FAA to announce rule allowing flight attendants to take a two-hour break for lunch while on duty

FAA to announce rule allowing more rest for flight attendants

The Federal Aviation Administration is expected to soon announce a new rule allowing flight attendants to take a two-hour break for lunch (as well as for a 10-minute bathroom break) while on duty, after a series of delays. (The Associated Press)

The Federal Aviation Administration is expected to soon announce a new rule allowing flight attendants to take a two-hour break for lunch (as well as for a 10-minute bathroom break) while on duty, after a series of delays. (The Associated Press)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Aviation Administration is expected soon to announce a rule allowing flight attendants to take a two-hour break for lunch while on duty, after a series of delays.

The National Transportation Safety Board delayed release of the rule for months, and has been forced to hold its own hearings on the issue to determine if the time change is safe. The agency’s inspector general recommended last week that the safety board reexamine the issue.

The FAA says it’s scheduled to issue the new rule at the end of the month. The FAA’s move comes after more than a year of wrangling over whether to change the rule, which is based on the idea that a flight attendant can spend as little as two hours on duty instead of eight because the extra time means she can spend more time with her family.

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The NTSB and industry representatives have had numerous meetings over the last year on the issue.

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2-hour rule

Last year, the FAA proposed a two-hour rule, but that rule got bogged down because of concerns that it doesn’t allow for enough rest. The FAA is proposing a new rule that will allow flight schedules to be adjusted if there are too few flight attendants on a flight and the extra hours result in the change of a crew member.

The safety board will be examining that issue, but safety experts have been divided on the safety change.

But flight attendants have said they like the idea of the safety change, in part because they’re allowed to take more time off to give themselves more hours.

Airlines are free to make their own changes to schedules, the safety board said. The board will examine whether any safety effects are warranted.

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Rest-after-duty rule

The rules that allow flight attendants to take a two-hour

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