupid @#$%.
I've found myself without a pulse on my fellow Captain's performance after moving to the left seat. I can assure you and others that if I have lost that insight in a little less than three years, those here in the left seat for a decade or more of constant flying with the same crews have little insight to thier fellow Captains.
I've seen former "stud" pilots now old men brag about their new layover girlfriend. Of course she's hot they'd say, then she shows up and she's a pig. Same goes for bragging about their golf game. Out on the links, they suck and hold the score card two feet from their face to read it. Others were also quite pompous with their flight command, but not contribution to the seismic research from their landings. Yes kids, there are 411A clones out there. The Petri has overflowed a few times over the years
I think 65 is enough for being an airline pilot/captain.Let's face it guys,it has to end somewhere and sometime.If you haven't made the pot of gold by then you haven't been too prudent.The money argument is always compelling and surprisingly while heading for grizzled veteran status myself(where did the time go?) I would not relish flying beyond 65.
I wonder just how long lambourne has had this fixation with teeth and gums? I suppose he'll be quite happy to be referred to as a 'gummer' when he passes 60, assuming he passes 60 of course. The issue is not the number of years attached to your CV, it is simply your ability to do the job required. If your health and mental dexterity are adequate to perform the task, then get on with it. I'm quite certain that there are stastistics to show that suffering a heart attack at the controls of your aircraft age 60+ is no more likely than the F/O collapsing of a stroke or acute food poisoning, hence the raising of the retirement age. If bile is a requirement for a happy and fulfilling life in the RHS of lambourne's airline then he should continue to enjoy his work well into his 60s. I'm glad I don't have to fly anywhere withing the USA if the guy doing the poling is in that state of mind when he's sat alongside a 'gummer'.
It remain to be seen of he died in a Spitfire crash, or if he crashed a Spitfire and died. He had 30000+ hours if I got the numbers correct.
As the number of over 60 (not to say over 65) pilots are low compared to the below 60 group, every time a dinosaur kills himself, or himself + 150 passengers, the age factor should be examined very closely.
I'm a GA pilot and wish to apologize for intruding, but I'm amazed at some of the posts I've read in this thread. Flying is my passion, and professionally I'm a 52 yo surgeon and professor of surgery in an University Hospital. The bottomline in both professions is SAFETY, centered on PAX or patient. Both in the air and in the OR, I've always considered safety depending on proficiency, strict adherence to rules, be it protocols or SOP, and physical and mental capability to perform. But most of all, I deeply believe it's far beyond individuality and should be centered on TEAMWORK. Flight safety is, in my opinion a CREW thing and the team cohesion should be the ultimate goal. It should, then, depend on respect, willingness to teach and learn, keeping an open mind to other's opinions, irrespective of their age, but bearing in mind that what we loose in the gesture (physical or mental) is gained in experience throughout the years. It's also about letting go of our egoes and keeping the door open not to hold back sharing and criticism when needed. The posts I've been eagerly reading in this thread sometimes appear to tell the opposite, and diminish the highest standards of the "pilot profession", that I so deeply admire and try to reproduce in my surgical teams. As in surgery, age per se should not be regarded as a limiting factor, as long as the other criteria are present and verified. Thanks and fly safe
Perhaps I can inject a bit of hard science into this debate.
Correlation is not causation. In other words, just because you see a link between A and B does not mean that A causes B, or that B causes A.
There is a correlation between increasing age and physical deterioration and disability. However, age alone doesn't cause these.
The correlation exists for aircraft as well as people. The older an aircraft is, the more likely it is to fail. However, no regulation that I'm aware of requires aircraft to be scrapped beyond a certain chronological age. Should all DC-3s be declared un-airworthy because of their age? It's exactly the same question that exists for aging pilots.
Currently, DC-3s can continue to fly as long as they are certified airworthy, and age doesn't enter into it. Is there a reason why this should not also be the case for pilots? If a pilot passes all the tests, why should he be forcibly retired just because of age? If the tests don't prove him competent, then the tests need to change.
If you start assuming that age is synonymous with incompetence, then should you extend this to other correlations that haven't been proven to be causation? For example, black people have a much higher incidence of severe hypertension than white people. Should black pilots be denied medicals because their race is correlated with higher incidence of hypertension? Or should black pilots simply be tested using the same criteria as white pilots, and then be issued medical certifications if they pass the tests, irrespective of race?
Women tolerate high accelerations much better than men. Should men be denied medical certification for flying fighter airplanes because their sex is correlated with a lower tolerance for high Gs? Or should both men and women be tested using the same criteria, with anyone passing the tests being allowed to become a pilot?
Not for... lambourne. The old timers control the process, and if they lobby hard enough (and I suspect they will) age 70 is within reach, in a few years. Even many younger pilots seem to like the present age 65 agenda, as wages have stagnated and company funded pension plans at some carriers have....gone away. In short, there is nothing much lambourne can do about it, except of course, bit*h and moan.