USDOT and FAA Clear Santa and His Sleigh

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WASHINGTON, DC — If you need a reminder that Christmas is only two days away, here it is: The U.S. Department of Transportation announced Wednesday it has approved Santa’s application requesting special operating authorities to serve various rooftop markets.

According to the USDOT, Kris Kringle (d/b/a “Santa Claus”) submitted an application on Nov. 1 requesting authorization by the DOT to engage in air transportation to various points throughout the nation on the night of Dec. 24-25.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said at a conference Wednesday that Santa has outfitted his vehicle, an “airborne sleigh,” with an 8 RP engine and has on hand a ninth reindeer equipped with supplemental safety and navigation gear.

The Federal Aviation Administration inspected the sleigh and certified its airworthiness.

Foxx said it is not in the USDOT’s authority to make supplemental nutrition for Santa during his marathon route mandatory.

“We will not mandate milk and cookies at homes. Certainly folks can do that if they choose to. It certainly seems like a reasonable course of action,” Foxx said.

Once Santa is airborne, responsibility for tracking his progress falls under the authority of the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD).