AMC to Meet With Airlines to Address Pilot Shortage

Air Mobility Command will convene another meeting with the airline industry and other stakeholders on May 8 to try to find a way to address the coming pilot shortage, the command’s chief said Wednesday. The May 8 summit will be the third time AMC, other military services, and civil reserve air agencies meets with the airlines to try to find ways to deal with a projected shortage of about 700 pilots. The airline industry has a dramatic need for pilots in the near future, and the experience of military pilots is in demand, AMC boss Gen. Carlton Everhart said. If the Air Force cannot compete with private salaries and, more importantly, not give pilots enough time to fly, it will lose precious manpower, he added. AMC will have about 1,600 pilots eligible to separate in four years, and the Air Force needs to find ways to convince these pilots to stay on Active Duty, or remain in the Air National Guard or Reserve in order to keep them in service. This comes at a time when AMC is also dealing with a shortage of manpower. In the last three years, the command has lost more than 1,580 manpower authorizations. This has hit the mid-level maintenance community hard, meaning the service has plenty of entry-level maintainers and supervisors, but not enough three- and five-level maintainers to work on its jets, Everhart said.