Head of FAA to testify before U.S. House of Representatives

According to sources, the head of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is set to testify before the U.S. House of Representatives on February 3 regarding the deployment of the new C-Band for 5G and its impact on aviation safety.

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is expected to hear from FAA Administrator Steve Dickson along with aviation and wireless industry officials, including the head of Airlines for America, cargo airlines, and Aerospace Industries Association, which represents airplane manufacturers.

“I hope Administrator Dickson and all of our witnesses come prepared for a robust discussion about how the goal of a successful 5G deployment can co-exist with the safety of our skies,” said Peter DeFazio, the Committee Chairman in a statement.

Radio altimeters, which provide data on height above ground for bad-weather landings to aircrafts, could see interference from 5G, said the FAA.

Last week, major U.S. passenger and cargo carriers warned of a potential “catastrophic” aviation crisis and said that without a delay of 5G deployment near some airports “the vast majority of the traveling and shipping public will essentially be grounded.”

“We are now seeing the operational impacts to airline travel,” said Committee Chairman Peter DeFazio. “All interested parties must come together to address these impacts and implement long-term solutions that will increase safety and reduce disruptions for affected airports.”

Airplane models which have been cleared for altimeters issues include Boeing 717, 737, 747, 757, 767, 777, 787 MD-10/-11; Airbus A300, A310, A319, A220, A320, A321, A330, A340, A350, A380; Embraer 120, 170, and 190 regional jets; All CL-600/CRJ regional jets; DHC-8 and ATR turboprops.

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