Development of Commercial Air Navigation

June 20, 1925
Entire Report

Over night air mail service between New York and Chicago is scheduled to begin on July 1, 1925. Within a few weeks the post Office Department is expected to post the first advertisements for bids under the provisions of the Act approved Feb. 2, 1925, authorizing the Postmaster General to contract for air mail service.

These events are expected to expedite the development of commercial aviation in the United States by private individuals and corporations in two respects:

  1. By making available technical data concerning night operation over an illuminated, airway, and by establishing a basis for estimating the volume of freight or express patronage available to a commercial air line operating between New York and Chicago.

  2. By providing a dependable, paying load for air navigation lines; and by inspiring public confidence through the establishment of standards of reliability of equipment and pilots under rules set up by the Post Office Department.

The individuals most active in the promotion of commercial air navigation, both Government officials and officials of private organizations, express the opinion that no rapid general progress may be expected until a system of Government supervision similar to that exercised over water navigation has been established.

Sentiment apparently has crystallized into a demand on the part of interested persons for legislation such as was proposed in the Winslow bill (H.R. 10,522) to create a Bureau of Civil Air Navigation in the Department of Commerce.

Major Problems

Two major difficulties are cited as retarding the development of commercial aeronautics in this country:

  1. Lack of inspection, registration and licensing of aircraft; licensing and registration of pilots; preparation and regulation of landing fields, charting of routes, signal systems, a code for aerial navigation conduct and courtesy and other devices such as govern the operation of water craft.

  2. Lack of experience in the United States and lack of information concerning experience in foreign countries relative to costs of operation and other operating factors upon which rates for carrying goods and passengers might be based, and which would determine whether air transport, without government subsidy, may be a commercial success.

It is believed that passage of the Winslow till or a modification of it would go far toward supplying the needs of regulation.

Experimentation by the Government and by private orga

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