Yes, Virginia, The FAA Does Have A Sense Of Humor

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Image: NORAD

Image: NORAD

Those of a certain age may remember the famous New York Sun editorial from 1897, when a little girl was reassured that “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.” The FAA took the same position this week, announcing that Santa has equipped Rudolph with new ADS-B avionics and received a $500 rebate. “This state-of-the-art technology will enhance my safety and increase efficiency while delivering toys to children around the world, provided they are good for goodness sake,” said Santa Claus, according to the FAA.

The FAA noted that Santa was the 2,354th aircraft/sleigh owner to receive a rebate since the program was relaunched two months ago to encourage owners to equip. The ADS-B avionics, which will enable FAA air traffic controllers to track Santa’s location with pinpoint accuracy, will be required starting Jan. 1, 2020, in all aircraft flying in certain, controlled airspace. To qualify for the rebate, the Santa sleigh was flown and validated, though at night, while children were asleep, to avoid confusion. “Ho ho ho,” Santa said, according to the FAA. “Merry Christmas!”

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