If you received one of your certificates or ratings from the Fresno area in 2012 or 2013, you may be getting an unpleasant surprise.
The Federal Aviation Administration is sending out U.S. Code § 44709 letters to pilots who obtained a rating or certificate from designated pilot examiner (DPE) Bruce Kalashian between January 2012 and January 2014. This means that these pilots will need to be reexamined for the certificate in question, unless they had received a subsequent higher rating or certificate in the same category of aircraft by a different examiner.
The FAA has declined to issue much detail in the case, besides saying that the competency of the airmen examined by Kalashian is in doubt. Airmen that receive the letter will have 10 business days to schedule a reexamination, or face relinquishing the certificate for up to one month. If an affected pilot does not respond to the letter, they face enforcement action.
Pilots will receive multiple attempts at reexamination, but after the initial failure, he or she will need to relinquish the certificate until the exam is passed or for up to 30 days. After the month is up, the certificate may be downgraded, and the pilot will need to seek a CFI for further instruction and a new certificate exam.
While the FAA is addressing the issue head-on, many people are concerned that Kalashian’s oversights were allowed to continue for two years without intervention from the FAA. Many pilots are frustrated that they are being forced to be reexamined, despite having followed the rules.
We know that the FAA must ensure that airmen certified by Kalashian are safe to be in the skies, but calling for reexamination of someone nearly three years after their certificate issuance—even with satisfactory flight reviews—seems to put the burden on the airmen’s shoulders. What are your thoughts on the matter? Sound off in the comment section below!