NBC Evening News for Saturday, Oct 08, 1983
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(Studio) Letter of concern, from experienced air traffic controllers who did not strike, to Federal Aviation Administration regarding current level of air safety noted.
REPORTER: Connie Chung
(Chicago, Illinois) Air traffic controller situation since 1981 strike examined; basis of controllers' concern over use of inexperienced controllers too soon discussed. [Aviation Consumer Action spokesperson Matthew FINUCANE - feels margin of safety is rapidly closing.] [Federal Aviation Administration operations chief Jack RYAN - disagrees.] Letter from non-striking controllers to Federal Aviation Administration administration J. Lynn Helms quoted on screen. [CONTROLLER - doesn't believe current system is safe; explains.] Systems error incidents since 1982 at Cleveland, Washington, DC and Chicago air ctrs. listed on screen, discussed. [Judge Gilbert MEREITT - recalls Federal Aviation Administration official's claim that systems errors occur frequently.] Helms' contradictory claims regarding controllers' work hours/week to Senator Charles Percy outlined on screen. [Representative Elliott LEVITAS - notes safety risks with overworked controllers.]
REPORTER: Jim Cummins