Helicopter EMS provider Air Evac Lifeteam has entered the third level of the FAA’s safety management system (SMS) voluntary pilot project. Air Evac has 110 bases in 15 states and has been enrolled in the pilot project since February 2010. Dave Hardin, Air Evac’s director of safety, characterizes the company’s participation in the pilot project as a “challenging, but beneficial, process in the interest of safety.” Air Evac is only the third Part 135 operator to progress beyond Level 2, according to the FAA.
The FAA’s Inspector General this week begins an audit to review how well the agency is protecting its own Voluntary Disclosure Reporting Program (VDRP) against misuse.
A federal grand jury in Philadelphia indicted Joseph Picklo on August 23, charging him with possession of an explosive in an airport and carrying an explosive on to an aircraft. Federal investigators said that on March 29 this year Picklo attempted to pass through security screening with explosives in his backpack at Philadelphia International Airport (PHL). Airport security officials searched the backpack and confiscated two M80-style fireworks, flash-powder in a concealed container, a lighting wick and a flammable lighter.
The ADS-B system that is the cornerstone of the FAA’s NextGen ATC modernization plan is at risk of serious security breaches, according to Brad Haines, a hacker and network security consultant who is worried about ADS-B vulnerabilities. Haines first outlined his concerns during a presentation he gave at the Def Con 20 hacker conference in Las Vegas in July.
In the wake of a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report showing that foreign flight students can be cleared for flying lessons earlier than they would be cleared to fly commercially on U.S. airlines, the ranking Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee has filed a bill to close a loophole in the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP).
“The Aeronautical Repair Station Association (Arsa) has been quite clear…it does not see the need for security rules at contract repair stations,” Edward Wytkind, president of U.S. trade union the AFL-CIO’s Transportation Trades Department, wrote in a letter to Janet Napolitano, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
The U.S. government should focus on more efficient aviation security during times of fiscal austerity, according to a new study by the nonprofit Rand research organization. The “Efficient Aviation Security” report, released on August 21, focuses on the costs and the benefits of aviation security in the U.S. in the post 9/11 era. “To make rational security decisions, the benefits of a measure (or group of measures) must be compared with its varied costs to determine whether those benefits exceed the cost,” the authors conclude.
The New York Police Department took delivery of its fourth Bell 412 last month. The new ship will be used for counter-terrorism missions. NYPD Capt. James Coan said the city’s extensive air assets are “a force multiplier for patrol, gathering intelligence, counter-terrorism and the detective bureau.” The new 412 will be equipped with radiation-detection equipment that is effective from an altitude of 200 feet.
Raymond Conner has been promoted to president and CEO at Boeing Commercial Airplanes; previously he was senior v-p of sales and customer support for commercial airplanes. He succeeds James Albaugh, who will retire in October.
Embraer Executive Jets has tapped Jay Beever, previously new product interior design manager at Gulfstream, as v-p of interior design.
Sir Ralph Robins, formerly CEO and executive chairman of Rolls-Royce, has been named non-executive chairman of UK-based global aviation services provider Gama Group.
Two general aviation groups provided suggestions to a House congressional panel yesterday on how to make further security improvements to the process of training flight school students from foreign countries in the U.S.