Longitude
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Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Jun 14, 2008 7:11 pm

Just read somewhere that there are some height limitations for pilots. Is it true? If yes, what are the upper and the lower limit then?
 
swiftski
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Jun 14, 2008 7:19 pm

CX require minimum 1.6m tall.
 
KELPkid
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Jun 14, 2008 7:53 pm



Quoting Longitude (Thread starter):
Just read somewhere that there are some height limitations for pilots. Is it true?

The US FAA has no such restrictions, but much smaller than average people may have to use adaptive controls to demonstrate pilotage of the aircraft to FAA standards  Smile On the flip side of the coin, I'm also sure really tall pilots ( >2.3 M? ) will be quite uncomfortable in small airplane cockpits.

Of course, the airlines are free to impose their own requirements on top of the law...
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CosmicCruiser
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Jun 14, 2008 9:27 pm



Quoting KELPkid (Reply 2):
Of course, the airlines are free to impose their own requirements on top of the law...

If I remember correctly waaaay back in the 70s a female pilot applicant filed a discrimination lawsuit against Ozark because they said she had to be tall enough to go full travel on the rudder pedals and she couldn't.
 
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Moose135
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Jun 14, 2008 9:27 pm



Quoting KELPkid (Reply 2):
but much smaller than average people may have to use adaptive controls to demonstrate pilotage of the aircraft

Blocks on the rudder pedals?  Wink
I remember the USAF had minimum and maximum height requirements. In addition to short pilots having a problem reaching controls, if you are too tall, you could have a problem fitting under the canopy of a T-37 or T-38.
KC-135 - Passing gas and taking names!
 
swiftski
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Jun 14, 2008 9:34 pm



Quoting CosmicCruiser (Reply 3):
If I remember correctly waaaay back in the 70s a female pilot applicant filed a discrimination lawsuit against Ozark because they said she had to be tall enough to go full travel on the rudder pedals and she couldn't.

She should learn from this guy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_Bader

Did she win?

Quoting KELPkid (Reply 2):
The US FAA

You make a valid point; Medicals will decide this too. I don't know the requirements for each type; mine is CASA but then I'm 1m81 so its not such an issue.
 
wilco737
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sun Jun 15, 2008 6:22 am

At LH: 165cm to 196cm...

WILCO737 (MD11F)
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andz
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sun Jun 15, 2008 7:05 am



Quoting KELPkid (Reply 2):
Of course, the airlines are free to impose their own requirements on top of the law...

But if you make that same statement about flight attendants then you will get a slew of replies about how it doesn't matter how tall/short/fat they are.
After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
 
L-188
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sun Jun 15, 2008 7:27 am



Quoting KELPkid (Reply 2):
The US FAA has no such restrictions,

FAA doesn't but the USAF.

Mainly because of the limitations of ejection seat design.

But when you figure that after WWII most medical regs where based on military rules, it wouldn't surprise me to see a couple of countries might still hang onto this atiquated rule
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Ozzy738
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Tue Jun 17, 2008 7:47 am

I remember I was worried when I was finishing school - back then BA had a height limitation of 6ft3in? As I recall - that's why I decided I was going to apply to Ansett Australia - then finished school in the same week they first ceased ops  Smile

At least they let you play with all the fun toys on the ramp when you are 6ft 4  Smile

Cheers
Ozzy
 
SLUAviator
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Tue Jun 17, 2008 5:28 pm

I am 6'3" and it is a little tight for me to make it into my seat in the RJ or the 1900 I used to fly. I have flown both with guys taller than me, and it was fun to watch them get into their seats, especially in the Beech! Strangely enough, getting out is easier!
What do I know? I just fly 'em.......
 
Blackbird
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Tue Jun 17, 2008 10:50 pm

BTW: What's the USAF limitations?

Andrea Kent
 
BooDog
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Thu Jun 19, 2008 4:25 am



Quoting Blackbird (Reply 11):
BTW: What's the USAF limitations?

The limit depends on the type of plane being flown. Guys up to 6'6" have flown B52's.
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Blackbird
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 3:19 am

Okay, what's the USAF Height limitations for

-A T-38 Instructor Pilot
-An F-15 Eagle
-An FB-111 (Back when it flew)
-A C-141 Starlifter
-A C-5A Galaxy


Andrea Kent
 
PhilSquares
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 3:41 am



Quoting Blackbird (Reply 13):
Okay, what's the USAF Height limitations for

-A T-38 Instructor Pilot
-An F-15 Eagle
-An FB-111 (Back when it flew)
-A C-141 Starlifter
-A C-5A Galaxy


Andrea Kent

Check AFI 48-123 -A.430. Basically for a pilot it's 64-77 inches. Waivers are available but it depends on the aircraft. The catch 22 here is there are no waivers available for UPT. So if you meet the height requirement for UPT upon graduation you don't need a waiver.
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Moose135
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 3:58 am

From http://www.afrotc.com/collegelife/flying/prereq.php

Pilot - Physical Requirements

* Normal color vision
* Distant vision – pilots, uncorrected to 20/50
* Near vision – pilots, uncorrected to 20/20
* Meet refraction, accommodation and astigmatism requirements
* Corrective eye surgery could be a disqualifier
* Have no history of hay fever, asthma or allergies after age 12
* Meet Air Force weight and physical conditioning requirements
* Have standing height of 64 to 77 inches and sitting height of 34 to 40 inches


There are no individual requirements listed for particular aircraft.
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2H4
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 4:11 am

Quoting Moose135 (Reply 15):
There are no individual requirements listed for particular aircraft.

There seem to be some interesting physical limitations out there, though. The U-28A reportedly has a very strict pilot weight limit. I've seen a job listing for a U-28A pilot position stating a maximum allowable weight of 190lbs.

2H4

[Edited 2008-06-19 21:21:14]
Intentionally Left Blank
 
PhilSquares
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 4:24 am



Quoting 2H4 (Reply 16):
There seem to be some interesting physical limitations out there, though. The U-28A reportedly has a very strict pilot weight limit of 198 lbs

Al ejection seat equipped aircraft have similar minimum and maximum weights. 103-240 including all equipment. The T-38 is limited to 230.
Fly fast, live slow
 
2H4
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 4:31 am



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 17):
Al ejection seat equipped aircraft have similar minimum and maximum weights. 103-240 including all equipment. The T-38 is limited to 230.

Sure, but the U-28A doesn't have ejection seats. Apparently, payload is a very precious commodity in that particular aircraft.

2H4
Intentionally Left Blank
 
metroliner
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 7:01 am



Quoting WILCO737 (Reply 6):
At LH: 165cm to 196cm...

WILCO737 (MD11F)

Holy shit. I'm 196cm and have an interview with Lufthansa in August!

Toni
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buckfifty
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 7:21 am

Even if you're above or below the limit in civil ops, many airlines will give you a chance in the simulator or a mock-up to see if you can hit the switches, or be in reach of the controls with a proper seating position. Remember, most of these restrictions are set by the company, and they can give exemptions based on the pilot in question.
 
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jetmech
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 7:25 am



Quoting Longitude (Thread starter):

I remember reading something about the pilot seats in the one of the Boeing or Airbus MM's once. IIRC, they stated that the seats were designed to accommodate something like the 95th percentile of heights. I think this makes the range something like 5'6"- 6'6" or 5'4"- 6'8".

Regards, JetMech
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BooDog
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 4:09 pm



Quoting Moose135 (Reply 15):
Have standing height of 64 to 77 inches and sitting height of 34 to 40 inches

ok... I very much believe this for C-5's, bombers, etc. Plenty of tall pilots out there that fly these planes. But I don't see many fighter pilots over six feet tall. How a 6'5" pilot can safely fly some of the fighters/trainers beats me. Depending on the aircraft, their knees could limit movement of the stick, block switches, etc.
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BAE146QT
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 4:44 pm

Here's a question that's vaguely related to the thread since it's about physiology - is there an upper limit to the vital statistics of a commercial pilot?

Is it safe to assume that they might be grounded for becoming overweight to such an extent that it affects their mobility? (I'm guessing they can if they fail a medical...)

On a slight tangent, I knew a girl who was not only barely 5'6", but was also generously endowed and could barely reach the odometer reset button in her car. Last time I saw her, she was going to start commercial training... Sadly she was a friend of an ex, so I never saw her again and don't know how she got on.
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KELPkid
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 5:38 pm

Quoting BooDog (Reply 22):
ok... I very much believe this for C-5's, bombers, etc. Plenty of tall pilots out there that fly these planes. But I don't see many fighter pilots over six feet tall. How a 6'5" pilot can safely fly some of the fighters/trainers beats me. Depending on the aircraft, their knees could limit movement of the stick, block switches, etc.

There was a famous NFL player (linebacker?) who was also an A-10 Warthog pilot in the Air National Guard. His name escapes me at the moment, but I believe he was also rather tall, like 6'7"...
Aaah, Chad Hennings of the Cowboys, behold the power of Google  Smile He was a defensive lineman, which meant he is a big dude...

[Edited 2008-06-20 10:40:56]
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swiftski
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Jun 20, 2008 9:57 pm



Quoting BAe146QT (Reply 23):
Here's a question that's vaguely related to the thread since it's about physiology - is there an upper limit to the vital statistics of a commercial pilot?

Is it safe to assume that they might be grounded for becoming overweight to such an extent that it affects their mobility? (I'm guessing they can if they fail a medical...)

If you fail the medical, you can't fly, even if the airline love you to bits.
 
BAE146QT
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Jun 21, 2008 4:26 pm



Quoting Swiftski (Reply 25):
If you fail the medical, you can't fly, even if the airline love you to bits.

That's what I mean, Swiftski. I have no doubt that you would be grounded if you failed your medical, but what if you passed your medical despite (for example) becoming overweight? Perhaps I should probably find out what is involved in a commercial medical - maybe there is no way that you can pass it with restricted mobility of any sort?

In any case, I presume that the safety of the aircrat is paramount and tops any objections of discrimination?
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swiftski
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Jun 21, 2008 6:29 pm



Quoting BAe146QT (Reply 26):
That's what I mean, Swiftski. I have no doubt that you would be grounded if you failed your medical, but what if you passed your medical despite (for example) becoming overweight

If you passed and then became overweight and unfit to fly before your next renewal (in the case of CASA, Annually for Class 1) then I don't know what would happen.

Quoting BAe146QT (Reply 26):
Perhaps I should probably find out what is involved in a commercial medical - maybe there is no way that you can pass it with restricted mobility of any sort?

Again I can only speak for CASA but being weighed is a feature.

My right hand - the fingers are about 1cm smaller on each side than the left hand. You wouldn't notice it in every day situations, but if you shook my hand you'd notice. I passed the Class 1 first time, all the doc did was spend a bit of time talking to me about how I managed. I manage fine and it's somewhat of a non-issue, but my heart was pumping as I went in as I knew if I didn't get it, the career would be on hold.
 
Blackbird
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Tue Jun 24, 2008 1:59 am

PhilSquares

Quote:
Check AFI 48-123 -A.430. Basically for a pilot it's 64-77 inches. Waivers are available but it depends on the aircraft. The catch 22 here is there are no waivers available for UPT. So if you meet the height requirement for UPT upon graduation you don't need a waiver.

Okay so what's the height requirement for UPT? 64 to 77 inches?
 
stratosphere
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Tue Jun 24, 2008 3:19 am

I really don't think there are any requirements for airlines..I know of a female who was a chief pilot for NWA and is a 747-400 captain and is 5 foot tall at the most.
 
PhilSquares
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Tue Jun 24, 2008 4:00 am



Quoting Blackbird (Reply 28):
Okay so what's the height requirement for UPT? 64 to 77 inches?

Yes, that is the height restriction for entry into UPT, for the Air Force.
Fly fast, live slow
 
Blackbird
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Tue Jun 24, 2008 5:01 am

Out of curiousity, how long have those height requirements been as such. Since the USAF came to be (1947), or the last 20-40 years?


Andrea Kent
 
Longitude
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Mon Nov 23, 2009 9:40 pm

Guys, thanks for information. However we didn't enlighten much about short people.

I've decided to make this topic live again, as for me this is quite a problem now. Being a licensed flight dispatcher, I am thinking about obtaining ATPL. The problem is that I am only 156 sm tall, or 5 ft 2 inches roughly. As you know, ATPL courses cost huge amount of money. So, I have to understand the chances to find a job with such a height before making any step towards studying. In Russia, where I live, we have federal aviation regulations which state that a person, who wants to learn pilot skills, has to be between 160sm and 190sm. Without it one will not be able to pass through our state medical examination for pilots. Due to this fact (but not only this, of course) I am going to learn abroad. Nobody can give exact answer to the question whether it is possible or not to validate later a foreign license in Russia without the necessity to pass through our med checks. Then it is important to know, how easy it is to find a pilot job in another country, if you are not a resident. My impression is that it is easier for pilots, rather than for people of other professions, but I may be wrong...Also would you be able to somehow estimate the percentage of airlines which have certain height requirements above mine? I know, for example, BA require above 157 sm. Does it mean I will not suit with 156 or is 1 sm not so important? And of course, apart from official things I have to find out if it is really physically possible to operate an aircraft with such a height.
Ffuf, many questions, aren't there? I have to clarify everything though...
I will be very thankful for any information you can provide!
 
Longitude
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Thu Nov 26, 2009 4:15 pm

Sorry, just found out that 5' ft 2 in doesn't equal 156 sm. So, my true height is 156 sm.  Smile
 
CanadianNorth
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Thu Nov 26, 2009 7:41 pm

I've seen quite a variety of sizes in our cockpits, so I'm sure the limitations for airliners are pretty reasonable. I'm not a pilot myself, but as maintenance I'm about 6'4" / 193cm and have no trouble fitting in our HS748s and 737s. Takes me a minute to get in and out without hitting anything (although if my a** was on fire or something I'm sure I could speed it up some), but once in the seat I fit just fine.


CanadianNorth
What could possibly go wrong?
 
rwessel
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Nov 27, 2009 7:18 am



Quoting Longitude (Reply 33):
Sorry, just found out that 5' ft 2 in doesn't equal 156 sm. So, my true height is 156 sm.

Out of curiosity, isn't the Russian version of “centi,” “санти”? Why “sm” instead of “cm”?
 
Longitude
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Nov 27, 2009 11:32 am



Quoting Rwessel (Reply 35):
Out of curiosity, isn't the Russian version of “centi,” “санти”? Why “sm” instead of “cm”?

Yes, you're definitely right. Just "cm" looked for me as "km" )
 
Longitude
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Nov 27, 2009 11:34 am



Quoting CanadianNorth (Reply 34):
I've seen quite a variety of sizes in our cockpits, so I'm sure the limitations for airliners are pretty reasonable.

Why then do they all have different requirements for same fleets?
Some of the pilot guys I know say that even with 100 cm (Rwessel  Wink) one can fly 777 with no trouble.
 
Longitude
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Fri Nov 27, 2009 11:35 am

Somebody told me the Airbus seats had been designed to accomodate somewhat 90% of people in terms of height. Since then I am trying to find the height range for 90% of people, but with no success so far  Smile)))))))))))))
 
jetstar
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Nov 28, 2009 1:30 am

I am 6’ 3” and getting in and out of the seats in the Lockheed JetStar required a little contortion act, especially to avoid hitting the pressurization controller which was centered and protruded out from the overhead panel. I think I still have the impression of the altitude control knob in my skull from all the times I banged my head into this knob.

I tried to sit in the seat of a Model 24 LearJet one time and I could barely fit in, The Chief Pilot of this LearJet was 6”5”, but somehow he managed to get in and out of the seat and also fly the airplane without his knees getting in the way of the controls.

I also knew of a petite female JetStar captain, her only problem was she could not activate all the thrust reversers at the same time because her hand was to small to grab all 4 of the reverser levers, so she could only pull up 2 at a time, I heard that the first officer or co-captain used to operate the thrust reversers for her.

I would like to know she got her type rating, lets see, female pilot, male flight examiner, Hmmm, I wonder.

JetStar
 
Longitude
Topic Author
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:44 pm

Jetstar,

I didn't get the sense of this your sentence Smile

Quoting Jetstar (Reply 39):
I would like to know she got her type rating, lets see, female pilot, male flight examiner, Hmmm, I wonder.

Are you saying you don't believe she could get a type rating with the problem she had with reversers without any additional circumstances  Smile?
I have a normal hand, even with my 156  Smile
 
Longitude
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:47 pm

By the way, which type of aircraft did she fly? I used to fly Jetstar, but that was before my aviation life, so I don't know the type  Smile...Was it A320?
 
jetstar
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sat Nov 28, 2009 9:57 pm



Quoting Longitude (Reply 41):
By the way, which type of aircraft did she fly? I used to fly Jetstar, but that was before my aviation life, so I don't know the type ...Was it A320?

It was not the airline Jetstar, but the 4 engine Lockheed JetStar corporate jet.

Quoting Longitude (Reply 40):
Are you saying you don't believe she could get a type rating with the problem she had with reversers without any additional circumstances ?
I have a normal hand, even with my 156

I am not even suggesting she did anything improper to get her JetStar rating, I should have put lol after my statement.

In case you haven’t noticed, women’s hands are usually smaller then men’s and I said she was petite, which means small sized.

In actuality, I doubt she even had to use the reversers to get her type rating, the JetStar, like all other reverser equipped airplanes are certified to land without reversers, but to deploy the 4 reversers on the JetStar required a normal sized women's hand. In her case if she needed to deploy the reversers she could not grab all four at the same time, the best she could do was deploy 3 reversers. But you cannot deploy just 3, this would give you asymmetrical thrust and would put you into the giggly weeds real quick, so she could have used #2 & 3 reversers, or none at all.

On the JetStar in particular, to deploy the reversers, you had to pull more in an upward motion and lift the reverser levers upward than pulling them back like the power levers, so you needed a wide grip on the reverser levers. I would rest the palm of my hand on top of the power levers, which were back in the idle position and using the palm of my hand as the fulcrum, it would grab the reverse lever knobs with 4 fingers and pull them up, a person with a small hand, like a petite women could not do this, especially #4 with their pinky, and there also was some friction on the reverser levers, which was not adjustable so it took a little force to raise the reverser levers. A women with a larger hand should not have had any problems with the reversers on the JetStar

It is a different world out there today, and I’m sure that Boeing and Airbus and all the other aircraft manufacturers design their airplanes so that petite women can operate all the controls safely. I doubt that when Kelly Johnson designed the Lockheed JetStar he was thinking about women flying the airplane and took their size into consideration.

JetStar
 
Longitude
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sun Nov 29, 2009 10:40 am



Quoting Jetstar (Reply 42):
It was not the airline Jetstar, but the 4 engine Lockheed JetStar corporate jet.

Ahh, ok, got it! Smile

Thanks for a detailed explanation on how the thrust reverser levers are operated on the JetStar, interesting to know. Yes, modern aircrafts should be designed to accommodate short people, however many companies do require pilots to be at least 1.60 cm...
 
jetstar
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sun Nov 29, 2009 9:29 pm



Quoting Longitude (Reply 43):
Yes, modern aircrafts should be designed to accommodate short people, however many companies do require pilots to be at least 1.60 cm...

This may apply to airlines and the military, but not to corporations who own their own aircraft, its up to them who they hire. Also I do not know of any Federal Regulation pertaining to a minimum height requirement to operate an airplane, but I am sure there is a overall regulation pertaining to being able to operate the controls safely.

JetStar
 
Longitude
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Sun Nov 29, 2009 10:07 pm

As far as I know there is no such a common regilation for airlines in the US or Europe, for example. It is their business whom they take. But they have a right to state what they want to see in pilots. So, some of them do state height limits, some - do not.
 
Viscount724
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RE: Height Restrictions For Pilots

Mon Nov 30, 2009 12:18 am



Quoting Longitude (Reply 45):
It is their business whom they take. But they have a right to state what they want to see in pilots. So, some of them do state height limits, some - do not.

LX says they want pilot applicants to be from 160 cm to 198 cm (5 ft. 3 in. to 6 ft. 6 in.).

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