Air France pilots on Saturday voted to continue striking until at least Friday, extending by another five days a walkout that has forced the airline to cancel more than half its flights over the past week. The point of contention centers on Air France’s stated plans to shift more capacity to its low-fare Transavia subsidiary, whose pilots work for significantly less pay than those of the main airline.
Malaysian Airlines has confirmed that one of its Boeing 777s has crashed in eastern Ukraine, about 31 miles from the border with Russia. Flight MH17 was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur with 280 passengers and 15 crew on board. According to Ukrainian air traffic controllers, they lost contact with the aircraft at around 14.15 UTC almost 20 miles from the waypoint at Tamak.
Air France unveiled the details of its partnership with executive charter operator Wijet for first-class connections. Starting today, passengers of the “La Première” cabin on long-haul flights from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport can buy an optional connecting flight to and from their final destination aboard one of Wijet’s Cessna Citation Mustangs.
Alpha Star Aviation Services, the newest player in the Saudi private aviation market, provides flight operations, technical support, VIP flight-support services and administration, with a focus on air ambulance flights after being set up in 2010.
Johan Bank has been appointed vice president of engineering at KLM Engineering and Maintenance. With a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the HTS engineering school in Haarlem and a master’s degree in energy production, Bank began his professional career at KLM Flight Operations as a flight engineer on DC-10s. Most recently Banks was director of MRO at KLM Engineering & Maintenance’s engines division, where he oversaw all production processes and implementation of Six Sigma methodology.
Air France Industries KLM Engineering & Maintenance (AFI KLM E&M) and Sabena Technics have reached an agreement under which the Franco-Dutch group will take control of Barfield, the North American subsidiary of Sabena Technics. The transaction is scheduled to close in the first half, subject to regulatory approval.
Sellers and lessors placed 23 Fokker aircraft with 12 existing and three new Fokker operators last year, Fokker Services announced in late January. The total comprises 12 Fokker 50s and 11 Fokker 100s. The company said that because various Fokker operators have chosen to retain their fleets longer than anticipated, the number of available aircraft did not grow as expected during the year, leading to fewer placements than in the previous two years.
UK regional airline Flybe has raised almost $260 million in fresh capital through a share flotation launched February 20 in London. The company, which has been battling to rebuild its business model with an aggressive program of cost cutting, is issuing a total of up to 141.5 million new shares to raise £155.6 million. The offer price on February 20 was 110p per share, representing a 7.2-percent discount on the stock’s 118.5p mid-market price on February 19.
AFI KLM E&M has been awarded CCAR 145 approval by the Civil Aviation Administration of China for its Shanghai components maintenance shop. After a final audit carried out last month, during which the Chinese authorities inspected management systems, processes, technical manuals and technician qualifications, the workshop was granted approval as a maintenance organization on Chinese soil.
Charter operator Gainjet (Stand 2306) recently expanded its fleet with the addition of a 68-seat VIP-configured Boeing 737-400. The Greece-based group has made a specialty of operating former Boeing airliners, with two other 737s already in service (one with 48 seats and the other with 60 seats). The fleet also includes a very spacious 62-seat 757-200.
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