The union representing UPS pilots asked a federal court on Thursday to review the Department of Transportation’s decision to exempt cargo pilots from tougher new rules aimed at reducing fatigue in airline operations.
The Independent Pilots Association filed a petition at the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington challenging the decision issued a day earlier. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said cargo airlines could “opt-in” voluntarily to the flight limits but that the DOT’s cost-benefit analysis led to exempting them from the requirements on pilots at passenger airlines.
IPA General Counsel William Trent cited LaHood’s praise of the tighter limits in arguing cargo operations, which would mean mostly UPS and FedEx flights, should be included.
"The internal inconsistency of the final rule is remarkable,” he said. … “Two of the very factors that the FAA cites as exacerbating the risk of pilot fatigue—operating at night and crossing multiple time zones are more present in cargo operations than in passenger operations.”