Effective March 14, 2006, the FAA has issued further guidance to its principal operations inspectors (“POIs”) for inspections and enforcement of employers’ compliance with the Pilot Records Improvement Act (“PRIA”). As you may know, PRIA was enacted in response to a number of airline accidents involving pilots who had prior safety or training violations. PRIA requires certain employer’s employing pilots to perform background checks on new-hire pilots.
The guidance, Order 8000.88, was issued to provide “inspectors with the knowledge and necessary tools to competently observe, record, and evaluate the PRIA functions of any air carrier assigned to them” and to enable a POI “to successfully conduct an air carrier audit or an inspection of PRIA-related pilot records, as a normal surveillance procedure or in response to an alleged statutory violation.” The Order discusses PRIA, PRIA procedures, PRIA surveillance and enforcement. It also contains a compliance checklist and suggested penalties and sanctions for violations.
If you are an employer subject to PRIA, you should review the Order. Additional information regarding PRIA compliance is also available in Advisory Circular (AC) 120-68, Pilot Records Improvement Act of 1996 or on the FAA’s official PRIA website here.