FAA Safety Chief to Step Down

FAA associate administrator for aviation safety, Nicholas Sabatini, will retire on 3 January after 30 years with the agency.Replacing Sabatini effective 1 November will be Peggy Gilligan, currently the deputy associate administrator for aviation safety. Sabatini is responsible for a workforce of more than 6,800 federal employees who handle the certification of aircraft, pilots and mechanics and maintenance operations as well as the safety and certification oversight for the more than 7,000 commercial airlines and air operators in the US.

Widely regarded as key figure in the modernizing the FAA workforce and introducing new technologies like enhanced and synthetic vision into the cockpits of certified aircraft, Sabatini’s organzization was also criticized recently for allowing what some US lawmakers said were too-close relationships between regulators and airlines, an accusation spelled out in congressional hearings in April over airworthiness directive abuses by Southwest Airlines.

 Also retiring from the FAA on 3 January will be FAA acting deputy administrator, Ruth Leverenz, in the position since September 2007.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news