News - Airman Practical Testing May Continue during Government Shutdown when conducted by Designees

12-24-2018 - FSANA is sending this notification out on the Eve of Christmas in response to reports from multiple locations around the country that Designated Pilot Examiners (DPEs) have indicated either confusion about current policy or have been told that they may not continue conducting FAA Airman Practical Tests during the current U.S. Government shutdown.

In contact that FSANA leadership has had with senior FAA staff it has been indicated that the FAA “in no way desires to stop the conduct of airman practical tests by DPEs during the government shutdown” and that DPEs may continue to conduct practical tests if they are normally authorized to do so in absence of prior approval required by their managing office.

This may seem slightly confusing, but in some cases, for specialty tests, when DPEs are due for yearly recurrency oversight, or for DPEs who are newly designated or on probationary status, explicit approval and/or oversight is required for them to conduct a practical test. For DPEs who normally are able to act no stoppage of their activities is required. It should be noted that there is a difference between the notification of activity requirement that DPEs must provide their managing office prior to acting and requirement of approval prior to action.

We all hope that this government shutdown is able to be remedied quickly, but in the interim, FSANA felt it critical to convey this important information so that any question about the continued provision of airman practical tests by DPEs is clearly stated. Airman practical tests are allowed to continue as normally provided during the government shutdown.