Change is afoot in the European regional airline sector, it would seem. Gone are the days of the “us and them,” with the regionals on one side, the major airlines on another and the low-cost carriers playing the role of bad-boy upstarts.
Trans States Holdings subsidiary Compass Airlines has won the right to fly 20 new 76-seat Embraer E175s owned by American Airlines, the first of which the regional airline expects to add to its fleet in the first quarter of next year. Under the terms of a new code-share deal with American, Trans States will fly the airplanes as American Eagle from a hub yet to be announced.
“We are currently evaluating where the new E175s that will be operated by Compass will be deployed and will share that information at a later date,” said American Airlines in a written statement.
China’s first privately owned regional airline has awarded Birmingham, England’s Dunlop Aircraft Tyres (Hall 4 Stand D10) a three-year deal to supply tires for its expanding fleet of regional airliners. Under the agreement, Dunlop will support China Express Airlines’ Bombardier CRJ900 NextGen regional jets.
The Guiyang-based airline operates nine of the 75-seat jets and expects to expand the fleet to 12 by the end of this year and to 30 by 2016. The aircraft operate services to cities including Chongqing, Ganzhou and Guiyang,
With India’s airlines still mired in losses, the country’s new budget, announced on July 11, did little to address some of the aviation industry’s most pressing concerns. It offered nothing on reforms in taxation on aviation fuel and maintenance, repair and overhaul—long issues of contention the aviation industry hoped India’s new government would address.
The Department of Transportation’s recent requirement for first officers to have 1,500 hours is taking its toll on air service to some parts of the U.S, a Regional Airline Association spokesman said during a recent hearing on air service to small communities before the U.S. House aviation subcommittee. Brian Bedford, president and CEO of Republic Airways, urged the FAA and Congress to work together to fix the pilot supply challenges created by the new qualification issue by allowing structured credit for more of the logged flight hours required for an air transport pilot certificate.
Speaking Wednesday at the 39th annual Regional Airline Association Convention in St. Louis, Republic Airways CEO Bryan Bedford called for a fundamental shift in the “model” on which pilot unions negotiate for compensation, characterizing the imbalance of pay between first officers and captains as irrational and counterproductive.
Seemingly bucking the trend suffered by most of the rest of the regional airline industry, Phoenix-based Mesa Air Group has managed to attract a fair share of qualified pilots to accommodate its seemingly unlikely growth. But while speaking Wednesday at this year’s Regional Airline Association Convention in St. Louis, CEO Jonathan Ornstein made certain to ensure no one came away from the briefing with any doubt about his position on the new legislation that requires new hire first officers to carry an air transport pilot certificate.
U.S. FAA Administrator Michael Huerta on Tuesday made his second appearance in three years at the annual Regional Airline Association Convention.
Embraer and SkyWest Airlines announced at the Regional Airline Association convention on Tuesday that they have reached a 12-year component management service agreement by which Embraer will provide support for the carrier’s entire fleet of E175s. The agreement includes more than 160 repairable part numbers, covering 21 ATA (Air Transport Association) chapters of the SkyWest Airlines E175 fleet. Embraer also signed a 10-year contract with the airline to provide the Ahead-Pro system.
The shortage of qualified entry-level pilots at the regional airlines hasn’t come as some unexpected phenomenon to the Regional Airline Association. The group has warned for years now that the change in first-officer pilot requirements that mandates an ATP certificate and what it terms an “arbitrary” 1,500 hours of flying time would result in loss of air service to small communities in particular.
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