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Guest metamarty

PPL and Eyesight - I need a bad eye!!!!

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I just spoke to the medical institute in preparation for PPL training and I couldn't believe what I heared! My left eye has a refractive error of +5, and my righ eye is 100% OK. In the Netherlands we implement JAR-FCL 3.340 and I was told that I am disqualified because the difference between two eyes cannot exceed 3 dioptres!!! The +5 is no problem, but I need to have a bad right eye in order to qualify!!!Can someone please tell me this is joke, I've been working towards this all my life and now they practically tell me to sit and wait until I get old hoping my right eye turns bad so I can get a PPL?! :-hmmm Does anyone have any info on this? Can I punch myself to damage my eye? Is this the end to my never started flying carreer?Please help me,Marty

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How about thinking in the opposite direction here.Not wanting to see you do bodily harm to yourself, how about corrective surgery?Is it an option in this case?

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Well, if it's possible it could be an option. Except that I'm scared to death of anything remotely connected to medical treatment. Imagine somone cutting into your eye! Besides, the current JAR regulations prohibits eye surgery but if I'm correct, this is changing in the future.It still leaves my puzzled though, that they would have happely accepted me if my right eye was anywhere between +2 and +5.

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Hi Marty,I'm no medical examiner, but knowing some as I do having gone through some 3rd class medicals, I'm surprised that corrective glasses can't be used to qualify you. I'm in the US, and have no idea about the differences in standards for medicals between countries. However- and maybe this is where you're going with this- for a 2nd class or 1st class medical, 20/20 vision is required and is much more strict. A 2nd class is required for a commercial license, and 1st class for an ATP- both here in the US have the exact same eyesight requirements and are much more strict than the 3rd class (private). Of course if you plan flying as a career, even being a CFI, you will need the 2nd or 1st class.Good luck with this. How much time have you spent training to date? I always recommend people do the 3rd class medical before even commencing training, because some medical issues are show-stoppers right from the get-go. Hopefully your's isn't. I've seen folks get to the stage of doing their solo flight and being nixed, with all that effort and time being wasted. I even think that career advisors at school should seek out young possible pilots and counsel them to have a medical way back in the early stages, so that a recovery can be made in course work to be able to go do something else.Good luck with this. Does Europe have an equivalent of the AOPA, that could help? Once again they know about US standards, but have ME's that can answer this stuff.Bruce.

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We use JAR-FCL-3 for certification. I'm not sure, but I thought this was used in the US too. The only license I need is a recreational license. I'm not planning on a career, it's just recreational. Therefore, a refractive error of +5 is OK, but for some reason, someone came up with the rule of "anisometropia":[(5) Anisometropia][(i)] [in an initial applicant] thedifference in refractive error between thetwo eyes (anisometropia) shall not exceed3

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I read somewhere (not quite sure where, think it was the site of the Dutch Aeromedical institute) that any eyesurgery will automatically disqualify you as well.The guidelines here are extremely strict (and kinda silly in some cases).

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Yes, they told me that too, but that regulation is going to get dropped next year. So if I am to fly, I'm going to have to face a scary useless operation, that won't even improve my eyesight but will keep the bureaucrates happy. I'm also fighting a hard battle getting of paxil now, which I need because of my low serotonine balance. All antidepressants are an instant disqualification. Imagine what an 747 captain faces when he hits a major depression. Getting help will cost him his job, so he struggles on silently. Hardly a way to promote healty and safe operation.

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I know. JAR-FCL has some very weird provisions in it.My eyes are both -3.5 so I wouldn't be disqualified on that. But I'm also suffering from partial night blindness (which would disqualify me probably from getting a night/instrument rating), bad knees (probably not a disqualifier on its own) that might put together disqualify me.Add a tendency for diabetes in the family, a heridetary disorder of the central nervous system my father suffers from (though if I'd been a carrier I'd have become symptomatic about 20 years ago) and I don't even want to spend the

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Why don't you do your training in the US? I'm not sure how the conversions work but you'd atleast be able to fly here and pass the medical. Also, if you're willing to spend 15,000 (euros? pounds?), and punch yourself in the eye, would you be willing do move to the US and do the PPL in the US? It's a LOT cheaper, on the order of between 2-5 thousand USD depending on where you go and how long it takes you to do it (down here in Florida-Phoenix East, in Daytona Beach, has a special advertised for $1995 I believe)Skyy

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US PPL isn't recognised in the Netherlands (and probably the rest of the EU).You need to redo all your exams, your medical, your flight exam, and fly another 20-30 hours instruction.JAR-PPL is a LOT stricter and more difficult than the FAA one. Theoretical is about 8 times larger for example, and spread over 9 separate sessions each with a passing grade of over 80%.Don't pass them all within 1 year of starting training or 6 months after the first exam (whichever comes first) and you have to start all over again.You ARE allowed to fly in the EU with a US PPL, but only on US registered aircraft (this restriction applies only to EU citizens AFAIK). There are very few of those around there and thus rental rates are very high. For someone who wants to achieve an EU CPL (and possible ATPL) it is a dead end.

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I didn't know this. I do know however that the Netherlands is a bad aviation country. They'll do anything to keep people and aircraft on the ground. For example, a new law was passed which severly restricts the flying time of the DC3 of the Dutch Dakota Organisation. For "safety reasons" the aircraft cannot fly longer than a certain amount of time per year in Dutch airspace. When they takeoff now, they immediatly head for international territory over the North Sea, and fly South heading Belgium where they can fly above land again. They are also rapidly closing every airport they can get their hands on. I was one of the last persons to fly a glider plane from EHYP. Next in line is EHVB which will probably be gone in a few years.I'm seriously contemplating doing PPL in America now. Maybe one day I'll had enough of the netherlands and move to the US. At least, an aircraft is usefull there.

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Not just EHVB, EHTW will likely close as well (without the military it can't stay open, the civilian operators can't afford the maintenance on their own), as is EHSB (though that's AFAIK military only).I wouldn't be surprised if more are to follow (Volkel or Gilze-Rijen seems logical as they're 2 military bases close together, Woensdrecht could be next because who needs a dedicated training base, de Kooi maybe (just colocate the naval helicopters somewhere else).Teuge is also at risk. Operated jointly by 3 cities, the largest of which wants it closed (to make room for housing development) and has put up severe restrictions on operations in the area. Helicopter flights at one point were limited to 100 a year (ask for landing permission at least a week in advance) most of which were of course reserved for emergency services.Last year I heard of a plan to stop the distribution of AvGas at GA fields by withdrawing the licenses required.That would mean all GA aircraft would have to fly abroad or to Schiphol, Eelde, Beek, Eindhoven or Rotterdam (with the associated skyhigh landing fees) to get fuel.Don't know what the status of that plan is, with a new right-wing government in place.Yes, this country is really bad and getting worse all the time.But soon it won't matter as GA will no longer be needed to supply pilots for the military (disbanded) and airlines (taken over by foreign competitors or driven out of business by insane taxes and fees).

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Yes I have heard this. My school has many students from Europe and I talked to a lot of them about why they came here. Their response was the same, in the the Ground portion was incredibly hard. A friend of mine from Belgium is converting his stuff now...and I had a look at the JAA exams. Questions asking how much blood the heart pumps per minute for example. I just can't see where this is pertinent to being a pilot. Makes me happy that the FAA isn't like the JAA!Almost everyone I talked to here though has said that the flight training is better in the US as a whole (depending on where you go of course).skyy

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I think the theoretical basis for JAR-PPL is a lot better, but practical instruction is superior in the USA because instructors are a lot more experienced and face more competition (which weeds out the bad ones) due to the high volume of both students and instructors.

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Well Jeroen, what are we waiting for> Let's head over to the US! If we can't find our dreams here, why not try it there. How long is a US PPL valid? I can manage to come there every 5 year to extend it. Hope you're not required to fly every year. That would be costly. Is there some kind of european-kid-bootcamp for PPL?

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