Airport tower closures among topics at Tampa aviation conference - WFLA News Channel 8

Airport tower closures among topics at Tampa aviation conference

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TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

Dozens of aviation enthusiasts attended the third annual Safety Stand Down Day in Tampa Wednesday. The conference was designed for pilots and others to learn about airplane safety and technology.

One of the major issues facing pilots over the next few months is the planned closures of 149 air traffic control towers. The Federal Aviation Administration says the control towers at Albert Whitted Airport and Lakeland Linder Regional Airport are among those scheduled to close.

Initially, the closures were to take place on April 7th, but on April 5th, the FAA moved the date to June.

"Right now, the schedule is for those towers to be closed on June 15th. However that's not to say that couldn't still be averted because there are several members of congress that have introduced legislation to prevent that closure," says Russell Lawton, the Director of Safety for the Air Charter Safety Foundation

Lawton says if the towers end up closing, there are procedures already in place to transform an airport into a so-called "non- tower" airport.

Today's conference also included a presentation by Doreen Welsh. She was a flight attendant on US Airways Flight 1549. That was the flight known as the "Miracle on the Hudson" because the pilot landed the jet in the Hudson River in New York just minutes after taking off from New York's LaGuardia Airport.
 
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