Projected demand for private charter flights suggests significant volatility over the early part of the Northern Hemisphere summer season, according to the latest data from online charter portal Avinode. The company’s forward-looking demand index for 30 days beginning June 2 showed marked decreases in most categories analyzed for the North American and European markets, with some notable exceptions.
AINalerts » June 3, 2014
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.
Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) wants the FAA to make the controversial North Shore helicopter route over Long Island permanent, albeit with a few changes. The offshore route became mandatory in 2012 but is scheduled to expire under a sunset provision on August 6 unless the FAA renews it.
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.
Cabin interior component and aircraft fastener manufacturer B/E Aerospace signed a definitive agreement to purchase Emteq and F+E Fischer + Entwicklungen for a combined $470 million. Berlin, Wis.-based Emteq makes aircraft interior and exterior lighting systems, as well as aircraft cabin management and power systems. Fischer manufactures seating products for civil helicopters. The Emteq transaction is expected to close this month, while the Fischer deal will be finalized in the third quarter.
Now air charter buyers can use their smartphones to grab the next available helicopter seat bound for the Hamptons. The new Blade app lets customers book a seat on an existing flight or charter a whole helicopter and then use the app to help fill the seats. The app is backed by New York City’s Liberty Helicopters. Flights booked on Blade take off from NYC’s East Side Heliport and land in South Hampton, East Hampton and Montauk, with return flights to Midtown’s West Side Heliport.
The Middle East and North Africa Business Aviation Association (MEBAA) will hold its next MEBAA Conference (MEBAC) in Tunisia on September 10 and 11. This will be the third MEBAC and the first to be held as a two-day event, the association said. The conference allows members and prominent stakeholders across the region’s aviation sector to deliberate and discuss the issues surrounding North Africa’s business aviation market, including FBO challenges and regulatory framework, MEBAA said.
Last Thursday, the House Ways and Means Committee approved H.R.4718, a bill that would make accelerated, or bonus, depreciation permanent. If passed, this would allow for 50 percent of costs for new investments in equipment and software–a list that includes such things as business jets–to be written off in the first year. More than 150 groups, including NBAA and NATA, supported the legislation.