NASA Will Release Airline Survey
NASA will release its suppressed report that it felt could undermine consumer confidence in air travel, its chief administrator said today before a congressional committee.
The report was a survey of 24,000 pilots, whose preliminary results showed that close calls—planes hitting birds or planes nearly colliding in mid-air—was double that of Federal Aviation Administration estimates.
According to The New York Times, NASA's chief, Michael Griffin, was less than agreeable during his testimony: Mr. Griffin testified before the House Committee on Science and Technology that NASA had no obligation to release confidential data that was commercially sensitive. He said a person knowledgeable about aviation could piece together, from the airport names and the equipment types, the identity of the airline involved in some cases.
He said NASA would eliminate entire categories of data before releasing the results and would finish by the end of the year, although that drew skepticism from the committee.
Griffin also argued the calculations were wrong, a claim one of the survey's designer denied.