FAA Extensions due to COVID-19 Situation?
Votes
Joined 09/11/2019 - 17 Posts
Answered By AOPA
Does anyone know if the FAA is considering extensions for flight reviews, knowledge tests, and medicals?  My FAA 3rd class medical expires at the end of next month and my AME is not taking appointments for airman medical exams due to the COVID-19 crisis.
22 Replies
Votes
Joined 01/30/2020 - 11 Posts
AOPA Staff Answer
As of today, we are still waiting for some word from the FAA on how they will handle expiring certifications over the next few months.  For those of you on Special Issuances and can't get into your doctor's or AME's offices to renew those authorizations, you might want to consider going the BasicMed route IF you can get into a physician who is doing those exams, and can otherwise meet the BasicMed requirements---that is, have held a valid medical on or after July 15,2006 and your most recent medical was not denied, suspended, revoked, or withdrawn, and you fly an a/c that meets the 6000 lbs and six occupant seat limit.
Stay tuned and soon as we hear something from the FAA, we will post the update online.  Hope everyone is tolerably managing their new reality and staying healthy!
Votes
Joined 01/30/2020 - 16 Posts
AOPA has sent a letter to FAA Administrator, Steve Dickson requesting the FAA provide extensions during the COVID-19 crisis (see attached).
 
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Joined 10/27/2018 - 23 Posts
I am in the same position.

Last medical as 9th April 2018, so good until the end of next month.

Flight review was May 2018.

Annual on airplane due end of May 2020 - just had a 50 hour check done an hour ago.

Was planning to collect parts for annual at Sun n Fun.

Now here's the kicker - I am British and live in Dominica (not the Dominican Republic!), there is a great A&P in Guadeloupe with an IA on St Barths - so good for inspections (well except they changed the AOE at St Francois on Guadeloupe to French language only - I do have a crib sheet though!) - of course they have closed the boarder, so that will be fun.

US closed the boarder to British passport holders - the armed admin man at the immigration will likely not be too impressed with the fact that I have not been to Europe since last August - so no way to get to the medical examiner nor the CFI for the review.

They have postponed Sun n Fun so no parts for the annual either.

Hoping that the medical and the flight review dates are maybe given a three or ideally a six month extension - not holding my breath though. As to the annual, that is the big problem, annoying as I maybe do 4-5 hours a month and have just has a 50 hour and works done (only thing not done is I need new brake discs - to have been picked up at Sun n Fun) - I would hope they may say if one is not yet at 100 hours since last annual or 50 hours since a 50 that one could go to the need for a 100hr.

A real kicker - I have volunteered my airplane for use in the current emergency - our sea ports are closed and there are only two light airplanes here, both at the small airport 10 minutes from the capital - the other one is an hour and a half away - thought if things needed to be bought in urgently my plane could be used.

Weird how things come together to create a serious mess.

I would think extending the need for class two and class three medicals and flight reviews by six months would help; carrying us past September when things are predicted to be improving.

Extending the annuals to 100 hours total time or 50 hours past a 50 would make sense - going beyond that or for airplanes involved in commercial operations would be maybe too risky - of course all with the blessing of one's insurance company.

Good luck to all, wash your hands, don't socialise and swab the rental planes with rubbing alcohol before and after use!!!!
Votes
Joined 09/19/2019 - 39 Posts
Just received this, yesterday midday:

From:                        9-AMC-AME-SEM-REGISTRATION (FAA)
To:                             Dr Chien
Subject:                    Important Information Regarding COVID-19
Date:                         Friday, March 20, 2020 1:33:31 PM

Dear AME,
In light of the ongoing COVID-19 efforts, we appreciate the challenges AMEs are facing in the current practice environment. At this time, airmen medical certification procedures have not changed. All airman medical certification examinations must be performed face-to-face on the schedule specified in 14 CFR part 61.23. We are exploring contingency options during this National Emergency.
 
In the interim, we highly encourage AMEs to follow CDC and local public health guidance. To the greatest extent possible, please try to separate well airmen from ill patients either by space or time.
 
There is erroneous information that the FAA has directed airmen flying international routes not to see their AME or complete an airman medical exam. This is simply not true. Airmen who have followed FAA guidance for international flight crews (to include sanitized crew quarters and limited overseas social contact) are at low risk for COVID-19 and should proceed with their required exam. On the other hand, if your office pre-screening identifies an airman with respiratory symptoms, please refer to CDC and local Public Health guidance.
 
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Joined 03/23/2020 - 1 Posts
My annual was just completed but will unlikely be able to get my transponder cert renewed and I am in a mode C veil.  I hope they consider limited maintenance resources for otherwise "airworthy" aircraft and will consider some blanket extensions in service for low-risk equipment such as a transponder.  I'm hopeful AOPA will ask about these maintenance issues in addition to pilot licensing . 

 
Votes
Joined 03/25/2020 - 2 Posts
My flight review has just expired and I have been having trouble getting this done due to COVID-19 situation. I don't see any mention of an extension for me to still fly and practice. I would like to continue to fly so I don't get rusty. Does any know if the FAA is considering this?
 
Votes
Joined 09/19/2019 - 39 Posts
Like Wildermind sez, and as per the memo I posted above, If there is going to be any relief it isn't until there is. I contributed my part- I wen to a national FAA meeting on March 11th (the Stampede was already on!) and as a result got tested today (no symptoms).  An older AME in the COVID crosshairs- I can  so veyr well understand them closing doors!
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Joined 01/30/2020 - 16 Posts
Yes Gary, flight reviews and IPCs have been mentioned too.
 
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Joined 01/30/2020 - 11 Posts
Gary, FAR 61.56 requires the flight review every 24 calendar months, and the "certification" is a logbook endorsement showing completion of the review.  The difficulty for you now probably is finding a CFI to schedule the review with.  Many flight schools and independent flight instructors are adhering to their respective state and local governments directives and are "sheltering in place" and practicing "social distancing."  Sitting in the cramped confines of typical GA aircraft doesn't meet the 6' social distancing definition, so you may not be able to get the review done for awhile yet.

The FAA is reviewing contingency plans, in response to AOPA and other aviation organizations, to take some action with respect to certain time limited certifications. There has been no announcement regarding that as of now, but we hope to hear something in the next few days.  And whether regulatory flight reviews might be included in that announcement remains to be seen. Keep an eye on our home page for updates.  Stay well!
Votes
Joined 10/27/2018 - 23 Posts
According to a post on Pprune - the Canadian CAA has given a blanket extension until June on medical examinations - not clear on flight reviews.

The CAA in the UK has given extensions that seem to run to October on Class 1 and Class 3 - to be clear a Class 3 is what ancillary people have - the Class 2 is the PPL like a Class 3 FAA - from the posting there is no mention of Class 2 - could be a typo as I would have though that a Class 1 is the most important.

Goes to show though that other aviation authorities are getting ahead of the problem.

In my case my medical is good to end of April, my flight review May - then I hit problems with my annual (also May) - just had a 50 hour done and some work (new exhaust stack and mufflers) - less than one hour tach time since then - so that was a few thousand dollars - as thing looks it could make that 0.9 hours my most expensive ever;)