FAA might finally get a system upgrade.

After the FAA system failure fiasco that caused thousands of flight cancellations earlier this month, critics in the industry have been pressing for more stringent regulations, and it looks like they might be getting just what they are asking for.

A proposal for a task force that will examine how the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) communicates with airline pilots entering US airspace has been approved by the United States Travel Association. As a reaction to the FAA’s recent half-day crisis, there is an urgency that the NOTAM Improvement Act of 2023 bill be passed by the House and sent to the Senate.

Among the members of the task force would be pilots, executives in the airline and airport industries, union officials, air traffic controllers, and aviation and computer systems experts.

What could this mean for passengers? 

To create a better flying experience for all passengers, the bill proposes significant modernized upgrades to the US air traffic system to eliminate incidents like the one earlier this month and ensure flight disruptions are prevented.

Tori Emerson Barnes, President of Public Affairs and Policy for the USTA, shared, “Americans deserve a travel experience that is seamless and secure from end to end, and our elected leaders must take immediate steps to course correct years of government inaction. We thank Rep. Stauber for introducing this important legislation to create a task force of experts and encourage the bill’s passage.”

Until this bill is passed, some like United Airlines CEO, Scott Kirby expect airlines won’t be able to handle all the flights they are planning to operate this year, resulting in more travel disruptions for travelers. Outside of the FAA’s outdated technology, airlines are also dealing with a labor shortage, flight volume, and anticipated growth. All of which is a lot to juggle. 

This bill comes as Congress prepares to reauthorize the FAA’s funding for five years.

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