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Archive-name: Miscell/milehigh.txt


Archive-title: Regulation of Mile High Club Operations

                          DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

                         Federal Aviation Administration

                                 14 CFR Part 61

                 (Docket No. 75487345, Notice No. 88-523040306)




        ACTION: Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM)


        SUMMARY: This notice proposes to require additional qualifica-

        tions and testing before a certificated pilot may engage or 

        continue to engage in Mile High Club Operations (MHCO) while also 

        exercising the privileges of a pilot certificate.


        DATES: Comments should be received before December 31, 1999.


        ADDRESSES: Comments may be mailed or delivered in sextuplicate 

        to: Federal Aviation Administration, Office of Chief Counsel, 

        Attention: Rules Docket (AGC-204), Docket No. 75487345, 800 

        Independence Avenue SW, Washington DC 20591. Comments may be 

        examined in the Rules Docket weekdays, except Federal holidays, 

        between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.




        Need for Rulemaking


           Under the provisions of the East Chitlin Switch, Kansas, Wheat 

        Silo Subsidy Act (P.L. 100-872398-A), Congress has mandated the 

        FAA to regulate the activities of the formerly unregulated Mile 

        High Club (MHC).  Under present rules, anything accomplished at 

        an altitude of one statute mile (5,280 feet) above ground level 

        (AGL), regardless of the degree of difficulty or the level of 

        expertise demanded, earns a certificated pilot a scroll illus-

        trated by Milton Caniff and a three-color bumper sticker.  

        Through a procedure of self-regulation, the organization has set 

        forth requirements that activities take place at an altitude of 

        at least 5,280 feet above ground level to prevent Denver pilots 

        from messing around on the ramp. Although the organization has 

        adopted rigid admission requirements for its pilot members, a 

        recent National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) report dis-

        closed an accident in a light training aircraft (LTA) caused by 

        pilot error in the form of disorientation of a student pilot (sex 

        unknown) after the Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) (sex un-

        known) attempted to introduce the student to a maneuver not 

        included in the MHC syllabus.  Similarly, the crash of a corpo-

        rate-owned Learjet in western Pennsylvania was thought to have 

        been caused by the absence of the crew from the cockpit at the 

        time the aircraft arrived in Pittsburgh. Further, evidence sug-

        gests that some hitherto unexplained accidents may have been due 

        to pilot fatique following Mile High Club Operations (MHCO) 

        activities. These accidents have amply demonstrated that there is 

        a compelling need for regulation of MHCO activities for the 

        protection of the public and property under the flight paths of 

        such aircraft.

        The FAA is proposing to expand the scope of Part 61 of the FARs 

        by the addition of paragraphs 61.300 through 61.305 to prohibit 

        the propositioning of any occupant of a certificated aircraft by 

        any licensed and current pilot who has not first demonstrated the 

        ability to execute the duties of pilot-in-command and/or co-pilot 

        to the satisfaction of an Operations Inspector or a designated 

        Pilot Examiner. It is further proposed to establish minimum 

        experience, age, and skill levels for the issuance of MCHO rat-

        ings to pilots' certificates. To ensure that a satisfactory level 

        of proficiency is maintained by certificated pilots possessing 

        MHCO ratings, it is proposed that biennial proficiency reviews be 



        Environmental Impact Statement


           The adoption of these regulations is not anticipated to have a 

        significant impact upon the environment including an impact upon 

        population pressures.


        Economic Impact Statement


           The proposed rules would not materially impact the economics 

        of MHCO activities, including those conducted for hire under Part 





        For the purposes of this NPRM, the following Definitions are 



        PILOT: An applicant for or possessor of a MCHO rating regardless 

        of sex, creed, color, political affiliation, proclivities, or 

        physical dimensions.


        CO-PILOT: Any person regardless of sex, creed, color, political 

        affiliation, proclivities, or physical dimensions assisting a 

        certificated, MHCO-rated pilot in carrying out MHCO activities.


        PASSENGER: Any reliable witness to an MHCO flight test who does 

        not actively participate.


        FLIGHT ENGINEER: Anyone other than a co-pilot who assists the 

        pilot in establishing the proper conditions for accomplishing the 

        minimum requirements of MHCO activities.


        AIRCRAFT: Any vehicle aloft suitable for MHCO activities. Does 

        not include automobiles or parachutists falling from high places.


        GLIDER: Anyone performing an MHCO activity entirely in mid-air 

        such as during the free-fall period of a parachute jump.


        HANG GLIDER: Glider with above-average equipment.


        SOLO FLIGHT: A practice session where the pilot is the sole 

        manipulator of the controls.


        DUAL FLIGHT: An MHCO activity during which the pilot uses both 



        AUTOPILOT AUTHORIZATION: An authorization from the FAA permitting 

        someone else to do it for a shy pilot.

        The Proposed Rule


           For reasons set forth above, the FAA is proposing to ammend 

        Part 61 of the Federal Aviation Regulations as follows:


        PART 61 - [AMMENDED]


             1. The authority citation for Part 61 continues to read as 



             Authority: Secs. 313(a), 314, 601, 602, Federal Aviation Act 

             of 1958, 49 U.S.C. 1354(a), 1355, 1421, 1422; sec. 6(c), 

             Department of Transportation Act, 49 U.S.S. 1655(2), unless 

             otherwise noted.


             2. Section 61 would be ammended by adding the following:


        61.300 An applicant for a Mile High Club Operations (MHCO) rating 

             on a pilot certificate must meet the following minimum 



             (a) The applicant must have reached his/her fifteenth birth-

             day or possess a deep voice.


             (b) The applicant must present a high school diploma or 

             equivalent indicating a gade of Failing or better, or a 

             notarized statement proving the applicant has compromised at 

             least one substitute teacher.


        61.301 An applicant for an MHCO rating must pass a written exami-

             nation on the following applicable aviation subjects:


             (a) Care, operation, a periodic maintenance of articulating 

             seats in certificated U.S. civil aircraft.


             (b) Basic anatomy and other considerations in selecting a 



             (c) Dangers associated with the destruction of aircraft 

             panel instruments by bare feet.


             61.302 An applicant for an MHCO rating will be tested on the 

             following maneuvers:


             (a) Takeoffs. Applicant will prepare the co-pilot for MHCO 



             (b) Stalls. Applicant will demonstrate any acceptable and 

             workable method of delay maneuvering to avoid premature 



             (c) Approaches. Applicant will demonstrate at least six (6) 

             precision or three (3) non-precision approaches to a co-

             pilot who does not suspect the purpose of the flight.


             (d) Soft Field Landings. Applicant will show proficiency in 

             selecting procedures to be utilized under soft conditions.


             (e) Short Field Landings. Applicant will show proficiency in 

             utilizing the proper procedures under short conditions.

             (f) Forced Landings. Applicant will will accomplish the 

             minimum MHCO activities despite co-pilot's objections.


             (g) On-pylon Eights. Applicant will select two prominent 

             landmarks and maneuver between them. If the co-pilot is not 

             endowed with sufficiently prominent landmarks, the activity 

             may be performed in a flight simulator approved by the 



             (h) In-flight Emergencies. Applicant will conduct a suitable 

             approach with the zipper jammed in the "up" position and 

             will demonstrate the smooth emergency extension of gear 

             before contact.


             (i) Holding Patterns. The Applicant will show proficiency in 

             covering all points of interest with only two hands.


             (j) Radio Navigation. Applicant will insert the radial into 

             the omnibearing selector and achieve station passage before 

             the "off" flag appears.


             (k) Back Course Approach. Not an approved procedure.


             (l) Diverting to an Alternate. Applicant will make an ap-

             proach to a passenger when it becomes obvious that the 

             original destination has gone below minimums because of a 

             cold front.


             (m) Maneuvering with an Inoperative Engine. Self explanato-



             (n) Weather Recognition. Applicant will readly identify cold 

             fronts and warm fronts with the cockpit lights inoperative.


             (o)Lost Communications Procedures. Applicant will show 

             proficiency in blocking the co-pilot's voice channel using a 

             broad-band antenna with great frequency.


        61.303 Proficiency Review.


             (a) No person may conduct MHCO activities unless, within the 

             preceding 24 months, that person has --


                  (1) Accomplished a proficiency review given to him, in 

                  an aircraft for which the person is rated, by an appro-

                  priately certificated flight instructor or other person 

                  designated by the Administrator who possesses a valid 

                  MHCO Inspection Authorization.


                  (2) Had his/her log book endorsed by the person con-

                  ducting the review certifying that the person has 

                  satisfactorily accomplished all the required activities 

                  of the review.


                  (3) However, a person who has, within the preceding 24 

                  months, satisfactorily completed an MHCO proficiency 

                  check conducted by the FAA or otherwise been satisfac-

                  torily screwed by the FAA need not accomplish the 

                  flight review required by this section.

        61.304 General Experience. No person may engage in MHCO activi-

             ties as pilot-in-command of an aircraft carrying passengers, 

             nor of an aircraft certificated for more than one required 

             pilot flight crewmember unless within the preceding 90 days 

             that person has satisfactorily carried out MHCO activities 

             and has made suitable log book entries attesting the fact.  

             This requirement does not apply to persons holding an air-

             line transport pilot certificate or to activities conducted 

             while operating under part 135 of this chapter.


        61.305 Instrument Experience. No person may engage in MHCO activ-

             ities unless, during the preceding 6 months, that person has 

             conducted MHCO operations in the immediate vicinity of cold 

             fronts and successfully logged at least 6 hours under actual 

             or simulated IFR conditions which involved at least six 




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