The UK Parliament’s Transport Committee has criticized the European Union’s proposed flight- and duty-time regulations, saying that while they represent an improvement over the current versions, some of the new rules seem to fly in the face of current scientific research. The changes, driven by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), are expected to take effect in November this year.
The International Civil Aviation Organization’s 2013 annual safety report on commercial aviation concludes that although Africa accounts for only 5 percent of accidents recorded last year, that region’s accidents account for 45 percent of the fatalities, more than any other area ICAO reviewed.
In 2012, five accidents in Africa claimed 167 lives. In Asia, also a focal point for safety concerns, 23 accidents claimed 161 lives.
Bombardier’s annual Safety Standdown, organized by the manufacturer’s business aviation flight operations team, begins in Wichita on September 30. The standdown is designed to foster a safety culture through better communication. Military aviation uses the standdown concept–essentially grounding a particular squadron or fleet–when a significant high-risk safety issue emerges.
An August 27 report by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Inspector General (IG) concludes that none of the 49 suggestions related to the hiring and training of new air traffic controllers outlined in the FAA’s independent review panel two years ago have been implemented.
The Department of Transportation’s Inspector General has identified the agency’s seven biggest challenges for the 12-month period beginning October 1, two of which apply to aviation. The IG said it will focus on improving FAA oversight of the aviation industry and the operations of the national airspace system, as well as on identifying and addressing root causes of problems with NextGen and setting program priorities.
Cessna and Bell Helicopter parent company Textron and partner AirLand Enterprises unveiled a prototype intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance/strike aircraft named “Scorpion” at the Air Force Association Air & Space Conference in National Harbor, Md., on Monday.
A recent FAA flight check discovered a previously unknown obstruction beneath the Runway 4 ILS glideslope at New York La Guardia Airport (KLGA), ruling out a full ILS approach to that runway. Aircraft landing on Runway 4 can now use only the localizer approach, which carries minimums nearly 300 feet higher. In poor weather, the only practical option for the area is to operate both LGA and John F. Kennedy (KJFK) airports on a southeast runway configuration, which, in turn, creates significant arrival delays at nearby Teterboro Airport (KTEB).
On September 12, Europe’s EADS unexpectedly assigned a schedule and a market segment to its “E-Thrust” hybrid propulsion concept, which was revealed at the Paris Air Show this year with Rolls-Royce. The “E-Airbus,” under its new moniker, is to enter into service in 2030 as a regional aircraft, probably a 70- to 100-seater. The announcement came during a conference organized by the French government in Paris about its industrial policy.
A ceremony commemorating the delivery of the 1,000th Embraer E-Jet last Friday not only gave the Brazilian company a chance to celebrate the success of the past 10 years, but also to offer a glimpse at what it hopes proves an equally auspicious future. An E175 painted in American Eagle livery, the 1,000th airplane went to long-time customer Republic Airways. The company placed an order for 47 of the 76-seat airplanes at the beginning of the year and holds options on another 47.
American Airlines has spent some $400 million in the past few years to retrofit its existing fleet for the planned NextGen flight environment in the U.S. But at this stage it has not seen the operational benefits it had hoped for, according to the airline’s director of airspace modernization and advanced technologies.