With India’s airlines still mired in losses, the country’s new budget, announced on July 11, did little to address some of the aviation industry’s most pressing concerns. It offered nothing on reforms in taxation on aviation fuel and maintenance, repair and overhaul—long issues of contention the aviation industry hoped India’s new government would address.
Airbus has begun airline crew training for its A350XWB customers about six months ahead of the new twin-aisle twinjet’s entry into service, scheduled for late this year, according to chief test pilot Peter Chandler, who flew the aircraft on its maiden flight in June 2013. He reports that the training syllabus has been developed and that the first A350 pilot course was under way last month, with access to a full flight simulator. Launch customer Qatar Airways and Singapore Airlines have received demonstration flights.
There were 67,311 business aviation flights in Europe last month, and while this was a “seasonal leap” of 9 percent over May, it was still down 0.9 percent from a year ago, according to data released today by business aviation research and consulting firm WingX Advance. “June’s decline completed a negative second quarter and means year-to-date flight activity [in Europe] is 0.4 percent lower than in 2013,” it noted.
A female passenger died and three flight attendants were injured on June 24 when unidentified gunmen fired on a Pakistan International Airlines Airbus A310 flying at approximately 5,000 feet and carrying 170 passengers. Reports say between four and eight bullets pierced the aircraft’s cabin as it overflew Badhber in the Peshawar region on approach to the local airport.
Asiana Airlines released a statement on June 24 closely following the NTSB’s finding of probable cause for the July 6, 2013 crash of Flight 214 at San Francisco International Airport. The South Korean airline said, “The NTSB made four training recommendations to Asiana, all of which Asiana has already implemented. We believe the NTSB has properly recognized the multiple factors that contributed to the accident, including the complexities of the autothrottle and autopilot systems, which the agency found were inadequately described by Boeing in its training and operational manuals.”
IT provider Sita has begun using new technologies such as Apple’s iBeacon to provide real-time information on mobile devices to help passengers move seamlessly across airports to board flights on time. American Airlines has become the first carrier to try the Sita common-use beacon registry, launched at the recent Sita Air Transport IT summit in Brussels.
Chinese carriers have canceled several flights to Kota Kinabalu in response to poor market demand and safety concerns following a spate of kidnappings of Taiwanese and Chinese tourists in the east Malaysian state of Sabah since April.
The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board has determined that Asiana Flight 214 crashed on July 6 last year at San Francisco International Airport because the flight crew mismanaged the approach and inadequately monitored airspeed. Announcing the findings at a meeting on Tuesday in Washington, D.C., the Board also found that the complexities of the autothrottle and autopilot flight director systems and the crew’s misunderstanding of those systems contributed to the accident.
Boeing Business Jets announced an order on Tuesday for a BBJ 777-300ER to an undisclosed customer. This is the second widebody bizliner order for the company this year, it said. Since Boeing Business Jets introduced the 747-8 and 787 in 2006, widebody airplanes have accounted for nearly 40 percent of the total net orders at the division. The BBJ 777 will be delivered green to the customer’s completion center of choice for outfitting.
Singapore Airlines (SIA) confirmed to AIN that it has a so-called “pass over” policy under which it reserves pilot jobs on its Airbus A380 fleet almost exclusively for Singaporean citizens. The policy means that a Singaporean pilot, irrespective of his seniority number, will be preferred for A380 vacancies over expatriate colleagues.