BEECHCRAFT KING AIR B200, LEOMINSTER, MASS., APRIL 4, 2003–The NTSB determined that the pilot’s low-altitude maneuver with an excessive bank angle and his failure to maintain airspeed, which resulted in an inadvertent stall and subsequent crash into a building, caused the loss of King Air N257CG.
Singapore has established a program for pilots, air traffic controllers, mechanics and others to report aviation safety incidents confidentially and without fear of prosecution for inadvertent regulatory violations. Called Sincair (for Singapore confidential aviation incident reporting), the program is similar to the NASA-operated Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) in the U.S. and programs operating in the UK, Australia and Canada.
The Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA) praised U.S. House of Representatives Aviation subcommittee chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) for urging the FAA to re-evaluate its recent proposal to subject employees of thousands of small businesses that indirectly serve the aviation industry to mandatory drug and alcohol testing.
On January 25 the NTSB Office of Aviation Safety presented a special investigation report on EMS and helicopter EMS (HEMS) operations, attributing a number of EMS accidents to the safety deficiencies allegedly inherent in the less stringent Part 91 rules, which are in place when no patients or organs are on board. The agency invested 3,500 man hours investigating the 55 most recent accidents, 35 of which occurred without patients aboard.
Pilots making submissions to NASA’s Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) should be aware that two people cannot receive immunity with a single submission.
The FAA today released a new fact sheet, “Safer Flying in Icing Conditions,” to remind operators that aircraft icing is a “continuing concern in all parts of aviation, from small planes to jumbo jets.” To combat icing-related accidents, the FAA is employing a multi-pronged approach to icing issues, using immediate safety actions and longer-term rule changes.
Excel-Jet of Monument, Colo., is suing the FAA over the June 2006 crash of its proof-of-concept Sport-Jet, which was destroyed on takeoff from Colorado Springs Airport. According to witnesses, the single-engine composite jet rolled to the left, hit the runway and cartwheeled down the runway just after takeoff.
Virtually all cargo-dedicated airplanes will be required to have traffic alert and collision avoidance systems type II (TCAS II) installed by December 31 next year under rulemaking published last month. Under a previous rule, the TCAS requirement was based on passenger seating capacity and therefore excluded cargo-only airplanes.
Aviation’s first two-in-one traffic and terrain awareness and warning system gained TSO authorization early last month, clearing the way for the first installations of the device, probably in May. Approval of T2CAS, a $170,000 (list price) safety system that combines TCAS 2000 with a class-A TAWS in a single box, represents the first certification of a product from Phoenix-based ACSS, a joint company owned by L-3 Communications and Thales.
The 24 deadly seconds of the Sept. 14, 1999, Dassault Falcon 900 in-flight upset are under scrutiny by the Athens First Degree Court. The trial, which started May 13, was expected to last several days and was still ongoing at press time. The court has been asked to decide if the accident was due to pilot error, a technical malfunction or a combination of the two.