* Rule-making would be needed for rest rules
* FAA seeks more transparency on pilot performance
* Big airlines will work with FAA on pilot training
(Adds Babbitt airline comment)
WASHINGTON, June 15 The U.S. government will seek
to toughen rest requirements for airline pilots with fatigue an
issue in the crash of a commuter flight near Buffalo, New York, in
February that killed 50 people.
Randy Babbitt, the Federal Aviation Administration
administrator, told a group of industry and safety officials on
Monday that action on flight and duty time would be part of a
comprehensive response to the Colgan Air crash.
Colgan is a unit of Pinnacle Airlines Corp PNCL.O.
"We need to bring human factors into these rules," Babbitt
later told reporters about steps the agency is taking to try to
make pilot performance records more transparent and its longer
range plans to enhance training and reduce fatigue.
Standards for flying hours and time spent on duty but not in
the cockpit, have been in place for decades. But attempts by
pilots and safety advocates to tighten them have fallen short.
Major U.S. airlines said in a statement on Monday through
their trade group that they will work with the FAA to review pilot
training, another issue in the Colgan crash.
Smaller regional carriers, like Pinnacle, said in a separate
statement they support establishment of a database of pilot
records to improve recruitment and hiring practices.
Pilot performance records, which can be hard to obtain when an
airline is reviewing a job applicant, is also an issue for
officials investigating the crash.
(Reporting by John Crawley; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)