Thursday, March 18, 2010

Canadian Bakin'

Here's something I hadn't thought about since I've never flown an LSA into Canada: EAA reports that Transport Canada (aka TC) is doing what Canadians are famous for: acting friendly.
TC is simplifying and cheapifying LSA flight from the US into Canada.
TC has a new Standardized Validation form that bestows the same operating limitations on LSA that have been in place for American experimentally built aircraft.
In the past, pilots here at home had to call up TC, receive permission to operate an LSA in Canada, get validation paperwork issued to keep in the plane, then pay a $100 fee.
Now, all that our neighborly Olympic hockey champs require is a download of the Standardised Validation form, compliance with customs requirements, and LSA pilots are good to fly into maple leaf country.
Best news? The $100 fee has been dropped.
There is one catch, and it's a potential deal breaker for many older pilots.
U.S. pilots must have a private pilot certificate with a valid 3rd class or better medical.
That means Sport Pilot license holders with only a driver's license can't legally fly into Canada.
But wait - there's more! According to Randy Hansen, EAA's director of government relations, FAA and TC are working toward Canada allowing all U.S. Sport Pilot licensees the same privilege of operating in its airspace.
You can oggle and download the Validation form here.
And if you're going to Oshkosh Airventure this year, there's a Transport Canada booth in the Federal Pavilion where Hansen suggest pilots can go to learn more about the program...and while you're at it, urge them to allow every flavor of Sport Pilot to fly LSA into the Great North.
It's good for Canadian business, and American business too, as it will increase exposure of LSA up thar.
Fringe benefit: Canadians are a great and friendly people too, and fun to fly with.
---composite image!

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