This Day in FAA History: May 10th

Full FAA Chronology at this link.
19650510: The Miami Air Route Traffic Control Center provided air traffic control service for an emergency Air Force airlift to the Dominican Republic during U.S. intervention in civil conflict in that country. In 1,710 missions, the airlift carried 14,699 tons of cargo and 17,921 passengers.
19730510: The Civil Aeronautics Board published the first rule regulating smoking on aircraft for reasons of consumer comfort and protection. The Board required airlines to provide separate sections for smokers and nonsmokers. Subsequent modifications to the rule included a 1981 requirement that airlines guarantee a seat in the nonsmoking section to every nonsmoker who met the check-in deadline. (See March 19, 1970, and June 20, 1984.)
19820510: FAA began an experimental program of allowing airlines to buy, sell, and transfer airport landing “slots” among themselves. The program included a “use or lose” provision and restrictions on transfer by carriers allotted slots on the basis of essential air service. On July 6, FAA announced that it was suspending the buy-sell policy, but would continue to allowed the exchange or trade of slots. On August 5, the agency announced that it was easing certain restrictions on this slot trading. (See March 6, 1984, and December 20, 1985.)
19900510: FAA announced that a contract for development of a prototype program for air traffic control training had been awarded to Hampton University, a designated Historically Black College or University (HBCU). Hampton thus joined the Air Traffic Control Training Center at Eden Prarie, Minn., as one of two institutions to receive Federal funds as part of the Collegiate Training Initiative (CTI) begun by FAA earlier in the year. Three other educational institutions subsequently joined the CTI, but without receiving Federal funds. Graduates of CTI programs became eligible to apply to FAA for employment as developmental controllers without having to attend the FAA Academy.
19950510: Effective this date, DOT suspended rules requiring transportation companies to conduct preemployment alcohol testing for safety-sensitive workers (see February 3, 1994). A Supreme Court decision of April 5, 1995, had vacated the Federal Highway Administration’s rule on this subject and raised questions about the validity of similar rules issued by FAA and the Federal Railroad Administration. At DOT’s request, Congress amended the relevant legislation to permit such tests rather than to require them. On May 9, 1996, DOT accordingly published a rulemaking proposal to harmonize the regulations with the legislation by making pre-employment testing voluntary for employers.
19980510: FAA ordered all older Boeing 737s temporarily grounded until mechanics inspected high-voltage fuel tank wiring for problems that could cause a fire or explosion. FAA gave airlines seven days to complete the inspections. The action came after United Airlines mechanics found evidence of electrical arcing on wiring removed from another 737. Thomas McSweeny, FAA director of aircraft certification, stated that nearly every one of the first 13 aircraft inspected prior to the order exhibited some level of chafing on the insulation that separated the wiring from the metal conduits carrying the wiring through the fuel tank to fuel pumps. May 14, FAA expanded the order to include somewhat newer 737 planes and added a set of wires exempted from the original inspection. In some cases, when mechanics performed inspections of newer planes already in the shop for major repairs, they found chafed high-voltage wires. (See April 7, 1998; July 23, 1998.)
20020510: FAA issued a proposed rule that would reduce the minimum vertical separation between aircraft from the current 2,000 feet to 1,000 feet for all aircraft flying between 29,000 and 41,000 feet, thus allowing more airplanes in the same volume of airspace. At the time, aircraft at those altitudes had to be separated by 2,000 feet vertically, meaning they could fly only at 29,000, 31,000, 33,000 feet and so forth. Implementing Reduced Vertical Separation Minima procedures was intended to increase the routes and altitudes available and lead to more efficient routings that would save time and fuel. (See December 10, 2001; October 22, 2003.)
20120510: FAA announced a contract award to ITT Exelis and GE Naverus to help accelerate the development of satellite-based procedures that would allow aircraft to fly more directly to their destinations. Under the $2.77 million contract, ITT Exelis, the prime contractor, and GE Naverus, the sub-contractor, would develop required navigation performance (RNP) approach procedures into five airports: Ted Stevens Anchorage International, James M. Cox Dayton International, Charles B. Wheeler Downtown Airport (Kansas City), General Mitchell International (Milwaukee) and Syracuse Hancock International. (See March 2007.)
20200510: Colombian airline Avianca filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. Southern District of New York, citing coronavirus-related travel restrictions as the reason for the bankruptcy filing.