Colgan Air officials said that they had changed hiring requirement for pilots, raising the number of hours flown from 600 to 1000 hours. The move is a response to the fatal Continental Flight 3407 plane crash—operated by Colgan— from Newark to Buffalo, which killed the 49 passengers and crew members plus one person on the ground. The flight's pilot, Marvin Renslow, only had 625 hours of flight time; he also failed the FAA proficiency test three times.
The NY Times reported that yesterday the Colgan Air officals also "offered startling testimony that pointed fingers at their own pilots. John Erwin Barrett, the airline’s director of flight standards, said neither pilot in the twin-engine turboprop was paying attention to the flight instruments... The airline’s director of operations, Dean Bandavanis, said he thought the crew lacked 'integrity,' which he defined as 'doing the right thing when nobody’s watching.'" At issue was both Renslow's and co-pilot Rebecca Shaw's chatter below 10,000 feet (a violation of FAA rules) and Renslow's reaction to the plane's difficulties.
One of the people to testify at the NTSB hearings was the chief test pilot for the Bombardier Q-400. According to the Buffalo News, "Capt. Wally Warner, who said he conducted more than 1,000 stall recoveries for the Q-400 test flights, was asked by Debbie Hersman, a NTSB board member, what the Flight 3407 crew did right as it approached the Buffalo International Airport on Feb. 12. 'Obviously, the initial reaction to the stall warning was incorrect, that set the course for their actions,' Warner testified." While Renslow pulled back the yoke to bring the plane upward, Warner "said the proper thing to do, as he done the 1,000 times he put the Q-400 through its paces, was to lower the nose — not raise it as he did — and increase power."
The NTSB released an animation of the flight, with animation of the yoke as well.