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Thursday, 26 March, 2020

FAA Grants NATA Requested Crewmember Relief

Washington, DC, March 26, 2020 – Yesterday, the FAA issued exemptions in response to the National Air Transportation Association’s (NATA) requests for relief from certain crew training and checking requirements for Part 135 operators.

The two exemptions granted to NATA are available to all Part 119 certificated carriers operating under Part 135. Two additional exemptions granted to A4A provide similar relief for those conducting training under Part 121. All operators seeking to use the available relief are required to provide a Letter of Intent to the FAA in the manner and form described in the exemption, obtain Operations Specification A005 from their FAA inspector, and follow other conditions and limitations outlined within the exemption. Every Part 135 operator should obtain and carefully review these exemptions.

Exemption No. 18509

Regulations addressed: §§ 135.293(b), 135.295(e) and (g), 135.297(c)(1)(i) and (ii), 135.331(c)(3), (5), and (7), 135.347(a), and 135.351(b)(2) and (c)Provides alternative methods to conduct certain required crewmember emergency procedures during recurrent and upgrade training, testing, and checking.

Exemption No. 18510

Regulations addressed: §§ 135.245(c), 135.247(a), 135.301(a), 135.323(b), 135.337(g), 135.338(g), 135.339(b), 135.340(b), and 135.505(d)

Provides additional time for completion of recurrent training and qualification activities for ground personnel and crewmembers of up to three calendar months after the month that the activity was due to have been completed. 

Exemption No. 18511 and Exemption No. 18512 provide similar relief for those Part 135 operators required or opting to comply with Part 121 training regulations.


"NATA staff has been meeting with FAA and other government officials daily during this crisis to obtain the latest information for members and provide input on industry needs. The Association is grateful the FAA is acting quickly to ensure necessary access to air transportation remains available,” stated NATA President and CEO Timothy Obitts.

“These exemptions address several currency matters of operators. I am confident additional action granting relief for certain expiring pilot medicals is forthcoming. In this time of great need, NATA and our members value the FAA’s willingness to collaborate on effective solutions,” stated NATA Vice President John McGraw.

Also available is guidance on required drug and alcohol testing programs .

Additional information and resources are available on NATA’s website at .

For general press inquiries, contact Shannon Chambers at 703-298-1347 or

The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has been the voice of aviation business for 80 years. Representing nearly 3,700 aviation businesses, NATA’s member companies provide a broad range of services to general aviation, the airlines and the military and NATA serves as the public policy group representing the interests of aviation businesses before Congress and the federal agencies.