U.S. FAA chief resigns over drunken driving charge

WASHINGTON,  (Reuters) – The top U.S. aviation safety  official resigned yesterday over a drunken driving charge.

Randy Babbitt said in a statement that Transportation  Secretary Ray LaHood had accepted his resignation from his post  as the head of the Federal Aviation Administration.

Babbitt, 65, was arrested on Saturday in Fairfax, Virginia,  and charged with driving while intoxicated.

A former pilot and union official, Babbitt has led the FAA  since 2009.
Babbitt did not mention his arrest in the statement, but  said he would not “let anything cast a shadow” over the FAA.

“I am confident in their ability to successfully carry out  all of the critical safety initiatives underway and the  improvements that the FAA has planned,” Babbitt said.

LaHood called Babbitt a “dedicated public servant” and  credited him with improving relations with the air controllers  union and introducing new pilot training guidelines.

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