FlightSafety International expects its Embraer Legacy 500 simulator to receive FAA and EASA approval by the end of this month. The Legacy 500 simulator recently received level-C qualification from Brazil aviation agency ANAC. Pilot training is scheduled to begin in November at FlightSafety’s St. Louis learning center and maintenance technician training on the Legacy 500 is slated to start early next year.
Accidents, Safety, Security and Training
News about significant aircraft accidents and information from accident reports; information on safety procedures and concerns; crew, passenger, aircraft and airport security issues; and news about simulators and training procedures.
The number of fatalities from business jet accidents in the first nine months outpaced those from the same period last year, despite a decline in the number of nonfatal accidents for jets and turboprops this year.
According to preliminary statistics compiled by AIN, 15 people died in four accidents involving U.S.-registered business jets in the first nine months of this year. In the same period last year 13 people were killed, also in four accidents. All eight of the fatal accidents in the two periods befell jets operating under Part 91.
Turboprop aircraft manufacturer Daher-Socata issued Service Information 2014-008, “Review of High-altitude Operations,” in the wake of the loss of N900TN, a TBM900 that crashed with two on board in open water off the northeast coast of Jamaica on September 5. Cabin depressurization and/or hypoxia are suspected factors in the accident.
Garmin’s angle of attack (AOA) system for general aviation aircraft is now shipping after recently receiving FAA approval. The system includes the GI 260 AOA indicator, GAP 26 angle of attack probe and GSU 25 air data computer, which combine to display safety-enhancing AOA and audible alerts throughout critical phases of flight. Price for the system starts at $1,499, and customers can choose from a variety of packages that accommodate 14V and 28V aircraft.
The NTSB is faulting the pilot for the fatal air tour crash of a Blue Hawaiian Helicopters Airbus EC130B4 that went down in heavy rain and limited visibility on the island of Molokai on Nov. 10, 2011. The crash killed pilot Nathan Cline and his four passengers.
The comment deadline has been extended 90 days, from October 8 to January 6, on a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) published in July that seeks to amend qualification standards for some flight simulation training devices (FSTDs), specifically those capable of reproducing extended flight envelope and adverse weather training.
Airbus Brazilian subsidiary Helibras recently held its second “Operational Safety Days,” filling São Paulo’s Anhembi Morumbi University auditorium to its 300-seat capacity. “We’ll need a bigger place next year,” Helibras safety manager Antonio Modesto told AIN, describing the helicopter safety event as “the realization of a personal dream” with full company support.
The Japan Transport Safety Board has concluded its investigation into the overheating of the lithium-ion main ship battery aboard a Boeing 787 last year without reaching a definitive conclusion on the cause. However, the report, issued on Thursday, said that “inappropriate” testing might have contributed to the Jan. 16, 2013 incident, which led to a worldwide grounding of the Dreamliner fleet until Ethiopian Airlines resumed service on April 27 that year. It also pointed to low temperatures as a possible culprit due to lithium metal’s tendency to form deposits on a battery’s electrodes in such conditions.
As concerns grow over whether recent accidents involved hypoxia, including the TBM900 crash on Friday, pilots might wonder about simple tools to help them detect when hypoxia is imminent or occurring. Though pressurized aircraft have alarms that warn when cabin altitude climbs too high, the ubiquitous mobile devices that most pilots carry can also pitch in to help.
The NTSB is calling on the U.S. Coast Guard to work with the Interior Department to mitigate methane discharges from offshore energy platforms in the Gulf of Mexico when helicopters are present. The recommendation follows two power-loss incidents in helicopters that led to accidents, one in 2011 and the other last year, on or near offshore oil platforms.
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