Capt. Prater Attends NextGen Symposium

February 27, 2009 - ALPA President Capt. John Prater on February 25 represented the Association at an international gathering of government and industry representatives convened to discuss the need for improvement of the air traffic management efficiency in the New York area. The focus of the discussions was the economic impact on commerce in the area, and participants were encouraged to explain their organizations’ views on how to move forward with modernization efforts for the airspace and air traffic control.

Prater pointed out that the complexity of the region’s airspace leads to unique challenges in the area but also noted that ALPA pilots fly into metropolitan areas similar to the New York area everyday, and some of those are able to accommodate more traffic safely. Some gains can be made quickly by taking advantage of the significant capabilities already on board most airliners. Additional improvements are possible by accelerating development of existing technologies such as RNAV and RNP procedures that optimize flight paths, rather than simple “overlays” of existing procedures.

Prater reaffirmed the ALPA commitment to continued participation in efforts to modernize airspace, with the focus on improved efficiency and maintaining or increasing existing levels of safety.