Aviationweek has also posted a video of the Katie Couric 60 minutes interview of Captain Sullenberger plus another video containing interviews with the rest of the flight crew while the FAA has posted mp3 audio clips of all cockpit and air traffic communications for LaGuardia tower (LGA), Teterboro tower (TEB), and the New York Tracon (N90).
In addition, Aviationweek has posted a podcast containing Captain Sullenberger’s February 24 testimony before the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee’s aviation subcommittee while written transcripts are posted on the Committee’s website. Captain Sullenberger used the opportunity to speak out about the pitiful state of aviation in the USA by having this to say:
While I love my profession, I do not like what has happened to it. I would not be doing my duty if I did not report to you that I am deeply worried about its future.
Americans have been experiencing huge economic difficulties in recent months – but airline employees have been experiencing those challenges, and more, for the last 8 years! We have been hit by an economic tsunami. September 11, bankruptcies, fluctuating fuel prices, mergers, loss of pensions and revolving door management teams who have used airline employees as an ATM have left the people who work for airlines in the United States with extreme economic difficulties.
It is an incredible testament to the collective character, professionalism and dedication of my colleagues in the industry that they are still able to function at such a high level. It is my personal experience that my decision to remain in the profession I love has come at a great financial cost to me and my family. My pay has been cut 40%, my pension, like most airline pensions, has been terminated and replaced by a PBGC guarantee worth only pennies on the dollar.
He further went on to bluntly state that:
I do not know a single professional airline pilot who wants his or her children to follow in their footsteps.
Let us hope that all of this well deserved media attention to the skill of Captain Sullenberger and his flight crew brings some much needed attention to the deteriorating state of commercial aviation.