Aviation Law In USA

In the U.S., Aviation law covers aircraft operations and maintenance of facilities. The Federal as well as the state governments have their own aviation laws.

Over a period of several years, the U.S. Congress has formulated several laws pertaining to aviation.

Various Aviation Laws

1926 Air Commerce Act

The main provision of this Aviation law was the requirement for certifying and registering aircraft which operated interstate as well as abroad.

Civil Aeronautics Act

This act was the result of an amendment to the above mentioned Air Commerce Act. A five member panel called the Civil Aeronautics Authority was created to cover aviation. This panel was later converted to form the Civil Aeronautics Board.

Federal Aviation Act

In 1958, Senator Monroney introduced a bill to the U.S. Congress for creating the Federal Aviation Agency which was an independent body. Accordingly, an aviation law called the Federal Aviation Act was passed in the same year. This agency faced several challenges such as airplane hijacking incidents. An amendment was therefore brought in which made hijacking and carrying dangerous weapons on board the aircraft a crime. It also provided the facility of armed marshals on flights if requested.

Subsequently, many acts have been passed like the Airport and Airway Development Act of 1970 and the Airline Deregulation Act of 1978.

Aviation and Transportation Security Act

Then came the terrorist attacks in September 2001 which brought about many changes in aviation laws in the U.S. Many strict rules were formed and incorporated into a new act. Accordingly, the Aviation and Transportation Security Act of 2001 was passed, which resulted in the establishment of the Transport Security Administration (TSA), a part of Department of Transportation. TSA now forms a part of Department of Homeland Security.

Some of the provisions of this aviation law:

  • Provision of 911 as an emergency number for phones which serve passenger aircraft
  • Establishment of an identification system for officers who are allowed to carry weapons in restricted areas
  • Provision of necessary technology which will help identify a person who is a possible threat and prevent him from boarding an aircraft
  • Provision of instant communication facility between passenger aircraft and officers on the ground
  • Provision for screening passengers as well as all property including mail, checked baggage and so on.
  • Thus, the U.S. Congress has been modifying aviation laws over the years to meet new challenges and problems and maintain high levels of security.

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