The January 5 crash of a Bombardier Challenger 601-3R during the crew’s second attempted landing at Aspen Pitkin County Airport (ASE) has prompted pilots to question both their own limitations and the difficulties involved in landing at the Denver resort. Even under visual conditions, mountains that rise 5,000 to 6,000 feet above field elevation make Aspen a one-way-in, one-way-out airport: land on Runway 15 and depart from Runway 33.
Recently released feed from five of Aspen-Pitkin County Airport’s video cameras shows the January 5 approach and eventual crash of a Bombardier Challenger 601-3R. The infrared videos show the aircraft bouncing high into the air after touchdown, followed by a pronounced nose-over maneuver from which the aircraft never recovered. The copilot was killed in the crash.
The National Business Aviation Association says there will be no FAA E-STMP air traffic slot requirements for any of the Rocky Mountain airports (including Aspen/ASE, Eagle/EGE and Rifle/RIL) during the coming Christmas and New Year holiday season. Parking reservations will not be required, but the group emphasizes that booking a slot is highly recommended because capacity at the airports has not been increased for the busy period.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s Sustainability Program presented West Star Aviation with the Colorado Governor’s Environmental Leadership Program (ELP) Silver Award. It is the third time West Star has received the Silver Award since it was first recognized as a Bronze Achiever in 2010.
While LightSquared emerged from bankruptcy on July 15, one of its first moves was to ask the bankruptcy judge to keep other investors at bay until December, to allow the company to complete its recovery plan. The judge allowed LightSquared until December 6 to complete the process. However, that didn’t stop one Wall Street heavyweight from raising its initial $2 billion bid to acquire the company’s assets to $2.2 billion, in a struggle between two rival billionaires: Charlie Ergen of Dish Networks; and Philip Falcone of Harbinger Investments, which owns LightSquared.
Photographer Mike Sellers shot a thrilling close-up video of the mid-afternoon June 18 tornado that formed over Denver International Airport (KDEN). Winds were later calculated at 100 mph. No one was injured as the storm, which never actually touched down, moved over the airport.
The FAA plans to make changes to some procedures for flights into three Colorado airports–Aspen, Eagle County Regional and Garfield County “Rifle”–for the 2013 to 2014 holiday season, NBAA said. Specifically, the FAA will discontinue use of a legacy air-traffic slot-reservation program for these airports during the November-through-January time frame. In lieu of the air-traffic slot-reservation program, the FAA will manage the traffic volume with other traffic management initiative tools, including miles-in-trail and ground-delay programs.
Kitchener Aero Avionics has completed a new upgrade package for the Cessna 208 Caravan. The heart of the upgrade is an Aspen EFD-1000C3 PFD and Class B Taws. “For hardworking Caravans–especially those in commercial operations–this mod can really make a difference,” said Kitchener president Barry Aylward. The Aspen PFD replaces the problematic and expensive gyros in the Bendix/King KFC 150/225 flight control systems that were originally installed in the 208 fleet.
AgustaWestland’s new eight-ton medium-heavy twin recently completed high/hot testing in Arizona, Colorado and Texas and now heads north. The company expects certification in this year’s second half. AgustaWestland has logged orders for approximately 60 of the new helicopters, primarily from the oil and gas market.
A story in this week’s Loveland, Colo. Reporter Herald says that Allegiant Airlines’ suspension of service from Loveland in August was due to airline CEO Maurice Gallagher’s concern about safety based on too much local air traffic and the airport’s lack of a control tower. Local city officials, as well as representatives of the Transport Workers Union representing Allegiant flight attendants want to know why, if flight safety is the reason for the pullout, the airline plans to continue operating service to Las Vegas through the end of October.
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