Bombardier Aerospace unveiled a series of updates to its CRJ900 regional jet during a June 5 event at the Signature Flight Support FBO at Washington Dulles International Airport. The 76-seat CRJ900 NextGen on display there became the first to enter revenue service on June 7, when Northwest Airlines subsidiary Mesaba Airlines flew it to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport from Minneapolis.
Delta Air Lines
The Department of Transportation has fined Comair $75,000 for misleading passengers about the cause of the rash of Christmas Day 2004 flight cancellations that left thousands stranded. A flood of schedule changes resulting from an ice storm caused the computer failure that ultimately resulted in the cancellation of 1,100 flights that day.
Bombardier Aerospace is showing its CRJ900 NextGen regional-jet here in 76-seat guise and the uniform of Northwest Airlines subsidiary Mesaba Airlines less than two weeks after a sister machine was unveiled in Washington, D.C. For regionals like Mesaba, the NextGen CRJ “will have substantially lower seat-mile costs than [competing] Embraer regional jets,” according to commercial-operations vice president Rod Williams.
Boeing’s Alteon Training subsidiary has signed an agreement with Northwest Airlines (NWA) to provide flight training on seven aircraft types at the carrier’s Eagan, Minnesota headquarters. The agreement includes the introduction of a 787 full-flight simulator at the NWA training center by April 2008 and exclusive rights allowing Alteon to market excess simulator training time to all 787 customers.
An April 10 safety recommendation issued by the NTSB calls for the FAA to revise its policies related to air traffic controller work schedules to account for disruptive sleep patterns and the accumulation of so-called sleep debt. It also recommends the institution of a training program to educate controllers and schedulers about the incidence and effect of fatigue on performance.
Mesaba Airlines expected to exit bankruptcy during the last week of April, following the approval of its reorganization plan by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Gregory Kishel. The Minneapolis-based Northwest Airlines affiliate filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in October 2005, a month after the major airline itself filed for Chapter 11 and defaulted on its service contract payments to Mesaba.
Northwest Airlines’ newest regional subsidiary, Compass Airlines, planned to launch twice-daily service on May 2 between Minneapolis and Washington Dulles International Airport.
This year’s RAA Convention couldn’t have come at a more appropriate time and place for Memphis, Tenn.’s hometown airline. The proud new owner of a second operating subsidiary and revamped service contract with Northwest Airlines, Pinnacle Airlines has officially shed the manacles of a highly restrictive code-share deal and joined the open market for regional services.
Strong revenue growth has led Delta AirElite, the business aircraft charter division of Delta Air Lines, to introduce a revenue guarantee for aircraft owners who are accepted for enrollment in the company’s aircraft-management program. The company is offering new management clients flight hour guarantees ranging from 200 to 500 hours annually for select aircraft.
Airline travelers on Delta, Northwest and other airlines operating under bankruptcy protection might face longer lines, delays and fuller and less frequent flights, but it’s “business as usual” at Delta’s business jet charter arm, Delta AirElite, according to a spokesman. “There will be no affect on our ability to serve our charter, membership or aircraft management customers,” he said.