Aviation Industry

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General Aviation Brief History:

The civil aviation world consists of two categories according to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA): scheduled airline service and general aviation (FAA, n.d.). The Aviation industry as we know it today was born from General Aviation (GA), and both their histories are inextricably linked. People’s ambition to fly stretches back to ancient times, of tales and legends passed down from Greek civilizations, and a passionate drive to master the sky. It is in this same spirit that GA currently resides. The enthusiasm people have for aviation is arguably, unrivalled. There’s a strong sense of camaraderie within the GA industry, a sense of bravado that lends itself to any such death defying occupation. The current GA industry is comprised of two parts: Private operators, described as those who fly without compensation and Charter operators, describes as those who operator for compensation (FAA, n.d.). As of today, general aviation makes up more than 1 percent of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product and supports almost 1.3 million high-skilled jobs in professional services and manufacturing and hence is an important component of the aviation industry and the economy as a whole (AOPA, n.d.).

The aforementioned divisions of GA can be further defined, per the FAA’s Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR), as Part 91 and Part 135 operators:

 Part 91: These regulations are in place for aircraft owners that operate for non-commercial purposes. These are typically private individual or corporations that fly without compensation.

 Part 135: These consist of aircraft that fly for commercial, ‘for-hire’ purposes. These are typically ‘charter’ flights which are compensated. Comparable to Part 121(Commercial Airlines...

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... a ‘grass-roots’ approach by which each individual is given a portion of the responsibility for security. This method commonly practiced in airports, where regular concerned citizens report suspicious activity and items to security personnel. This method has proven successful in the realization of lowered accident rates in the GA community as stated by Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety Nicolas Sabatini "This record is due to a dedicated commitment to safety by everyone in general aviation." (Sweet 2006)

It is important to keep a level headed perspective when dealing with issues of security, especially in the aviation field. At times, the knee-jerk reactionary rules imposed by the TSA may, very well, ensure the security of the issue, but a careful balance must be struck between this dogged need for security and essential opportunity for nurtured growth.
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