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I understand that there is a new pilot equipment list out at Air Canada that will require a massive number, (as near as I can tell about 1000) new hire pilots with many even going into the right seat of a 777.

Where are they going to get that number with any experience from. It can decimate the regionals. I doubt that there will be many coming from the RCAF. 

Also the problem becomes safety. If a low time pilot finds him or herself on a wide body getting 1 or 2 approaches a month how will he/she build up any actual piloting skills or are we content with them essentially be computer programmers. I can see more situations like what we saw on the Air France 330.

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Airlines and pilot unions had best put their heads together and find solutions to the lack of interest or the drive to innovating pilots (at least one of them) out of the cockpit will come fast and furious. The challenge will be the lifestyle expectations of the young generation of available workers. We may not like the fact that they want more work life balance in their younger years than we were willing to accept, but when it's a seller's market, the buyer has to innovate if they want to play.

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The ‘problem’ rests on 1 desk. Whoever decided that AC should maintain 4 years of (deficient) salary for FO/RP.

That combined with the career limited ‘bidding rights’ has AC left where it finds itself.

Nobody else does it the way AC does. Nobody.

What does that tell you?

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When the union's mindset at the table is "we don't negotiate for people who aren't here yet", it opens the door for the pay scale you are referring to.

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On 6/14/2022 at 1:33 PM, GDR said:

I understand that there is a new pilot equipment list out at Air Canada that will require a massive number, (as near as I can tell about 1000) new hire pilots with many even going into the right seat of a 777.

Where are they going to get that number with any experience from. It can decimate the regionals. I doubt that there will be many coming from the RCAF. 

Also the problem becomes safety. If a low time pilot finds him or herself on a wide body getting 1 or 2 approaches a month how will he/she build up any actual piloting skills or are we content with them essentially be computer programmers. I can see more situations like what we saw on the Air France 330.

I could be available to fill one of those positions… But not in the right seat (or RP seat). I don’t think my phone will be ringing anytime soon. 😄

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I don't have a list but it wouldn't surprise me if they were to hire a direct entry capt. on the A220 or possibly the A320.

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Meet True North Airways' newest — and youngest — commercial pilot

 

18-year old Isabel Fredette of Sudbury just finished the requirements for her commercial pilot's licence

 
angela-gemmill.JPG
Angela Gemmill · CBC News · Posted: Jun 16, 2022 6:00 AM ET | Last Updated: 4 hours ago
 
isabel-fredette.jpg
Isabel Fredette, 18, just completed the requirements for her commercial pilot's licence and will be working for True North Airways in Azilda. (Angela Gemmill/CBC)
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Isabel Fredette was 14 when she decided she wanted to become a pilot.

She was a passenger with her pilot dad, who was practicing touch-and-go landing manoeuvres through narrows, which is a restricted water passage.

"[The water] was kind of glassy, which is when the water is just perfect glass, there's straight reflection," the now 18 year-old Fredette said.

"I just knew at that point that I would become a pilot and it was going to happen."

"Just watching my dad and getting to see things from above — I just love that. And I felt like I needed to be able to do that."

The Sudbury woman recently passed all the requirements needed, and has obtained her commercial pilot's licence. She was 16 when she got her private licence to fly.

"Commercial just means you can get pay for hire, you could get a job flying," Fredette said.

 
Outdoor sign for True North Airways in Sudbury, which is a private charter airline which uses float planes to fly passengers.
The base for True North Airways, a private charter airline, is on Whitewater Lake in Azilda. It has seven commercial pilots. (Angela Gemmill/ CBC )

She is the newest pilot for True North Airlines, a private charter airline based on Whitewater Lake in Azilda. 

Co-owner Michelle Hayden said she had no hesitations hiring Fredette.

"She's always very self-led and she looks after things from start to finish, and she has a really thorough knowledge of airplanes, aircrafts and flying, so it's really nice to have somebody so confident to look after things, especially if I'm not here for the day," she said.

Fredette will mostly deliver supplies and check on guests staying at remote fishing resorts north of Sudbury. However, she may also provide training to other aspiring pilots who need flight time hours.

"I think her skills will speak for themselves," Hayden said, adding that some of the older generation might be harder to convince that a teenager can fly their plane. 

"I hope people look at Isabel and the accomplishments she has at such a young age and I hope that inspires more people to get into a field that generally isn't for super super young females," she added.

 
Teenaged, female pilot stands beside float plane she will be flying.
This is the Cessna float plane that Isabel Fredette will be flying this summer for True North Airlines. The 18-year old is the newest and youngest commercial pilot to fly for the company. (Angela Gemmill/CBC)

For Fredette there was a lot of hard work and effort that went into getting her pilot's licence.

She had to maintain high grades during ground school, which is the studying portion. That requires a written exam through Transport Canada. 

"There's flight training and you have to do so much time with an instructor and then by yourself and a certain amount of cross countries and distance." 

"For the commercial [licence] it's pretty much the same as the private [licence], just the margins for error are much much tighter. Which makes sense, you want everybody to be super proficient."

When she finished all the requirements for her private pilot's license she was just 16.

"But you can't hold a licence at 16, so they gave me a recreational permit which is ….more restrictions." She was given her private pilot's licence when she turned 17. Once she turned 18 she completed what she needed for the commercial pilot's licence.

This is actually Fredette's third summer working at True North Airways, as she was a dock hand before being hired as a pilot.

That first summer working there she didn't yet have her driver's licence, so she flew her dad's plane to get to work.

"I was flying to work for the whole summer," Fredette said. 

Licenced to fly

Fredette's flight training also allows her to land planes with wheels on land.

"I've actually went to Billy Bishop [Airport in downtown Toronto]

"Flying around the CN Tower is kind of cool."

Fredette said that it was during that flight that she was acutely aware of the difference between airspace in Toronto and airspace in Sudbury.

"Over there everything is controlled and you have to be aware of that," she said.

'Worth it when you get to go flying'

Her dream flight would be to Alaska 'on bushwheels, which are big tundra tires that you can land on sandbars.

"That seems like a really awesome adventure."

 And she has advice for anyone thinking about becoming a pilot.

"You're going to need to put in the work. The studying part is not fun at all. I can vouch for that. It's dry and boring," Fredette said. 

"But it's all worth it when you get to go flying"

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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8 hours ago, GDR said:

I don't have a list but it wouldn't surprise me if they were to hire a direct entry capt. on the A220 or possibly the A320.

I don't know if the same mindset still exists today but I remember when the Fredericton accident led to a decision there would never be DECs at Air Canada again.

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10 hours ago, GDR said:

I don't have a list but it wouldn't surprise me if they were to hire a direct entry capt. on the A220 or possibly the A320.

AC has more than enough qualified and competent pilots on staff to fill all current and most near term future CA vacancies.

The problem is AC also has a system of pay, schedule, and equipment bidding that - in many instances - makes that left seat bid unattractive, just as it has made year 1-4 WB FO bid unattractive.

So it will either be status quo or change. Grab a chair and some popcorn and just watch. No matter which was it goes it will be entertaining.

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  • 3 months later...

Mesa thinks it has a solution:

image.png.0a9cd659e461f1c5437942fd07a18323.png

 
Mesa Airlines offers accelerated path to 1,500 hours in effort to combat pilot shortage© Marketwatch
MARKET PULSE

Mesa Airlines said Thursday it has purchased 29 Pipistrel Alpha Trainer 2 aircraft, along with an option to acquire up to 75 more in the next year. The new fleet will be used to offer pilots an accelerated path to chalking up the 1,500 flight hours required to fly a commercial aircraft and aims to address the pilot shortage currently hurting U.S. airlines. "The pilot shortage could become a permanent feature of the airline industry if we don't get more aviators into the system," said Jonathan Ornstein, Mesa CEO, in a statement. "It is basic math. If there aren't enough trained pilots, customers suffer from loss of service and high-ticket prices." Data shows the airline and commercial industry need about 14,500 new pilots annually, but that it is meeting only about 44% of that need on average every year. "This is despite many airlines dramatically raising pilot pay," said the statement. "The shortage has forced airlines to reduce routes to many destinations and increase ticket prices, adding to overall inflation." Mesa shares were up 1.6% premarket, but are down 66% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has fallen 20%.

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Additional info from WSJ:

'Mesa will offer its light-sport planes to pilots for $25 an hour—significantly below the cost of renting a plane at most local airports—and will cover the costs with interest-free loans. Mesa said that pilots in the program will be able to fly up to 40 hours a week, which it said will allow them to build their time more quickly than they could otherwise. Mesa hopes its initiative will eventually accommodate over 1,000 pilots a year.

The new training program will operate in Florida starting in October and Mesa expects to expand to Arizona. Pilots in the program will get flight benefits and begin building seniority at Mesa and will have “priority status” for employment there once they are qualified. Pilots will have three years to repay the costs.'

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