FAA pushes new rules for flying in icy weather

FAA pushes new rules for flying in icy weather
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The Federal Aviation Administration is issuing new safety requirements for airplanes flying in icy conditions that could cost industry millions of dollars to comply with.

The new rules announced Monday will test the design, performance and handling of these airplanes to certify them to fly through freezing rain and drizzle. The airplanes would be tested flying through supercooled large drop icing and ice crystal conditions, the agency said.

This is the first time the FAA is testing airplanes to operate in these conditions.

"The FAA has [never before] required airplane manufacturers to show that airplanes can operate safely in a freezing drizzle or freezing rain icing environment," the agency wrote in the Federal Register.

The new standards are part of an effort by the FAA to limit the number of crashes caused by airplanes that freeze up while flying in cold weather conditions.

The safety standards will apply to transport category aircraft, which includes some passenger and cargo airplanes. They would also apply to specific turbine engines.

The FAA estimates the new safety requirements will cost industry more than $61 billion to comply with, but they could offer a public benefit worth more than $580 million, the agency says.

The new rules go into effect in 60 days.