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To fly in periods of low visibility pilots must be rated by the FAA to fly by instruments Pilots may qualify for this rating by having a total of 105 hours of flight experience including 40 hours of experience in flying by instruments they also must pass a written examination on procedures and FAA regulations covering instrument flying and demonstrate to an examiner their ability to fly by instruments Airline pilots must fulfill additional requirements Those hired as flight engineers must pass FAA written and flight examinations to earn a flight engineers license Captains and first officers must have an airline transport pilots license Applicants for this license must be at least 23 years old and have a minimum of 1500 hours of flying experience including night and instrument flying Usually they also have one or more advanced ratings such as multi-engine aircraft or aircraft type ratings dependent upon the requirements of their particular flying jobs Because pilots must be able to make quick decisions and accurate judgments under pressure many airline companies reject applicants who do not pass required psychological and aptitude tests Although some small airlines will hire high school graduates most airlines require at least 2 years of college and prefer to hire college graduates almost 90 percent of all pilots have completed some college In fact most entrants to this occupation have a college degree If the number of college educated applicants continues to increases employers may make a college degree an educational requirement Depending on the type of aircraft in use new airline pilots start as first officers or flight engineers Although some airlines favor applicants who already have a flight engineers license they may provide flight engineer training for those who have only the commercial license Many pilots begin with smaller regional or commuter airlines where they obtain vital experience flying passengers on scheduled flights into busy airports in all weather conditions These jobs are often a
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