Sec. 121.543 - Flight crewmembers at controls.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, each required flight crewmember on flight deck duty must remain at the assigned duty station with seat belt fastened while the aircraft is taking off or landing, and while it is en route.

(b) A required flight crewmember may leave the assigned duty station --

(1) If the crewmember's absence is necessary for the performance of duties in connection with the operation of the aircraft;

(2) If the crewmember's absence is in connection with physiological needs; or

(3) If the crewmember is taking a rest period, and relief is provided --

(i) In the case of the assigned pilot in command during the en route cruise portion of the flight, by a pilot who holds an airline transport pilot certificate and an appropriate type rating, is currently qualified as pilot in command or second in command, and is qualified as pilot in command of that aircraft during the en route cruise portion of the flight. A second in command qualified to act as a pilot in command en route need not have completed the following pilot in command requirements: The 6-month recurrent flight training required by 121.433(c)(1)(iii); the operating experience required by 121.434; the takeoffs and landings required by 121.439; the line check required by 121.440; and the 6-month proficiency check or simulator training required by 121.441(a)(1); and

(ii) In the case of the assigned second in command, by a pilot qualified to act as second in command of that aircraft during en route operations. However, the relief pilot need not meet the recent experience requirements of 121.439(b).

[Doc. No. 16383, 43 FR 22648, May 25, 1978, as amended by Amdt. 121-179, 47 FR 33390, Aug. 2, 1982]