Just as the flight data recorders from Air France Flight 447 were first being read–a few weeks shy of the two-year anniversary of the aircraft’s fatal plunge into the Atlantic Ocean four hours after takeoff from Rio de Janeiro en route to Paris–I started receiving calls from reporters asking for comment on word leaking out that pilot errors had caused the aircraft to stall and crash, killing all 228 people aboard.
Even if you are really tired of reading about Donald Trump, I encourage you to take a look at the June/July 2011 edition of Business Jet Traveler, where you will find him on our cover.
Brendan Gallagher died last Sunday morning at his home in London, just days after participating in press trips to Geneva, Belfast and Turkey with his usual enthusiasm and good humor. He was taken at a youthful 60.
In releasing its annual summer travel forecast recently, the Air Transport Association of America (ATA) projected modest, 1.5-percent growth in passengers over last year and expressed relief that people continue flying despite the overall economic impact of higher fuel prices. I would venture that ATA should worry as well about the cumulative impact of wedging people in unbearable economy-class seating.
Dassault Aviation’s grounding on May 26 of the entire 112-aircraft Falcon 7X fleet because of a runaway trim incident is extraordinary in many ways. (Dassault didn’t actually ground the 7X fleet, but it did ask the EASA to issue an emergency airworthiness directive; EASA, then the FAA, followed through quickly.)
At the same time as the Southwest 737 Flight 812 debacle was unfolding–almost as rapidly as the fuselage skin tore off the aircraft shortly after departure from Phoenix–a book crossed my desk that could have been written for the aviation industry, and Boeing and Southwest in particular. But the FAA could also take a lesson.
One of my assignments here at AIN is compiling and editing the Accidents page for our flagship monthly magazine, Aviation International News. Each month I comb through reports on the NTSB website and others, looking for those accidents that I think will be of value and interest to our readers. Unfortunately, I cannot include them all because of space constraints.
For the first time in the history of the Regional Airline Association (RAA), a sitting Department of Transportation Secretary attended the group’s annual convention this year.
Flying is still a mysterious thing for many people. I’m often asked what it’s like, what does it take to become a pilot, and what’s frightened me the most.
I spent most of my childhood summers on my grandfather’s farm, in the misty hollows that nestle in the Great Smoky Mountains of North Carolina.
In an age when every mistake in one’s life is attributable to a terrible childhood, I have no such excuse. I have only myself to blame. Whatever the road, it was of my choosing. And that is how this story begins, a near-lifetime ago.