House votes to extend airline pilot retirement age from 60 to 65


(TVLW) – Northwest Airlines and its pilots union are giving only lukewarm support to a bill approved by the U.S. House that would extend the retirement age for commercial pilots to 65.

Pilots are now forced to leave the cockpit at age 60.

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If the proposal is approved by the Senate, the bill would put the U.S. pilot retirement age in line with international standards.

The union’s vice chairman, Monty Montgomery, says the Air Line Pilots Association wants to make sure any changes include safety protections supported by the union.

Northwest spokesman roman Blahoski says the airline is neutral on the change and believes it won’t have much impact on Northwest in the long term.

House Transportation Committee Chairman Jim Oberstar of Minnesota says that each day that passes without raising the age to 65, around five of America’s senior, most experienced pilots are forced to retire.