New York-based charter operator ExcelAire recently submitted to Brazilian Federal Police Chief Renato Sayao a 150-page report on the September 29 midair between an ExcelAire Legacy and a Gol Airlines 737.
Air traffic control
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released its annual safety report this week, which highlights concerns around the globe. Although the report focuses on commercial aviation incidents and accidents, business aviation operators can benefit from its content, given that specific regions and countries are analyzed for problem areas.
The National Air Transportation Association and NBAA have reacted swiftly to the FAA’s warning that the agency might withhold funding for the Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) due to "budgetary shortfalls." In a June 16 letter to FAA associate administrator for aviation safety Nicholas Sabatini, the two trade groups said "the ASRS program is a tremendous safety benefit to all users of the aviation system.
Taking a tough line before next week’s opening of contract negotiations with the air traffic controllers union, the FAA said yesterday that “fundamental changes are needed in the contract if the agency is to afford new systems and inspectors to improve safety and to modernize the ATC system to reduce delays and congestion.” Currently, labor costs account for 80 percent of the FAA’s operating budget, and agency officials are looking back at a 1
Defending its plans to halt around-the-clock technical staffing of the Pico del Este long-range radar in Puerto Rico, the FAA said today that the change will not affect coverage or safety in the Caribbean region.
A study of five commercialized ATC providers by the Government Accountability Office concludes that the safety of air navigation services “has remained the same or improved” compared with when they were operated as noncommercial government agencies.
The FAA proposed today to make permanent the so-called temporary flight restrictions in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. The restrictions and the current air defense identification zone (ADIZ) would be known as the National Defense Airspace. The Washington ADIZ and another over New York City were established in February 2002, ostensibly as temporary measures, and the New York City ADIZ has since been eliminated.
General aviation trade groups based in the Washington, D.C. area have joined with a disparate group of mostly rural communities, organizations and the volunteer-pilot Air Care Alliance in battling the Bush Administration’s plan to hike fuel taxes and institute a series of user fees to help fund the FAA and the NextGen ATC system.
The National Air Traffic Controllers Association (Natca) is placing the burden of the NTSB’s recommendations squarely on the FAA. “Controller schedules were imposed on the controller workforce last September with little to no input [from controllers], let alone negotiations,” said a Natca spokesman. He dismissed FAA statements that controller schedules are “negotiated” with the union and that schedule changes require approval from employees.
The NTSB issued a series of recommendations this week asking the FAA and the National Air Traffic Controllers Association to tighten regulations and procedures pertaining to controller vigilance, training and fatigue.