As Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based Silver Airways became the third U.S. regional airline this month to announce significant service cuts due to what it called a nationwide pilot shortage, the Regional Airline Association amplified its message of opposition to a new rule requiring 1,500 hours of flying experience for new-hire first officers.
Boeing delivered a bullish market forecast for airplane sales in the Asia-Pacific region on February 10, citing strong anticipated economic and passenger growth over the next 20 years. The manufacturer expects that the region’s gross domestic product will grow at 4.5 percent annually over the next two decades, fueling annual passenger traffic growth of 6.3 percent and cargo growth of 5.8 percent.
Year-end 2013 financial results from the newly reconstituted American Airlines Group have quickly established that the long-awaited merger of AMR Corporation with US Airways has resulted in a carrier more viable than the sum of its previously separate parts.
The U.S. Supreme Court last Monday overturned a lower court decision to award $1.2 million to former Air Wisconsin pilot William Hoeper for defamation, ruling that the Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA) ensures that airlines enjoy immunity from liability in reporting security concerns about an individual to the Transportation Security Administration as long as they do not knowingly disclose false, inaccurate or misleading information.
A United Airlines Boeing 777 turned back to Newark International Airport 45 minutes after departure on January 16 after five flight attendants were injured following an encounter with severe turbulence. The cabin crew had just begun service activities at the time the turbulence hit. No passengers were injured as all were still belted in their seats following the takeoff.
Patrick Cau, a German citizen and former United Airlines flight attendant, has been sentenced to 18 months in a U.S. federal prison for making eight false bomb threats against United Airlines flights. Cau was fired by the airline about a year before the first threats began surfacing from a variety of U.S. cities in late 2012. Cau must also pay nearly $314,000 in restitution to both his former employer and the Los Angeles Police Department for expenses related to the threats.
Africa’s airlines need to wake up to competition from outside the continent, form alliances that allow players both big and small to interact for the greater good, and realize that governments are often no longer interested in protecting domestic carriers (as they see economy-boosting tourist arrivals as a more important priority), according to Nick Fadugba, CEO of African Aviation Services.
The captain of a United Airlines flight died after being transported to a local hospital in Boise, Idaho, on September 27. The pilot suffered a heart attack while in command of a Boeing 737 en route to Seattle from Houston with 166 people aboard. The flight landed safely under the command of the aircraft’s first officer, with no other injuries reported.
The Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) joint venture has in recent weeks signed additional airline customers for its Boeing 737NG split scimitar winglet modification since receiving a firm commitment from launch customer United Airlines in January. The new winglet design improves upon the aerodynamic efficiency of APB’s blended winglet for the 737NG, enabling an estimated 2-percent extra reduction in fuel consumption.
By the end of this year, the Aviation Partners Boeing joint venture is expected to receive certification of the new split-scimitar winglet for the Boeing 737. This modification should be of interest to Boeing BBJ owners, too. A United Airlines 737-800 equipped with the split scimitar winglet made its first flight on July 16 at Boeing’s Everett, Washington plant. United is retrofitting its 737-800 and -900ER fleet with the new winglets, starting early next year after certification is complete.
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