U.S.-registered business jets experienced significantly fewer total accidents and fatalities last year versus 2012, but the number of fatalities in U.S. business turboprop accidents more than tripled year over year, according to preliminary statistics gathered by AIN.
AINsafety » January 20, 2014
The FAA proposed a $150,000 civil penalty against Farmingdale, N.Y.-based Talon Air on Friday. In a news release, the agency said the company allowed four of its pilots to operate its Hawker 4000s “at least 64 times between October 23, 2011, and July 9, 2012, while they were unqualified to serve as on-demand [Part 135] flight crewmembers.”
U.S. Senators Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and James Inhofe (R-Okla.) have introduced legislation–S.1941–to require the FAA to follow the established rulemaking process as the agency tries to implement its obstructive sleep apnea screening rule. Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska), an original cosponsor of the bill, is a member of the Senate general aviation caucus, along with Manchin and Inhofe.
The Rechargeable Battery Association (PRBA) urged the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) in a January 12 letter to promptly complete its review of pending rules designed to bring the U.S. into compliance with ICAO on methods of transporting lithium batteries aboard civil aircraft. Citing the prohibition of lithium batteries aboard passenger aircraft, the PRBA said it sees no reason why the government should delay rule harmonization any longer.
Pilot Keith Baird initially thought something aboard his 1968 Cessna 210 had exploded just after takeoff on December 28 when he heard a loud bang and a significant increase in outside air noise. It turned out that Baird’s Cessna had struck a Canada goose as the aircraft was climbing through 400 feet on departure from the Chicago-area Brookeridge Airpark.
Four people perished in the January 12 crash of a U.S.-registered Cessna Citation 501-SP in Germany. The jet crashed on approach to Trier-Fohren Airport after arriving from Shoreham Airport in the south of England. Weather in the area at the time of the accident was reported as one-quarter-mile visibility, with an indefinite ceiling of 100 feet in freezing fog. The aircraft struck a power pole short of the runway on approach and burst into flame. The nationalities of the victims remain unknown.
The Japan Civil Aviation Bureau is investigating what caused smoke to pour from a main battery vent aboard a Japan Airlines Boeing 787 on January 14. The manufacturer developed a fix for its lithium batteries after last year’s fleet grounding, so the work now is focused on whether the fix actually worked and prevented a larger fire, or whether the smoke and the associated battery alarms were indicative of some other issue.
A United Airlines Boeing 777 turned back to Newark International Airport 45 minutes after departure on January 16 after five flight attendants were injured following an encounter with severe turbulence. The cabin crew had just begun service activities at the time the turbulence hit. No passengers were injured as all were still belted in their seats following the takeoff.
Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker believes the only way to solve the growing ATC congestion problems in the Middle East is to develop a single air traffic management system similar to Eurocontrol’s Single European Sky concept. Qatar is among several countries in the region searching for a congestion solution to support regional airline expansion plans.
A first step in developing guidelines to safely integrate UAVs into U.S. civil airspace could come from efforts the FAA recently initiated with the Academy of Model Aeronautics. The organizations signed an agreement on January 12 to ensure continued safe operation of model aircraft that comply with a Congressional directive requiring an organization other than the FAA to help regulate model aircraft flying activities.