As the FAA reviews a petition from AOPA and the Experimental Aircraft Association that would ease the burden of the third class medical for many pilots, the associations are using every opportunity to bring up the issue in their interactions with the FAA.
The FAA has no required timeline to respond to the petition, which would give pilots who fly recreationally an option to participate in a recurrent online education program in lieu of a medical certificate. The associations filed the request in March 2012. In the ensuing months the FAA received more than 16,000 comments, the overwhelming majority voicing support for the exemption.
The exemption would apply to aircraft in which pilots often have high time and experience—single-engine aircraft with fixed gear and 180 horsepower or less—and would limit participation to day VFR operations. By accepting the proposal, the agency would be applying a more appropriate level of aeromedical certification for this type of flying.
Find out details of the request online.