04/07/2012

Trainee Pilots Course Cancelled And Students Abandoned

The Irish Aviation Authority has begun an investigation into the reports following the termination of a training contract involving a Florida-based college and the Waterford-based Pilot Training Centre of Ireland, which could see up to 80 students each losing over €80,000 in fees, which they paid for flight training in the US.

The trainee pilots are stranded in Florida after being told that their course will not be continuing.

The trainees had paid fees to the Pilot Training Centre of Ireland, but the Florida Institute of Technology Aviation told students that they would not be allowed into the air again.

It is also thought that FIT's contract with the training centre has been terminated.

Speaking to RTÉ'S News at One, one of the trainee pilots said that if he does not get the money back from the course it will leave his family $100,000 in debt.

The IAA has said in a statement it is aware of certain difficulties with the Florida Pilot Training College.

An officer of the IAA is in Florida to brief the students and to explore the possibility of allowing the students to continue their training in Florida or back in Ireland.

The students said that a FIT representative told them that it had not received two payments due.

It is understood that the students paid €84,875 in fees in four instalments into an account in Dublin, and from there the money was to be transferred to the FIT.

(H)

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