Twenty-nine-year-old Chana Daskal, the sole survivor of an Aug. 10, 2001 Papillon Grand Canyon Helicopters crash, will receive $38 million under a settlement. Besides losing her husband in the accident, Daskal suffered severe burns and had both legs amputated.
Since the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 1108 filed an application letter to the National Mediation Board (NMB) for representation of the 830 Flight Options pilots earlier this month, the fractional provider has increased efforts to thwart the union drive. It has set up a Web site to provide information to the pilot workforce about unions and, according to NMB filings, hired union-busting law firm Ford & Harrison.
Bombardier’s Challenger 605, announced at the 2005 NBAA Convention, made a nearly 3.5-hour maiden flight on January 22 in Montreal. “The first flight went very well,” pilot Frank Magnusson told AIN. “There were no surprises at all.” The length of the flight was longer than typical. Said Magnusson: “The airplane performed flawlessly so we just kept going” and ended as sunset approached.
Four reported incidents of in-flight loss of hydraulic fluid led to an emergency AD being issued Friday for the 139 in-service Premier Is. None of the incidents led to any mishaps, according to Raytheon Aircraft. The problem has been traced to the failure of a hydraulic tube assembly in the left engine. The directive requires a visual inspection of the affected part before further flight and thereafter at intervals of 50 hours.
A pilot has pleaded not guilty to manslaughter charges, following an accident in Hawaii last September that killed three passengers. Glen Lampton was flying a Heli USA AStar that crashed into the sea near Kauai’s Ke’e Beach. Two other passengers and Lampton survived uninjured. Lampton, who continues to work for Heli USA in a nonflying position, is also accused of reckless endangerment, providing a false statement and tampering with evidence.
The Helicopter Association International (HAI) has sent an urgent congressional alert to its members to contact their legislators about resolving continued delays in the FAA’s longstanding commitment to provide National Airspace System-quality communications and weather services in the Gulf of Mexico. According to HAI, more than 35,000 people live and work offshore, supported by nearly 650 helicopters.
At a public hearing yesterday, the NTSB singled out Part 91 operations in a special study on helicopter and fixed-wing EMS accidents. Between 1994 and 2004, the number of accidents doubled, with 83 since 1998. Main accident causes are CFIT, inadvertent operation into IMC and spatial disorientation or lack of situational awareness in night operations.
Significant increases in orders and deliveries will boost substantially the production of Cessna and Gulfstream business jets, according to the 2005 year-end financial reports just released by the OEMs’ respective parent companies, Textron and General Dynamics. Cessna booked orders for 100 Citations in the fourth quarter, bringing last year’s total orders to 329.
More stringent training requirements for pilots of Mitsubishi MU-2Bs will result from an FAA special safety review of the turboprop twin. The review, a portion of which was released today, was initiated last year following a series of MU-2B accidents. For Part 135 operators, the additional requirements will become part of their FAA-approved training syllabus and will be effective shortly.
Excessive speed might have been a factor in Tuesday morning’s fatal crash of a Cessna Citation 560 at McClellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad, Calif. The twinjet, registered to Goship Air in Ketchum, Idaho, was tracked by radar with about a 200-knot groundspeed at around 300 feet on final approach. The crew of Citation N86CE, on a flight from Hailey, Idaho, canceled IFR services shortly before the crash.