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Nearly 5K pilots did not disclose medical issues that could keep them from flying

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The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) says nearly 5,000 pilots licensed to operate in the U.S. are under investigation for allegedly falsifying medical records to hide conditions that could potentially render them unfit to fly.

All of these pilots are military veterans who are accused of deliberately concealing significant health conditions or mental disorders from the FAA, despite reporting them to other officials to claim disability benefits, according to The Washington Post.

The discovery of these irregularities dates back over two years, with around 4,800 pilots having undergone investigation, half of which have been concluded, according to FAA spokesman Matthew Lehner.

Of these cases, approximately 60 pilots were deemed to pose a substantial threat to aviation safety and were consequently grounded during the review of their records.

For those cases still pending, Lehner noted that the majority of pilots could continue to operate safely while the reconciliation process was ongoing.

Around 600 of the pilots under scrutiny hold licences to operate passenger airlines, while the remainder possess commercial licences that enable them to work for cargo companies and other enterprises, an unnamed senior US official revealed.

This situation has brought attention to a long-criticised aspect of the FAA’s medical screening system for pilots, which relies on pilots to self-report their medical conditions.

Experts argue that this approach creates an incentive for veterans to hide their conditions from the FAA while potentially exaggerating them to the Veterans Affairs to secure disability benefits.

Aviation medical examiner Jerome Limoge emphasised this dual-sided approach, stating, “There are people out there who I think are trying to play both sides of the game… Some of it is almost stolen valour.”

In the course of the investigation, it was discovered that some contracted physicians working for the FAA had advised pilots to conceal their medical conditions.

In response to these revelations, the FAA’s Office of Aerospace Medicine has allocated $3.6 million to hire new medical experts and staff who will reassess certification records for the pilots implicated in the investigation.

While the existence of cases involving fraudulent reporting has been known for over two decades, renewed scrutiny arose globally after the 2015 incident in which Germanwings co-pilot Andreas Lubitz intentionally crashed a passenger plane into the French Alps.

It was later discovered that he had concealed his history of suicidal tendencies and depression from his employer.

The investigation gained further traction in 2019 when the FAA’s data was compared to VA records, revealing approximately 5,000 cases that raised concerns.

The Inspector General Michael’s office is currently determining whether any of the flagged pilots should face charges for defrauding the Veterans Affairs.

Court records indicate that at least ten pilots have been federally prosecuted for providing false information to the FAA since 2018, including former Army pilot Rick Mangini, aged 52.

Mangini, who has been grounded due to undisclosed sleep apnea, expressed his belief that the current crackdown disproportionately targets veterans, suggesting that non-veteran pilots often withhold medical conditions from the FAA without similar repercussions.

Approximately one-third of the 110,000 commercial pilots in the United States received their aviation training in the military, as per FAA records.

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Nintendo’s live presentation sets the stage to end the financial year with a bang

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PlayStation 5 has received a fresh Discord update, enhancing your social gaming experience. Connect with friends, join voice chats, and stay in the loop directly from your console.

Prepare for a thrilling showcase packed with game reveals, exclusive trailers, and updates on your favourite Nintendo franchises.

Whether you’re a fan of Mario, Zelda, or new indie titles, this Direct promises to deliver something for everyone. Mark your calendars and get ready for a gaming extravaganza!

Emily Leaney joins to discuss the latest.

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U.S. advocates for tobacco-style warning labels on social media platforms

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In an attempt to safeguard adolescent mental health, the U.S. Surgeon General has advocated for the implementation of warning labels on social media platforms.

On this episode of Ticker Hot Shots – U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy looks to implement warnings on social media platforms, Adobe get sued over hidden payments, a micro-EV slots into the urban market and the Pope attends G7 to warn over the use of AI.

Ticker’s Mike Loder and Veronica Dudo discuss. #featured #trending

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China & Australia are working to strengthen ties amid panda and wine diplomacy

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Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Chinese Premier Li Li Qiang engaged in discussions concerning trade relations and human rights during a recent diplomatic meeting.

The talks aimed to address key issues affecting the economic and political relationship between the two nations.

Albanese emphasised the importance of maintaining a constructive dialogue despite recent tensions, highlighting Australia’s commitment to fostering mutually beneficial trade partnerships with China.

Professor Tim Harcourt from UTS joins to discuss. #featured #trending #global view

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