The FAA wants to fine Whirlybird Helicopters $55,125 for allegedly violating DOT drug and alcohol testing regulations. The agency said Whirlybird failed to conduct pre-employment drug tests on eight employees before hiring them to perform safety-sensitive functions on the company’s helicopters. The agency also alleges three of these employees were not in Whirlybird’s random testing pool as required by DOT regulations. The company has 30 days to appeal the penalty.
In a move designed to promote economic development and position a more strongly aligned workforce, Illinois’ Greater Rockford Airport Authority (GRAA) and Rock Valley College (RVC) have combined efforts to create an expanded aviation maintenance technology program.
Rufino Sanchez, a former FAA assistant controller at New York Center, was sentenced in a New York District Court on February 14 to four years probation and six months of home detention for theft of union funds and falsification of records. Sanchez, a 36-year FAA employee, once served as president for the Local R-310 branch of the National Association of Government Employees, a position that gave him unfettered access to union funds. Sanchez used union money to cover personal expenses and also filed false reports to the U.S. Labor Department about the union’s finances.
JSfirm.com, an online aviation-specific employment service, has released the results of its fifth annual hiring trends survey here at Heli-Expo. Based on responses from 400 companies across various sectors of the industry, the survey not only looked back at the results from the past year but noted some positive indications for the coming year as well. “This annual survey has proven to be accurate in past years at forecasting the hiring trends and is eagerly anticipated by the aviation industry,” said company manager Jeff Richards.
Air ambulance outfitter Spectrum Aeromed (Booth No. 3628) will be distributing approximately $100,000 in profit sharing funds to 21 employees at its Fargo, N.D. headquarters, based on its continuing trend of revenue increase, the company announced. “We’ve experienced exponential growth for three consecutive years and we’re fortunate to have the opportunity to reward our team of dedicated employees with profit sharing as a result of their hard work,” noted company owner Dean Atchison.
Thirty-four students have graduated from the Aircraft Structures Training Program founded in part by the West Virginia-based aviation employment services company HQ Aero Management (US), which is exhibiting here at Booth No. 3530. HQ Aero entered into a partnership with Workforce West Virginia and local aviation companies to create the eight-week training program at Pierpont Community and Technical College in Fairmont, W.Va. in 2013. The fourth class of 12 students will graduate in March.
Facing “the perfect storm” of workforce issues, the aerospace industry has long needed tools to help attract future leaders and then assist them in finding the collegiate program and degree track needed to enter the industry, Tara Harl, president of Aviation Workforce Development (AWD), told AIN.
The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) has rebuffed attacks on its safety record made in the Scandinavian media in relation to Norwegian Air Shuttle’s controversial plan to operate under an Irish air operator certificate even though none of its services will depart from Ireland. The authority condemned what it said are “misguided” statements.
Growth is the word in the Asia-Pacific region, and since 2010 Jet Aviation Singapore has more than doubled the number of skilled workers it employs; three-quarters of the new employees are local hires. To meet growing demand for business aviation services in the region, Jet Aviation Singapore has raised its employee headcount to 123 from 59 in 2010 and plans to hire 13 more aviation professionals this year.
As maintenance facilities worldwide struggle to hire enough technicians to keep up with demand, some have opted to train their own. Marshall Aviation Services recently honored four apprentices at an awards ceremony at its facility in Broughton, North Wales.