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Age 60: Change Pilots Mandatory Retirement Age?  
User currently offlineAirRyan From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 2532 posts, RR: 5
Posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4378 times:

I'm reading about the NW and DL Ch11 filings and in particular about what might happen if NW doesn't get the Congress to pass a pension plan that would allow them to keep it but pay it over a longer period of time. Suffice to say, the pilots were the only labor unions with NW that was willing to deal and that's probably because they have the most to lose if NW has to dump their pensions onto the Federal Government.

http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/business/national/12655162.htm

As I understand it, if their pensions go to the PBGC they would be capped about $45,000 a year which would hurt the pilots the most as their pensions are understandably the highest. But on top of all that, what really would hurt would be the fact that under the current FAA laws an airline pilot can only fly up until age 60, but if these pilots had their pensions dumped onto the Feds they couldn't even begin to start collecting until age 65!!!

In a day in age when we allow Supreme Court Justices to stay on the bench into their 80's, collecting $200k+ a year in salary to boot, not to mention the plethora of modern medicine that allows us all to live longer and better, I think the time has come that we change the mandatory retirement age to at least 65 if not 70. Take a Class 1 every 3 months if need be but age 60 is just an archaic injustice - we are prematurely retiring our best and most experienced pilots.

13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineIkramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21476 posts, RR: 60
Reply 1, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4371 times:

No way. There is no need, and while there are surely pilots over 60 who can perform as well as a 35 year old, there are also surely who are starting to become dangerous. Knowing how forgetful both of my parents have become as they approach/pass 60, I don't want a 70 year old pilot out there.

Worse, they will demand seniority pay for being 70, and who believes they are more valuable than someone half their age just because they've hung around that long?



Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
User currently offlineApodino From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 4234 posts, RR: 6
Reply 2, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4371 times:

My belief is this, as long as you can pass a Class 1 medical and pass a sim ride, you are as qualified as anyone to fly the airplane, regardless of age. The pilots unions have been opposed to this, knowing that they could retire with their pensions. Now, who knows. The public seems to want experience up front, while the FAA claims the age 60 rule is what the public wants.

User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4359 times:

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 1):
No way. There is no need, and while there are surely pilots over 60 who can perform as well as a 35 year old, there are also surely who are starting to become dangerous. Knowing how forgetful both of my parents have become as they approach/pass 60, I don't want a 70 year old pilot out there.

Worse, they will demand seniority pay for being 70, and who believes they are more valuable than someone half their age just because they've hung around that long?

Ikramerica, I hate to tell you, but the US is way behind the rest of the world. Most countries in the world are either at 62 or 65 for retirement. Those that currently are still age 60 are in the process of reviewing the age.

So, while you might not like the fact that pilots will fly beyond age 60, you should get used to it!


User currently offlineSeven3Seven From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 317 posts, RR: 23
Reply 4, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4353 times:

Don't comment on stuff you don't know anything about.

Age 60 should stay...

Until I reach age 59



My views are mine alone and are not that of any of my fellow employees, officers, or directors at my company
User currently offlineGreasespot From Canada, joined Apr 2004, 3078 posts, RR: 20
Reply 5, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 4290 times:

Quoting Seven3Seven (Reply 4):
Don't comment on stuff you don't know anything about

Ummm 90% of the posts in here are from people who have no idea what they are talking about...

GS



Sometimes all you can do is look them in the eye and ask " how much did your mom drink when she was pregnant with you?"
User currently offlineAirRyan From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 2532 posts, RR: 5
Reply 6, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 4279 times:

Quoting Seven3Seven (Reply 4):
Don't comment on stuff you don't know anything about.

Age 60 should stay...

Until I reach age 59

That certainly sounds like a logical and well thought out plan - for an ostrich that is!  Smile

Sounds like I should forward this to my Congressman and Senator.


User currently offlineFlyHoss From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 598 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 4267 times:

Quoting AirRyan (Thread starter):
As I understand it, if their pensions go to the PBGC they would be capped about $45,000 a year which would hurt the pilots the most as their pensions are understandably the highest. But on top of all that, what really would hurt would be the fact that under the current FAA laws an airline pilot can only fly up until age 60, but if these pilots had their pensions dumped onto the Feds they couldn't even begin to start collecting until age 65!!!

One more point - since pilots retire at 60, the PBGC further punishes the pilots for retiring early and that $45K is reduced to about $28K!

Go ahead, kick the (former) Captain while he's down...



A little bit louder now, a lil bit louder now...
User currently offlineIkramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21476 posts, RR: 60
Reply 8, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 4253 times:

Look, as others have pointed out, just because the rest of the world does something less safe, doesn't mean that it is okay.

I know that for MANY people, it's not reflexes so much as memory that goes starting at 60 or even before. The little things, things you forget to do but SHOULD NOT FORGET TO DO. I don't care if there ARE people past 60 that can do it, I do care that we have to cut it off somewhere, and we aren't adding danger by saying 60 is the limit, but we could be adding danger by saying 70 is. PERIOD.

Make all the arguments you want, it doesn't change the fact that upping the age can ONLY be a change that saves money at the potential expense of safety. Or put another way, there is NO WAY that upping the age increases safety. Absolutely no way.

Just because we are living longer does NOT mean that for critical jobs we can do them longer.

Or is it all a bunch of bunk how important pilots are and how much risk they take? Why is it that everyone cries wolf when airlines want to "cut corners" in other ways to save money, but here, because it is a personnel issue that keeps people in jobs longer, it can't be a bad thing?



Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
User currently offlinePIA747 From Pakistan, joined Apr 2003, 624 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 4241 times:

Considering all posts here are non-factual. I thought i will take a different course..

Aerospace Medical Association finds no medical support for the Age 60 Rule

After 2-plus years of study, the Aerospace Medical Association's Civil Aviation Safety Subcommittee found last year (2004) that there is insufficient medical evidence and/or accident record to support airline pilot restrictions based on age alone. The Subcommittee thus suggests that the Association abandon its 20-plus year prior policy of support, and recommends that the FAA abandon the Age 60 Rule altogether, change the cutoff criteria, or raise the age limit. Note: This was one of the sources cited by ICAO in justifying it increase of the age limit for airline pilots.

The Subcommittee's recommendation to the Association's governing body, dated January 15, 2004, can be viewed at:
http://age60rule.com/docs/2004_ASMA_Position.pdf

The paper was published in the Association's scientific journal Aviation, Space and Environmental Medicine, Vol. 75, No.8, August 2004


User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 4229 times:

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 8):
Look, as others have pointed out, just because the rest of the world does something less safe, doesn't mean that it is okay.

I know that for MANY people, it's not reflexes so much as memory that goes starting at 60 or even before. The little things, things you forget to do but SHOULD NOT FORGET TO DO. I don't care if there ARE people past 60 that can do it, I do care that we have to cut it off somewhere, and we aren't adding danger by saying 60 is the limit, but we could be adding danger by saying 70 is. PERIOD.

First of all, you're not even a pilot! What makes you qualified to make a statement such as you have?

The simple fact of the matter is, there is no statistical evidence that pilots between the ages of 60-65 are any more of a health risk than any other group!

Do you even know the history of the "Age 60 Rule"? I suggest before you start commenting on it you do a little research and find just how arbitrary that original rule was!


User currently offlineScbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 12401 posts, RR: 46
Reply 11, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 4208 times:
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Ikramerica, remind me to come round and euthanase you the day you turn 60! If you don't forget that is!  sarcastic 

Using your logic a captain is perfectly safe till the day he turns 60. At 59 years and 364 days he's fine, but one extra day turns him in to a no-memory, now-where-did-I-leave-my-colostomy-bag, retard?

And yes, the rest of the World is crazy to continue to let captains fly past 60. Next time I fly I'll insist on knowing how old the captain is.



Time flies like an arrow, but fruit flies like a banana!
User currently offlineNugpot From South Africa, joined Jun 2005, 32 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 4208 times:

I'll post the same contribution that I made on PPruNe. You can find the rest of the PPruNe discussion here:

Edited: Sorry, sruggling to post the URL. PPruNe forums, Rumours & News, Age 60 Batlle vs ALPA

So, if it is discriminatory to enforce retirement at 60, is it not also discriminatory to enforce retirement at 62, 63, 65 or some other arbitrary age? I know that you are comparing 60 to some other arbitrary standard of 65, but there are various other professions that have no retirement age and some (as pointed out previously ATC's) that retire at 55.

Further, if pilots should be allowed to fly "on condition" past the current 60, should upgrades in your company then not also happen "on condition"? Why not advertise LHS positions in your company and let the best suitably qualified person (written exams, sim performance, interview) get the job without any regard for seniority. Oh, but that would leave room for the company to manipulate command, would it not?

I think that there should be a mandatory retirement age for pilots. I have flown with useless 40 year old captains and perfect 59 year olds, but I have seen the effects of age in the best 59 year old captains (screens on "grill", cockpit speaker on "bullhorn"). I think 60 is a good age to leave the airline. If you can still operate safely, go and fly Part 91 where you can transfer your considerable experience to some newbie or share war stories with your compatriot.

SAA pilots voted recently to increase retirement age to 63. The vote was narrowly won by the pro's, but probably because SAA had been employing 40 year old RHS's for the past few years and they would be lucky if they saw the LHS in under 15 years and would probably need to work to 63 to make financial provision for their retirement.

I have heard a rumour that management might make the 63 rule happen. That has had some unfortunate effects down the line. SA regs forbid command over the border over 60 years. This means that the captains staying after 60 now have to fly domestically. Cape Town seems to be the retirement capital of SA and these guys now all want to move to Cape Town and any more junior captain who wants to live in Cape Town (and there are many who have lived there all their lives) is now buggered.

If this happens, it would also kill the movement from other airlines to SAA, thereby effectively removing opportunities from the bottom of the pile. The SA aviation industry is very small by international standards. Something like 3200 ATPL's and Comm's combined (about 1400 airline pilots) and hiring might come to a complete standstill for 3 years.

Retirement age is probably the second most emotive issue after seniority, and I think that if the industry wants to move into the future, seniority should go where flight engineers and navigators went. When that is done, the 60 year old first officers who could never get command, can vote age 63 in. (For first officers obviously)  

[Edited 2005-09-16 08:48:05]

[Edited 2005-09-16 08:50:57]

User currently offlineLightsaber From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 12905 posts, RR: 100
Reply 13, posted (8 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 4172 times:
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Quoting Apodino (Reply 2):
My belief is this, as long as you can pass a Class 1 medical and pass a sim ride, you are as qualified as anyone to fly the airplane, regardless of age.



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 3):

Ikramerica, I hate to tell you, but the US is way behind the rest of the world. Most countries in the world are either at 62 or 65 for retirement.

With the dramatic improvement in "silver years" health and vitality, I agree that pilots should be able to fly later into life. My personal opinion is to increase the age to 65 immediately. Of course, Apondino has the right idea, there must be criteria to be passed to show that any pilot is healthy/fit/skilled.

And yes, I have thought what this means for all of those 30 year old pilots starting out: a slower climb into the 747/777/340/380 captains seat.

Lightsaber



Societies that achieve a critical mass of ideas achieve self sustaining growth; others stagnate.
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