The Colgan Air crash near Buffalo in 2009 continues to cast a shadow over the FAA’s rulemaking, with several legislative measures affecting the industry, according to Leslie Smith, division manager for the agency’s air transportation division, speaking at the National Air Transportation Association’s annual Air Charter Summit in Washington, D.C.
Aurigny, the airline of Guernsey in the Channel Islands, took delivery of its first jet–a 122-seat Embraer E195–early last month. The airline ordered one aircraft to help protect the air services the island lost when low-cost carrier Flybe announced it would pull out of the lifeline Gatwick-Guernsey route. The new aircraft operates four round trips a day, every day of the week.
The Embraer jet cuts flight time to 35 minutes from the 45 minutes it took the ATR 72s that previously operated on the route.
The list of FAA GPS procedures using Waas, known by ICAO as space-based augmentation system (SBAS) procedures, continues to grow steadily. These include ILS-equivalent localizer precision with vertical guidance (LPV) approaches, providing centerline and glideslope guidance down to 200 feet at more than 800 Part 139 runways in the NAS, plus another 2,600 at various heights above 200 feet at other NAS Part 139 and non-Part 139 runways. At most of the non-Part 139 runways, of course, there’s no ILS, and probably never will be. SBAS is filling that need.
The results of this year’s AIN Product Support Survey are in, and some big changes have upended last year’s rankings.
I’ve been thinking a lot about complacency since the crash of a Gulfstream IV on takeoff from Hanscom Field in Bedford, Mass., that left seven people dead. Any accident, especially one with fatalities, affects those of us who have spent our entire lives and careers in aviation. But one that occurs at an airport where we regularly work has a particular impact. The accident investigation continues, but the National Transportation Safety Board has already issued a preliminary report that raises some troubling questions about whether the pilots conducted a routine flight control check.
This year’s accident picture is looking worse than last year’s. The number of fatalities from business jet accidents worldwide in just the first half of this year exceeds the number for all of last year, according to statistics gathered by AIN. In the first six months of this year, 29 people died in seven fatal crashes involving U.S.- and non-U.S.-registered business jets, compared with 23 people killed in eight fatal mishaps in all of last year.
Airbus Group announced yesterday that it is “pursuing disposal options for its investment in Dassault Aviation.” Airbus’s 46-percent share gives it no power in decision making and is only a legacy of the share the French state used to have in Dassault. The Dassault family, via the GIMD holding company, owns slightly more than 50 percent of the manufacturer of the Rafale fighter and the Falcon business jets. Investor activist group TCI estimates that Airbus’s share in Dassault is worth €5 billion.
Bombardier Aerospace today reported second-quarter revenues of $2.5 billion, up from $2.3 billion a year ago, thanks to “higher deliveries of regional airliners but offset by lower business jet shipments due to the Challenger 350 transition,” noted Bombardier president and CEO Pierre Beaudoin. The division reported a pre-tax profit of $141 million in the quarter, some $3 million more than in the same period last year.
National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) member and pilot Dr. Earl Weener told attendees at an EAA AirVenture 2014 forum on Wednesday that the safety of corporate aviation is “very good and getting better.” He said personal general aviation flights continue to account for the majority of aviation accidents, and most of those are caused by a loss of aircraft control in the air and on the ground.
Bombardier CEO Pierre Beaudoin now will exercise more direct oversight of the three units that comprise the company’s Aerospace division, after years of what he considers substandard performance, the Canadian executive conceded during Bombardier’s second-quarter earnings conference call on Thursday.