The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation held its annual conference today on the aviation industry, featuring the head of the Federal Aviation Administration and senior airline executives. This event comes in the midst of a debate over air traffic controller fatigue problems and an investigation of recent incidents where pieces of Southwest airline planes ripped off in mid-flight.
During a panel discussion Federal Aviation Administrator Randolf Babbitt said his agency is vigorously addressing the problem of air traffic controller fatigue, adding that congressional failure to provide regular funding for the F.A.A. was creating a less safe flying environment for the public.
Also today, U.S. Chamber of Commerce CEO Tom Donohue said the federal government needs to regulate less, spend more on infrastructure, produce more oil and stay out of labor disputes in order help the nation’s aviation industry. He was the first speaker at the Chamber’s annual aviation industry conference in Washington.