Australian minerals institute AusIMM awarded its Jim Torlach Health and Safety Award to the Flight Safety Foundation for its Basic Aviation Risk Standard (Bars) program, which was designed to audit aircraft operations that are used extensively for carrying mining company personnel. The institute noted the Bars program raised the level of minimum acceptable standards for aircraft operations worldwide. Bars consists of four components: risk-based international aviation standard, auditing program, aviation safety training programs and global safety data analysis program.
Accidents, Safety, Security and Training
News about significant aircraft accidents and information from accident reports; information on safety procedures and concerns; crew, passenger, aircraft and airport security issues; and news about simulators and training procedures.
Preliminary Report: Jet Overruns Florida Runway
Cessna Citation CJ3 525, Spruce Creek, Fla., April 27, 2014–Unable to stop on the 4,000-foot Runway 23 at Florida’s Spruce Creek airport, a Cessna CJ3 ran off the hard surface and came to rest partially submerged in a pond off the departure end of the runway. The aircraft remained intact after the accident. None of the three people aboard was injured in the accident.
Preliminary Report: Helicopter Drops Ship’s Pilot During Transfer
The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced the expansion of a trial program it started earlier this year with the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) to deter people from pointing at aircraft with lasers, which can temporarily blind pilots. The FBI will offer up to $10,000 for information leading to the arrest of anyone who intentionally points a laser. The reward is available for 90 days in all 56 FBI field offices.
NTSB investigators located the cockpit voice and flight data recorders last night from the Gulfstream GIV-SP that crashed at about 9:40 p.m. on Saturday while taking off from Runway 11 at Bedford Hanscom Field near Boston under FAR Part 91 operating rules. All seven aboard were killed, including passengers Lewis Katz (co-owner of the Gulfstream), Anne Leeds, Marcella Dalsey and Susan Asbell, and the three crewmembers–chief pilot James McDowell, copilot Bauke “Mike” de Vries and flight attendant Teresa Benhoff.
Canadian health and safety investigators charged Ontario’s troubled air ambulance service, Ornge, with 17 violations of the Canadian Labor Code related to the nighttime crash of a Sikorsky S-76A on May 31 last year near its base in rural northern Mosonee that killed its four-man crew. The helicopter went down shortly after takeoff en route to a patient pick-up.
This year is shaping up to be bad for business jet fatal accidents, according to safety figures compiled by AIN. In just the first five months, 24 people have died in five fatal business jet accidents worldwide. In total last year, there were 23 deaths from eight business jet accidents. To date, U.S.-registered business jets were involved in three accidents, resulting in 12 fatalities–including Saturday’s Gulfstream IV-SP crash near Boston that killed seven. In all of last year, six U.S.-registered business jet fatal accidents killed 17 people.
The corporate and business aviation sectors have posted strong safety numbers, recording few accidents, but that is no reason for operators to become complacent. That was the message from NTSB member Robert Sumwalt at the Flight Safety Foundation/NBAA annual Business Aviation Safety Summit (Bass), held in late April in San Diego.
The North Sea offshore industry held a brainstorming session in late April to examine the issues it faces with helicopter flights to and from oil and gas platforms. Although the organizers emphasized that most actions in the February CAA review (known as CAP 1145) relate to accident prevention, mitigation measures–such as emergency breathing systems (EBS) and passenger size restriction–cause the more urgent problems and accounted for a significant part of the discussion.
An international field research campaign led by Airbus and NASA has gathered a wealth of data on icing conditions in convective weather, especially on ice crystals that cause engine icing. The eight-week effort ended in March in Darwin, Australia, and the researchers expect to publish their report early next year. The partners in the project hope to gain a better understanding of icing conditions that will allow them to devise mathematical models for equipment manufacturers to use when designing detection systems.
One of the Pratt & Whitney PW1500G turbofans installed on the first Bombardier CSeries flight-test vehicle suffered an unspecified “incident” late on Thursday afternoon during stationary ground maintenance testing at Bombardier’s facilities in Mirabel, Quebec, the airframe manufacturer confirmed on Friday.