I often get the feeling that general aviation is the red-headed stepchild in government’s view of the aerospace industry. With apologies to the late Rodney Dangerfield, GA seems to get no respect from the federal government. There have been three comprehensive studies on aviation in the past quarter century, and a few others on narrower topics.
Guarded optimism for the year ahead, despite a number of looming concerns on several fronts, was the dominant theme expressed by leaders of the major general aviation (GA) associations in a town hall forum discussion yesterday morning at Heli-Expo.
Helicopter Association International (HAI) president Matt Zuccaro noted that HAI continues to enjoy robust membership and strong financial health, evidence of a surging rotorcraft community. That said, however, he also expressed concern about restrictive policies targeting helicopter operators.
Reports that the captain of the Asiana Airlines Boeing 777-200ER that crashed at San Francisco International Airport was stressed about landing at the airport without a glideslope left many of us shaking our heads.
Business aviation continues to grow in Russia but it is no longer expanding at the rates observed few years ago, according to Eugeny Bakhtin, vice president of the Russian United Business Aviation Association (RUBAA).
“We used to have annual increases of 40 to 50 percent,” he said. “Today our development continues at the rate of 10 to 12 percent year on year. [However], despite the notable slowdown in the rates, we still enjoy a steady increase.” He explained that the slowdown is due to the growing maturity of the local market.
I got to thinking about voluntary versus mandatory safety reporting programs after reading an article in a British newspaper about two UK pilots who allegedly fell asleep in the cockpit of an Airbus A330 shortly after takeoff. What caught my attention was the statement from the UK Civil Aviation Authority that enforcement action against the pilots is unlikely.
Effective December 1, most general aviation flights in China will enjoy a significantly simpler planning process, with military approval for such civil flights no longer required. The long awaited alleviation of the “regulations on the approval and management of general aviation flight mission” was announced on November 18 by the People’s Liberation Army general staff department and the Civil Aviation Administration of China.
Patrick Ky, the new executive director at the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), is willing to take into account peculiarities of general aviation, which includes business aviation and helicopters, in future regulation. Prompted to react to the industry’s unease at often being lumped with the airline world, Ky confirmed that EASA is carrying on with its efforts, with the FAA, toward less restrictive and more performance-based certification rules, he told AIN.
Not long ago it was a real struggle for charter operators to get slots into Japan’s Narita International Airport and every other Japanese airport for that matter. Thankfully, for charter operators around the world, Japan has adopted a much friendlier approach to business aircraft operations.
The Japanese Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) and Japanese Business Aviation Association (JBAA) announced on October 21 that the county is implementing new charter operations regulations based on FAA Part 135 standards.
Business aviation continues to grow in Russia, when measured by the number of aircraft and flights. However, it is no longer growing at the rates observed few years ago, according to Eugeny Bakhtin, vice president of Russia’s United Business Aviation Association (RUBAA).
The Baltic Air Charter Association (BACA) is holding seminars at two aviation events in the UK this month. The first seminar will address charter brokerage and operator issues during the Business Aircraft Europe Expo and Conference, which will be held September 11 and 12 at London Biggin Hill Airport. The second seminar will be held in conjunction with the British Business and General Aviation Association (BBGA) on September 17 at the British and General Aviation Day at Cambridge Airport.
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