Gulfstream International Group, the parent company of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based Gulfstream International Airlines, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection today in an effort to restructure its debt and secure long-term financing. Gulfstream said the filing, registered with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida, would not affect its flight schedule.
News and issues relating specifically to regional airlines, including aircraft, engines, personnel, acquisitions, accidents, safety, security and training; and coverage of annual conventions of the U.S. Regional Airline Association (RAA) and European Regions Airline Association (ERA).
The Sukhoi Superjet 100 last month passed a noise-testing program involving eight certification flights from Italy’s Turin-Cuneo Levaldigi Airport. According to Sukhoi, preliminary results show full compliance with ICAO CAEP IV noise requirements.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Caribbean Airlines signed a firm order in late September covering nine ATR 72-600s worth some $200 million at list prices. To come configured in a 68-seat layout starting late next year, the airplanes will replace five de Havilland Dash 8-300s and allow Caribbean Airlines to add frequencies between Trinidad and Tobago and surrounding destinations.
Vietnam’s Air Mekong, 30 percent owned by U.S. regional airline SkyWest, on October 9 launched domestic services with four 86-seat Bombardier CRJ900s subleased from the St. George, Utah-based regional.
The Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) project officially entered its manufacturing phase on September 30, when Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) and Mitsubishi Aircraft held a ceremony in Nagoya, Japan, to mark the start of production of the first MRJ. During the event, MHI technicians began cutting aluminum for a frame component associated with the airplane’s horizontal stabilizer.
Two partial gear-up landings by Bombardier regional jets in three days in late September prompted the NTSB to investigate a possible connection between the incidents and other CRJ landing-gear failures over the past two years.
From a distance, the reason regional airlines would oppose a new law passed by Congress that sets a 1,500 flight-hour minimum for Part 121 first officers might seem obvious: The pool of pilots from which airlines can choose prospective employees will inevitably shrink. The rules of supply and demand dictate that the cost of hiring first officers will therefore rise.
As airline traffic continues to recover from the global recession, airframe and engine manufacturers continue to develop new models and consider follow-on products. Several companies provided updates at the European Regions Airline Association assembly in Barcelona in late September.
The European Regions Airline Association, which represents 70 intra-European airlines, has welcomed the “modest sign of gradual recovery” from the global recession. But the effect of airspace closures following the Icelandic volcanic eruption in April offset apparently strong underlying growth in European regional air travel in the year’s first half.
European Regions Airline Association member airlines expressed “outrage” at the failure of national governments in the region to compensate them for costs incurred in reimbursing passengers for flight cancellations following the eruption of Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajökull in April.