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National Agricultural Aviation Association eNewsletter
Voice of the Aerial Application Industry
April 5, 2018
NAAA 2018 Industry Survey – Ending in a Few Weeks – Don’t Miss Participating

EPA will not give much credibility to the data we collect if only 3 percent of U.S. operators submit a survey; however, if we have a 95 percent industry response rate, it adds significant credibility to the data we collected.

The NAAA 2018 Industry Survey is well underway and will be closing at the end of April. Please make sure you complete the survey now so your information can be used to accurately summarize the agricultural aviation industry. If you have completed the survey, thanks! If you have not received a chance to fill in the survey, please contact Ken Degg at as soon as possible and we will send you the link. It’s critically important to our industry that we get 100 more Operators to respond to this survey. Your help is needed!


NAAA has teamed with survey scientist Tim Struttmann, MSPH, who successfully conducted the 2012 survey, to assist with collecting the requested data. Individual responses will be kept confidential. NAAA, Struttmann and his team have entered into confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements to protect the privacy of the data collected.


If you have started the survey but did not have time to complete it, it is not too late. If you click on the link in the email invitation again, the survey will begin right at the place you left off. This makes it convenient to finish the survey without having to start over. If you come to questions for which you might need to look up some business information in order to answer accurately, you can immediately return to those questions and pick up where you left off. If you have heard about the survey but have not received an email invitation to participate, be sure to check your spam folder for the email address you have on file with NAAA. The email invitation to the survey may have accidently ended up in the spam folder.


In January the first mailing of invitations to participate in the NAAA 2018 Industry Survey of Part 137 Operators and Pilots was sent out by US Mail. The letters were sent to all holders of Part 137 certificates on the FAA’s list of certificate holders. Following these letters, all pilots and operators for which NAAA has an email address should have received an email requesting they participate in the online survey. When responding to the email notification, simply click on the link included in the email and begin the survey.


If you completed the survey based on the invitation from the letter sent out by US Mail, you may still receive an email inviting you to participate. This is because two separate databases, one from the FAA and one from NAAA, were used to create the invitations in an effort to reach every ag aviator possible. If you were on the FAA’s list of Part 137 certificate holders and NAAA had an email address for you, you will receive an invitation to complete the survey in both letter and email formats. If you completed the survey based on the letter and then received the email, and additional emails indicating you have not yet participated, you can ignore those emails. You are receiving them because the system cannot track who responded based on the letter.


The survey is made up of two separate sets of questions depending on whether you are an Operator or Pilot. The response to the first question asking if you are an owner/operator of a business that holds a part 137 certificate will direct you to the proper set of questions. Operators should answer for the entire operation, and pilots should answer based on the aircraft they usually fly. The survey is web-based on a secure website.


Many of the questions used in the 2018 survey are the same as those used in the 2012 survey. This allows NAAA to track changes in the industry, which is beneficial for showing the adoption of technologies and techniques that improve accuracy and safety. As an example, recently the EPA has accepted that GPS is the dominant means of swath guidance in agricultural aviation and that human flaggers are seldom used. The questions on acres treated by type of crop are critical for demonstrating the importance of aerial application in protecting these crops. This information is especially important as EPA goes through their registration review process. We need to show how important aerial application is for applying crop protection products, and the data from this survey is the only method we have of collecting that information.


Completing the survey shouldn't take long—roughly 20 minutes. Remember, the value of this survey is only as strong as the type of information you submit and the number of completed surveys we can collect. The value of the survey results can be substantial. Oftentimes we have used the real industry survey data to counter EPA theoretical overestimates of risk made about our industry which has resulted in saving aerial labels on crop protection products and preventing restrictions on aerial labels on crop protection products. Trends indicate a large number in the industry are using closed contained mixing/loading systems and GPS to minimize worker exposure. Trends also indicate that a large number in the industry are using smokers to gauge wind direction. This is the type of information we need to show the EPA.


EPA will not give much credibility to the data we collect if only 3 percent of U.S. operators submit a survey; however, if we have a 95 percent industry response rate, it adds significant credibility to the data we collected.


If you are an ag pilot or operator and do not receive an invitation or have any problems completing the survey, please email NAAA’s contractor, Tim Struttmann, at

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This newsletter is intended for NAAA members only. NAAA requests that should any party desire to publish, distribute or quote any part of this newsletter that they first seek the permission of the Association. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent those of the National Agricultural Aviation Association (NAAA), its Board of Directors, staff or membership. Items in this newsletter are not the result of paid advertising and are only meant to highlight newsworthy developments. No endorsement by NAAA is intended or implied.
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