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October 13, 2014, 1:15 PM

In a deal that could be a preview for the already red-hot helicopter leasing market, GE Capital Aviation Services (Gecas) announced October 13 that it is acquiring helicopter leasing firm Milestone Aviation for $1.775 billion.

October 13, 2014, 12:55 PM

The Bell 206L-1 that crashed on October 4 while approaching a hospital helipad in Wichita Falls, Texas, had collided with power lines about one block northeast of the building, according to a preliminary report by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The crash killed the patient and the flight nurse; the pilot, who was interviewed by NTSB investigators, and paramedic were seriously injured.

The Part 135 helicopter was on a night VMC approach to the United Regional Hospital at approximately 1:55 a.m. local when it crashed.

October 13, 2014, 12:50 PM

This year, Bombardier’s Safety Standdown took a themed approach focused on attention and distraction issues through a series of 32 different seminars. The agenda included the following topics: Attention Control Techniques; After the Scene of the Accident: Causal Distractions; Technology in the Cockpit; Managing Human Fatigue to Enhance Safety; and Loss of Control In Flight: Attention Empowers Prevention.

October 13, 2014, 12:45 PM

NASA formally delivered new technologies designed to help pilots in the Alaskan wilderness make better flight decisions, especially when disconnected from the Internet, telephone, flight services and other data sources. Peter Worden, director of NASA’s Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, Calif., and the facility’s aeronautics director, Thomas Edwards, met with Alaskan officials on October 6 to detail the system known as Traffic and Atmospheric Information for General Aviation (Taiga), a collection of open-source algorithms, concepts and data.

October 13, 2014, 12:40 PM

Responding to a 40-percent rise in runway incursion incidents reported during 2013, Italy’s National Flight Safety Agency (the ANSV) has issued four safety recommendations. The agency said that of the 151 total runway incursions reported last year, 24 involved animals, while the remainder involved vehicles, aircraft or people.

Rome Fiumicino Airport logged the most incursions (26), followed by Bologna (14) and Milan Linate (10).

The total number of incursions so far this year sits at 65.

October 13, 2014, 12:35 PM

The ATM [air traffic management] industry has made good progress but there is still a long way to go. Both the industry and states can take important measures to further improve safety and transform ATM performance.” That was the position Jeff Poole, director general of the Civil Air Navigation Services Organization (Canso), expressed last week as he outlined the organization’s vision to improve aviation safety in Africa, while also achieving seamless regional airspace by explaining the steps necessary to transform ATM performance.

October 13, 2014, 12:25 PM

Efforts to return Chicago Center to full operation today appear to be on track. The FAA said Friday that agency pilots from Oklahoma City flew an aircraft through Chicago Center’s airspace last Thursday to help air traffic controllers test more than 100 radio frequencies in preparation for the return to service. FAA technical teams also continued testing the 835 new telecommunications circuits at the facility.

October 13, 2014, 12:20 PM

The National Transportation Safety Board last week announced it has extended until October 31 the comment period for its notice of proposed rulemaking governing the agency’s investigation procedures. The original NPRM–Docket No. NTSB-GC-2012-0002–published late last summer, proposed several rule changes about how the Board conducts investigations. The Board proposed organizing investigation procedures into mode-specific subparts, as well as updates to several terms and other procedures.

October 13, 2014, 12:15 PM

Cal Fire’s fleet of 22 converted Grumman S-2T firefighting tankers received a structural clean bill of health from the NTSB that allowed the aircraft to return to normal flight status, the company announced last week. The approval came four days after a pilot was killed when his aircraft crashed in steep terrain near Yosemite National Park. Cal Fire immediately grounded the fleet of S-2Ts to safeguard crews until structural and aging-aircraft issues could be addressed.

 

October 13, 2014, 12:10 PM

Owner-flown aircraft face unique challenges such as a lack of guidance, financial support and clear safety procedures set to a standard,” said NBAA Safety Committee chairman Jim Lara. To that end, the association is conducting a full-day, single-pilot safety standdown on October 20, just before the NBAA Convention. The gathering will draw upon the experiences of pilots, with an emphasis on peer-to-peer information sharing.

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