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    Aero-TV's Conversation With P.A.S.S. (Part One)

    Aero-TV Network

    by Aero-TV Network

    Interesting Observations From Folks On The "Front Lines" Of Our Aviation Infrastructure

    At the 2007 AOPA Expo, staffers and officials from P.A.S.S. caught up with ANN Editor-In-Chief, and let him know in no uncertain terms that they wanted to get a few things on the record.

    P.A.S.S? What the heck is that? Isn't that what you were always missing when you caught in the halls, between clases, back in school?

    Not exactly... this "P.A.S.S." is somewhat better and far more interesting.

    The Professional Aviation Safety Specialists (PASS) is the union that represents more than 11,000 employees of the FAA and DoD. The members of P.A.S.S. are "dedicated to certifying the safety and the efficiency of the National Airspace System (NAS); maintaining and supporting this nation’s air traffic control system with the utmost professionalism; and ensuring the integrity, the reliability, and the safety of the commercial and general aviation industries." Accordijng to P.A.S.S. officials, "Whenever you fly, the work our members do behind the scenes helps you get there safely."

    So, during the Expo, several coincerned P.A.S.S. officials talked to Jim Campbell about just what it is they advocate and do. Professional Airway System Specialist National Assistant, Kathleen Carpenter, explained that she belongs to a group of FAA employees who maintain, certify and repair technical systems such as navigation aids, surveillance, automation, and communications systems.

    Current issues being voiced center on the breakdown in communication between PASS and the FAA regarding decisions about the "Fix on Fail" approach. Facilities across the nation are lacking the support and funding from FAA legacy systems to repair such seemingly simple problems as holes in floors, mold, and the plastic protecting technical systems from the elements.

    They noted that this is considered less of a turf-war and more of a level of pride and professionalism, accoridng to comments by Mark Dunlap, Chair of the National Legislative Committee. ...