The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) welcomed the entry into force of the Brazil-European Union (EU) aviation safety agreement. While it was enacted on August 27 following an exchange of diplomatic notes between Brazil and the European Union, the two parties held their first certification meeting under terms of the agreement just this past Thursday.
Jeppesen has begun development of FliteDeck Pro (for commercial operators) for Microsoft’s Windows 8/Surface tablet. Delta Air Lines is the launch customer and plans to equip its 11,000 pilots with Microsoft Surface 2 tablet computers as electronic flight bags, with Boeing 757 and 767 pilots scheduled to receive their units later this year and the rest next year. The Surface 2 tablets will run Jeppesen’s FliteDeck Pro and will be used for document viewing and checklists, replacing 38 pounds of paper per airplane and saving Delta $13 million a year in fuel and associated costs.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has concluded that the improper installation of a fuselage crown skin panel during the manufacturing process was the probable cause of substantial damage to a Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 during a rapid decompression incident in April 2011.
Pilot unions have condemned as unsafe new flight and duty time rules approved by the European Parliament on October 9. The decision overturned an earlier 21 to 13 vote against the new rules by the Parliament’s own transport committee on September 30.
The FAA has upgraded Ukraine’s safety rating from Category 2 to Category 1 following an international aviation safety assessment of the country’s civil aviation authority in July. A Category 1 rating means Ukraine now complies with the highest level of ICAO safety standards and its air carriers can add flights and service to the U.S.. With the Category 2 rating, Ukrainian airlines were allowed to maintain existing service to the U.S. but could not establish new services.
In fact, no Ukrainian carrier currently provides service to the U.S.
The FAA this month will issue a rule requiring a new approach to stall training for airline pilots that runs counter to previous guidance. According to Dr Jeff Schroeder, the agency’s chief scientific and technical officer, the new approach will, “take a lot of work to undo previous training because some pilots are ‘spring-loaded’ to the previous technique.”
On July 10 the European Commission updated its list of airlines subject to an operating ban or operational restrictions within the European Union. Following safety improvements in its home nation, Philippine Airlines became the first airline from that Southeast Asian country to be removed from the so-called blacklist and allowed back into European skies (having been banned in 2010). Venezuelan airline Conviasa, banned last year, also was removed from the list.
Nigeria’s Accident Investigation Bureau said Friday that an initial review of the cockpit voice recorder of the Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia that crashed on takeoff October 3 at Lagos confirmed an automated cockpit voice warning alerting the crew to a possible problem before liftoff. The system called out “takeoff flaps, auto-feather,” indicating that one engine might not have been producing takeoff power. At this time it is unclear whether the warnings were made before the aircraft reached V1 rotation speed.
The European Parliament’s approval of controversial new harmonized flight and duty time limitation (FTL) for pilots last Wednesday came only a week after its own Transport and Tourism (Tran) committee voted against its adoption. The development concludes more than five years of work led by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
SkyTeam reports solid progress in Garuda Indonesia’s preparations to join the alliance in March next year, when it expects the Manila-based airline to become the only Indonesian carrier affiliated with a major international grouping. Garuda’s enrollment would make it the 20th SkyTeam member and the tenth from Asia.