The FAA yesterday reached a settlement with Southwest Airlines that reduces the civil penalty it proposed to levy against the carrier on March 6 last year from $10.2 million to $7.5 million. The agency proposed the penalty after it found that Southwest operated 46 airplanes on 59,791 flights without performing mandatory inspections for fuselage fatigue cracking.
A new regional airline subsidiary of Mexicana Airlines will start service from Guadalajara on March 15 with used Bombardier CRJ200s, the company announced last month.
Should anybody harbor any doubts, two recent events confirmed that the mid-decade airline-order boom has ended: Airbus announced A320 production cutbacks and Ryanair has come looking for bargain-basement prices for single-aisle airplanes. Airbus now plans to cut single-aisle production from 36 to 34 a month starting in October and possibly to a lower rate later.
Dubai-based leasing company LCAL has opted to shrink the size of its order for 787 Dreamliners from 21 airplanes to five, Boeing confirmed today. The move comes a week after Russia’s S7 Group, parent of S7 Airlines, cancelled an order for 15 of the airplanes. Together, the contract cancellations/modifications lowered the size of the 787 orderbook from 910 to 879.
European low-cost carrier Ryanair has entered “early negotiations” to order 200 to 300 new Boeing 737-800s or Airbus A320-series airliners in the coming two years. The equipment, which includes replacement capacity, would support continued expansion during the 2012 to 2017 timeframe, with Ryanair potentially benefiting from any decline in aircraft prices during the current recession.
Since the Big Three automakers flew to Washington in business jets to ask for bailout money, rumors about flight department closures have multiplied.
Newly launched PrivateJet Share.com allows travelers to buy and sell individual seats on chartered aircraft. Individuals can use the site to post available seats for sale to pre-registered fellow members, with a 25-percent commission applying on each seat sold.
Japan’s All Nippon Airways has decided to delay its decision on whether to order Boeing 747-8s or Airbus A380s due to the global recession, the company confirmed today. “ANA has decided to postpone the selection of its future large aircraft type, given the unforeseen changes to its operating environment since the financial crisis of September this year,” it said in a written statement.
In another sign of hard times in the airline industry, the Air Transport Association (ATA) has canceled its inaugural Aviation Leadership Forum, originally planned for March 4 to 6 at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. “Given the extremely fragile state of the U.S.
What will the regional airline industry look like when the economic dust settles? That’s the question the Regional Airline Association challenged its panelists to answer at the RAA fall meeting, held October 28 and 29 in Washington, D.C.