|Quoting GoAllegheny (Reply 5):|
300 hours total time in what? The type, jets, or ... heaven help us, all planes?
Yeah, all planes. My airline recently hired someone who had a commercial single / multi engine / instrument (nothing else, no CFI or anything)... and 194 hours total time... in all aircraft. They went through there very defined training course, took their checkride, and came to the airline. Absolutely zero real-world experience. Their first real world experience is going to be flying a CRJ with people in the back.
Add that plus a couple months of severely inadequate training (most regional training is pretty bad, completely unorganized, and not geared towards such inexperienced pilots... its really mostly self-guided, and a 194TT pilot can't self-guide teach themselves an advanced jet) and you have yourself a line qualified, but completely incapable, first officer. This FO is sooner or later going to be paired with a less than average/capable (50% of all are) captain and its going to be scary. I've seen some crews at my airline and at other regionals while in the jumpseat that really... really... frightened me. Theres just not enough experience in either seat. The Captain isn't experienced enough to handle things single pilot and the FO isn't experienced enough to probably even fly a Piper Seminole.
You need a captain experienced enough (hopefully through a good amount of giving flight instruction) to handle the worst of situations and a bad FO at the same time... and you need an FO who can hold their own and do their half of the job, be second in command of this jet they're flying, not act as a ill-prepared ill-trained unexperienced student.
Airlines have two choices to fill their cockpit seats, increase pay or lower requirements. Unfortunately for the sake of safety, they've chosen lowering requirements because... well, its cheaper. But even this well is trying up, they still can't fill their cockpit seats and something is going to change. The abuse and low pay for so long is finally getting them where it hurts.
One last note that I find somewhat scary. You're required to have 1200TT to fly a Piper Arrow under Part 135 flying cancelled checks from Phoenix to Tucson, but only 190TT to be an FO of a Part 121 CRJ flying 50 people in a snowstorm, at night, in the middle of winter and still be expected to handle an engine explosion on rotation.