werdywerd
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FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Fri Nov 01, 2019 2:18 am

CNN)The Federal Aviation Administration is set to allow pilots with insulin-treated diabetes to apply to fly commercial airliners, according to a Department of Transportation official who spoke with CNN.


https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/31/politics ... 1572572147

This is great news! With all of the advancements in diabetes management the days of Diabetic randomly passing out are long gone. We have real-time blood glucose meters that alarm way before blood sugar gets too low to properly function and it's not longer an issue.

This is the second huge regulation that was rolled back by the current US Admin for Diabetics that makes common sense and helps people get jobs. First one was for Diabetic Truck drivers and now Diabetic pilots. Great move forward and keeping with advancements in modern medicine!
 
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SierraPacific
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Fri Nov 01, 2019 2:53 am

Awesome to see

Nobody should have their dream squashed because they were born with an easily manageable condition.
 
AntonioMartin
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Fri Nov 01, 2019 3:11 am

Oh man I wish I was 20! Id been waiting for this for a long time and even wrote a couple letters to the faa about this
 
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TWA772LR
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Fri Nov 01, 2019 3:22 am

Awesome news! Hopefully they loosen up the restrictions for what I have!
When wasn't America great?


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dr1980
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sat Nov 02, 2019 2:49 am

Interesting, I’ve been a type 1 diabetic since I was 3...I looked into what i would take for me to even get a recreational license in Canada and it was so restrictive that it seemed unrealistic for any diabetic to achieve. I’ll be keeping a close eye on this. Who knows, my dream of flying may still be remotely possible.
Dave/CYHZ
 
speedbird52
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sat Nov 02, 2019 3:02 am

That is awesome news
 
Luftymatt
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:59 am

[threeid][/threeid]
SierraPacific wrote:
Awesome to see

Nobody should have their dream squashed because they were born with an easily manageable condition.


100% agree. There needs to be more common sense in the issue of class one medical certificates.
chase the sun
 
Aceskywalker
Posts: 74
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 2:53 pm

Shame. This makes flying more risky. I said the same thing when the FAA allowed people with depression on SSRIs to fly even as a private personal use case.

Flying should be reserved for the most fit of society - physically and mentally. You should have no mental health problems ever. Risk factors like high glucose, cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity should be grounding factors. Same for glasses, you should have 20/20 natural vision.

I also advocate for some of the strictness of pilot licensing to make its way onto the ground.
 
Airontario
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 3:04 pm

Aceskywalker wrote:
Shame. This makes flying more risky. I said the same thing when the FAA allowed people with depression on SSRIs to fly even as a private personal use case.

Flying should be reserved for the most fit of society - physically and mentally. You should have no mental health problems ever. Risk factors like high glucose, cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity should be grounding factors. Same for glasses, you should have 20/20 natural vision.

I also advocate for some of the strictness of pilot licensing to make its way onto the ground.


You forgot the /s
 
WaywardMemphian
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 3:12 pm

werdywerd wrote:
CNN)The Federal Aviation Administration is set to allow pilots with insulin-treated diabetes to apply to fly commercial airliners, according to a Department of Transportation official who spoke with CNN.


https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/31/politics ... 1572572147

This is great news! With all of the advancements in diabetes management the days of Diabetic randomly passing out are long gone. We have real-time blood glucose meters that alarm way before blood sugar gets too low to properly function and it's not longer an issue.

This is the second huge regulation that was rolled back by the current US Admin for Diabetics that makes common sense and helps people get jobs. First one was for Diabetic Truck drivers and now Diabetic pilots. Great move forward and keeping with advancements in modern medicine!


As someone with Type 2 Diabetes I applaud this admin for this. I haven't had an AIC over 6 in three years after my diagnosis and righting my diet after initial diagnosis.
 
johns624
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 3:27 pm

Aceskywalker wrote:
Shame. This makes flying more risky. I said the same thing when the FAA allowed people with depression on SSRIs to fly even as a private personal use case.

Flying should be reserved for the most fit of society - physically and mentally. You should have no mental health problems ever. Risk factors like high glucose, cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity should be grounding factors. Same for glasses, you should have 20/20 natural vision.

I also advocate for some of the strictness of pilot licensing to make its way onto the ground.
They should also ban overly arrogant types. They can endanger lives by thinking that they can handle anything...
 
KlimaBXsst
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 3:29 pm

“It makes me feel good you feel good too, “ said the boy who lost the race but got the trophy all the same.

If data supports a low risk threshold to aviation even in 24/7, reduced quality sleep, and not the greatest opportunity for awesome nutrition operations, then so be it.

Just don’t let humans forget to take their meds as humans do, or forget that analysts may have an agenda or fail, and leave out other chunks of real world data that impact safe aviation operations.
Aesthetically the A 340 got it right!
 
pdp
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 3:32 pm

johns624 wrote:
Aceskywalker wrote:
Shame. This makes flying more risky. I said the same thing when the FAA allowed people with depression on SSRIs to fly even as a private personal use case.

Flying should be reserved for the most fit of society - physically and mentally. You should have no mental health problems ever. Risk factors like high glucose, cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity should be grounding factors. Same for glasses, you should have 20/20 natural vision.

I also advocate for some of the strictness of pilot licensing to make its way onto the ground.
They should also ban overly arrogant types. They can endanger lives by thinking that they can handle anything...


One could argue that someone with a condition they are aware of and can actively mitigate might actually be safer as they k ow their own limits better...

I'm very mildly dyspraxic, and I'm hoping that it won't be a blocker to me getting at least a PPL and IMC rating. I know where my weaknesses are and usually just practicing a little more than normal gets me the same result as others.
 
smokeybandit
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:22 pm

Aceskywalker wrote:
Shame. This makes flying more risky. I said the same thing when the FAA allowed people with depression on SSRIs to fly even as a private personal use case.

Flying should be reserved for the most fit of society - physically and mentally. You should have no mental health problems ever. Risk factors like high glucose, cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity should be grounding factors. Same for glasses, you should have 20/20 natural vision.

I also advocate for some of the strictness of pilot licensing to make its way onto the ground.


There'd be like 5 pilots left to fly.
 
N757ST
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:31 pm

Aceskywalker wrote:
Shame. This makes flying more risky. I said the same thing when the FAA allowed people with depression on SSRIs to fly even as a private personal use case.

Flying should be reserved for the most fit of society - physically and mentally. You should have no mental health problems ever. Risk factors like high glucose, cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity should be grounding factors. Same for glasses, you should have 20/20 natural vision.

I also advocate for some of the strictness of pilot licensing to make its way onto the ground.


Well, good thing you don’t make decisions for the FAA.

Signed, a commercial airline pilot.
 
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longhauler
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:41 pm

dr1980 wrote:
Interesting, I’ve been a type 1 diabetic since I was 3...I looked into what i would take for me to even get a recreational license in Canada and it was so restrictive that it seemed unrealistic for any diabetic to achieve. I’ll be keeping a close eye on this. Who knows, my dream of flying may still be remotely possible.

This is interesting, as Transport Canada has allowed diabetics to hold an Airline Transport Pilot Licence for at least 10 years. We have several flying for us right now.

There are restrictions, of course, namely a basically clear history. Also, the pilot must use a Transport Canada issued glucose monitor that is “locked”, (results can not be altered) and it is sent in monthly for assessment.

It is (and was) ground breaking, but it is manageable.
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
TheOldDude
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 7:29 pm

longhauler wrote:
dr1980 wrote:
Interesting, I’ve been a type 1 diabetic since I was 3...I looked into what i would take for me to even get a recreational license in Canada and it was so restrictive that it seemed unrealistic for any diabetic to achieve. I’ll be keeping a close eye on this. Who knows, my dream of flying may still be remotely possible.

This is interesting, as Transport Canada has allowed diabetics to hold an Airline Transport Pilot Licence for at least 10 years. We have several flying for us right now.

There are restrictions, of course, namely a basically clear history. Also, the pilot must use a Transport Canada issued glucose monitor that is “locked”, (results can not be altered) and it is sent in monthly for assessment.

It is (and was) ground breaking, but it is manageable.


This is very enlightening. It provides real world data for risk measurement. That's much better than the knee jerk and data free reaction of "only someone without condition X should be allowed to fly". Presumably the FAA spoke to Transport Canada before making their decision.
 
spudsmac
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:32 pm

SierraPacific wrote:
Awesome to see

Nobody should have their dream squashed because they were born with an easily manageable condition.


It's not about squashing anyone's dreams, it's about protecting the public. I always say there's no room to worry about hurt feelings in aviation because it is a dangerous industry if you do not respect it. Life isn't fair and it's not worth worrying about squashing someone's dreams when there's a chance of increased risk to innocent people. That being said I am glad to see there be progression on this, but let's not say it's unfair to someone to increase the risk to others.
 
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SierraPacific
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sun Nov 03, 2019 11:46 pm

spudsmac wrote:
SierraPacific wrote:
Awesome to see

Nobody should have their dream squashed because they were born with an easily manageable condition.


It's not about squashing anyone's dreams, it's about protecting the public. I always say there's no room to worry about hurt feelings in aviation because it is a dangerous industry if you do not respect it. Life isn't fair and it's not worth worrying about squashing someone's dreams when there's a chance of increased risk to innocent people. That being said I am glad to see there be progression on this, but let's not say it's unfair to someone to increase the risk to others.


How many times has a Canadian airline had an incident because of a diabetic pilot?

They have had this common-sense reform for a decade now. Diabetes properly managed with a healthcare professional poses practically zero safety risk to commercial aviation operations.
 
dr1980
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Wed Nov 06, 2019 10:54 pm

longhauler wrote:
dr1980 wrote:
Interesting, I’ve been a type 1 diabetic since I was 3...I looked into what i would take for me to even get a recreational license in Canada and it was so restrictive that it seemed unrealistic for any diabetic to achieve. I’ll be keeping a close eye on this. Who knows, my dream of flying may still be remotely possible.

This is interesting, as Transport Canada has allowed diabetics to hold an Airline Transport Pilot Licence for at least 10 years. We have several flying for us right now.

There are restrictions, of course, namely a basically clear history. Also, the pilot must use a Transport Canada issued glucose monitor that is “locked”, (results can not be altered) and it is sent in monthly for assessment.

It is (and was) ground breaking, but it is manageable.


I could be wrong but my understanding is that those who have been able to hold commercial licenses in Canada with diabetes to this point were already licensed before being diagnosed, and the idea of having someone diagnosed before licensing is new? I saw this on Facebook today about a Jazz first officer who is a type 1 diabetic operating his first flight, purported to be the first in Canada?

https://www.facebook.com/georgecanyon/p ... 1903678606

I went back and re-read what I could find online about diabetes and TC medicals and I think I misunderstood when I read about this in the past...I read the blood sugar guidelines that are meant for inflight and thought they applied all the time, ie no blood sugars below 6.0 or above 15.0 ever...no diabetic is so good that they can meet that all the time but doing so while operating the aircraft is easily doable with proper planning and monitoring.

I’m going to go see a CAME and see if I can pass the cat 4 (recreational) or cat 3 (private), it would certainly be amazing to pursue this...the dream may be alive :)
Dave/CYHZ
 
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longhauler
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Thu Nov 07, 2019 1:44 am

dr1980 wrote:
I could be wrong but my understanding is that those who have been able to hold commercial licenses in Canada with diabetes to this point were already licensed before being diagnosed, and the idea of having someone diagnosed before licensing is new? I saw this on Facebook today about a Jazz first officer who is a type 1 diabetic operating his first flight, purported to be the first in Canada?

It is an interesting twist of semantics, but I would be surprised if Transport Canada makes that distinction. Perhaps that was the case for the Gentleman you cited, but even that is a little curious.

You see, to be a Jazz First Officer, he would have had to have held at least a Commercial Pilot Licence. And holding that requires certain flying experience, including flight tests. So it is unlikely his "first flight" was flying with Jazz.

To give you can example of time lines, the person I was citing actually was the first Airline Transport Pilot with Type 1 diabetes. But his history started when he was an Air Canada DC-9 First Officer and the diabetes was detected during a recurrent medical in the 1980s. At that point, he no longer held a licence. Period. With no other options, he became a simulator instructor for Cathay Pacific Airways and held that position for at least 10 years ... with no licence. (Sim instructors do not have to be licenced).

With research, patience and the assistance of Transport Canada, he was able to achieve the licence with the restrictions I mentioned above. But that really is the question and it's a bit like the chicken and the egg. Namely, in order to "prove" he was safe, he had to be flying, and to fly, he had to have a valid licence. So at some point, Transport Canada gave him back his licence when he held none before and this was done before he started flying again. And ... this was done at least 15 years ago!

So while this Jazz First Officer may have been the "first" to start from scratch, I doubt very much that holding a previous licence in the case of the DC-9 First Officer gave him any added benefits or assistance .... as in both cases, it would be granting a licence to one not already holding one.

I would suggest you contact the Air Canada Pilots Association. (acpa.ca) They were there as all this was occurring. They might be able to point you in the direction of an Aeromedical Physician that is familiar with the process. Also, you will see two names in the Facebook page you quoted ... Steve Steele and Ed MacDonald. Hint hint ... through ACPA see if you can contact them, it will be a help.

Best of luck!
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
dr1980
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Thu Nov 07, 2019 2:59 am

Thanks so much, I appreciate your insights and advice, I’ll certainly have a look at contacting ACPA!
Dave/CYHZ
 
dr1980
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Thu Nov 07, 2019 3:09 am

One thing I was curious about, if Transport Canada has been allowing diabetics to fly commercially for some time, and the FAA is just now allowing it, would a diabetic Canadian commercial pilot have been allowed to fly to the US or would they be restricted to domestic flying in the past?
Dave/CYHZ
 
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longhauler
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Thu Nov 07, 2019 3:05 pm

dr1980 wrote:
One thing I was curious about, if Transport Canada has been allowing diabetics to fly commercially for some time, and the FAA is just now allowing it, would a diabetic Canadian commercial pilot have been allowed to fly to the US or would they be restricted to domestic flying in the past?


When a country is allowed flight into another, the two governing bodies normally allow the other country's pilots to fly under their own licencing rules. This is the case with TC/FAA, as there are quite a few differences between the two.

For example ... duty day rules are probably the biggest differences. Canadian crews are allowed to fly into the US using the pathetic maximum duty days as outlined and sanctioned by Canada's Minister of Transport. An AC crew can fly YYZ-LAX-YYZ where an AA crew can not fly LAX-YYZ-LAX!

In the past, examples were that maximum age was different between th two, 60 for the US, 65 for Canada. Or, US First Officers at one time did not even have to hold a type rating on the aircraft they were flying!

So, it would be unlikely that the FAA would cause any trouble with a Canadian diabetic pilot flying into the US, on a Canadian registered aircraft.
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
DALMD80
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Thu Nov 07, 2019 3:15 pm

Good to hear.
2 wrongs don't make a right, but 2 Wrights made an airplane, and look at the miracles we have today!
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Thu Nov 07, 2019 4:04 pm

There are also Continuous Glucose Monitors, CGMs. Wearing one for several of hours or during some flights really would be a tell all. And yes a person could maintain between 4 and 7 (70-120 apprx) easily. When anesthesiologists have complained BGs are too low, just say, tell what you want numbers to be, we will do it. Airlines can tell a diabetic pilot what sort of numbers they want, and a dedicated person just does it.

It is also a fiction that all or most diabetics lose consciousness at lower numbers. On diabetic blogs any number of people have noted they function well with BGs as low as 1.7 ( 30, US).
Buffet: the airline business...has eaten up capital...like..no other (business)
 
dr1980
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Thu Nov 07, 2019 7:03 pm

Thanks longhauler, I hadn’t thought of all the other differences that exist beyond medical.
Dave/CYHZ
 
N1120A
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sat Nov 09, 2019 2:13 am

werdywerd wrote:

This is the second huge regulation that was rolled back by the current US Admin for Diabetics that makes common sense and helps people get jobs. First one was for Diabetic Truck drivers and now Diabetic pilots. Great move forward and keeping with advancements in modern medicine!


This has nothing to do with the current US administration. This is the product of years of study since Third Class medical reform in 1996 allowed special issuances for diabetics, as well as increasingly sophisticated technology and understanding of diabetes. The FAA has been reforming medical criteria for quite some time, with BasicMed being a huge step on the GA side and now allowing special issuances up to the First Class level for insulin dependent diabetics.
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
 
werdywerd
Topic Author
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sat Nov 09, 2019 3:43 am

N1120A wrote:
werdywerd wrote:

This is the second huge regulation that was rolled back by the current US Admin for Diabetics that makes common sense and helps people get jobs. First one was for Diabetic Truck drivers and now Diabetic pilots. Great move forward and keeping with advancements in modern medicine!


This has nothing to do with the current US administration. This is the product of years of study since Third Class medical reform in 1996 allowed special issuances for diabetics, as well as increasingly sophisticated technology and understanding of diabetes. The FAA has been reforming medical criteria for quite some time, with BasicMed being a huge step on the GA side and now allowing special issuances up to the First Class level for insulin dependent diabetics.


This isn't a political post, just factual.

One of the items the current POTUS ran on was reversing common sense regulations. He instructed all agencies to provide a list of regulations for rollback or modification. The DOT and FAA brought forward these Diabetic related rules which have been stuck in a "Being worked on" state for years (as you stated). They finally broke the log jam this year to get them done.

Like him or hate him, he helped get these two regulations changed through his administration.
 
atcdan
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Mon Nov 11, 2019 2:49 am

I’ve had a third class FAA medical certificate since 2012, with a special consideration for type one diabetes. As a result of the FAA requiring that I monitor my blood sugar before and during my duty day, and that I have to follow up with my personal physician every three months and provide the A1c results to the regional FAA flight surgeon, my A1c has dropped to remain between 6.5-6.8, which is very good for a type one diabetic. (Last I was told is their disqualifying A1c is 9.0, 5.9 is considered non-diabetic).

I am required to have immediate access to fast acting glucose while working traffic in the event I need to treat a low, but it’s extraordinarily rare that I get low anymore with the pump and CGM tech that’s available now.

I have been turned away from military service, a commercial drivers license, and law enforcement due to type one diabetes, I’m planning on going for at least a PPL in the next year knowing that now it could turn into an investment in my future.

Again for all those doubting the FAA, the number one thing they are trying to avoid at all costs is liability in terms of litigation, which is why the medical requirements for type one diabetes, as well as many other conditions, are so onerous.
Tower Controller
VNY, DFW, LAX
All posts are my own opinions and do not represent my employer or any government entity in any way!
 
N1120A
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Re: FAA to allow pilots with diabetes to fly commercial jets

Sat Nov 23, 2019 10:50 am

werdywerd wrote:
N1120A wrote:
werdywerd wrote:

This is the second huge regulation that was rolled back by the current US Admin for Diabetics that makes common sense and helps people get jobs. First one was for Diabetic Truck drivers and now Diabetic pilots. Great move forward and keeping with advancements in modern medicine!


This has nothing to do with the current US administration. This is the product of years of study since Third Class medical reform in 1996 allowed special issuances for diabetics, as well as increasingly sophisticated technology and understanding of diabetes. The FAA has been reforming medical criteria for quite some time, with BasicMed being a huge step on the GA side and now allowing special issuances up to the First Class level for insulin dependent diabetics.


This isn't a political post, just factual.

One of the items the current POTUS ran on was reversing common sense regulations. He instructed all agencies to provide a list of regulations for rollback or modification. The DOT and FAA brought forward these Diabetic related rules which have been stuck in a "Being worked on" state for years (as you stated). They finally broke the log jam this year to get them done.

Like him or hate him, he helped get these two regulations changed through his administration.


No, sorry, incorrect. This is, once again, something that has been in the works for years and is the product of that, not some waiving of a magic wand by Donald Trump.
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss

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