Cypriot and Italian salvage crews today found the flight data recorder from the Tuninter ATR 72-200 that crashed off the northern coast of Sicily on August 6. Yesterday they retrieved the cockpit voice recorder and recovered the bodies of three missing occupants among the remaining wreckage at the bottom of the Tyrrhenian Sea, 14 nm northeast of Palermo.
Lou Pepper, president of Atlantic Aviation, today told AIN he was “saddened and disheartened” by the lack of news about how the Atlantic FBO at New Orleans Lakefront Airport weathered Hurricane Katrina. “You’d think this was 1955 rather than 2005,” he said.
The FAA has decided not to require the use of child-restraint systems (CRSs) on aircraft, but is amending regulations to allow the use of CRSs approved under a TC, STC or TSO. Current regulations do not allow the use of CRSs other than those that meet the standards for automobiles.
Following the fatal crashes of a Piper Navajo on September 1 in Bogotá and an MD-82 operated by Colombian carrier West Caribbean Airlines on August 16 in Venezuela, the Colombian Civil Aviation Authority (Aerocivil) ordered the “indefinite suspension” of all general aviation operations at Guaymaral and El Dorado International Airports in Bogotá, Alfonso Bonilla International Airport in Cali and Jose Maria Cordoba International and Olaya Herrer
In response to what it referred to as “inaccurate speculation” in the media and elsewhere about the status of fuel supplies in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the FAA said in a statement released Thursday, “We are continuously canvassing airports, airlines, and jet fuel providers to ensure sufficient supplies are on hand to support normal commercial operations.
Even though weather-related accidents are not frequent, they account for a large number of aviation fatalities. According to the NTSB, only 6 percent of general aviation accidents are weather-related but they account for more than 25 percent of all GA fatalities annually. NTSB investigators collected data from 72 GA accidents that occurred between August 2003 and April 2004.
Accident investigators have determined that Tunisian mechanics replaced a faulty fuel gauge in the ATR 72 that crashed off the northeast coast of Sicily on August 6 with the wrong model, a mistake that apparently led the doomed airplane’s pilots to upload less fuel than they needed to complete their trip from Bari, Italy, to Djerba, Tunisia.
The simultaneous dual flameout of a Garuda Indonesia Airlines 737 and its subsequent ditching on Jan. 16, 2002, has led the NTSB to issue two recommendations targeting FAA turbofan rain and hail ingestion engine certification standards. The CFM56-3-B1 engines failed when the aircraft flew through a thunderstorm and encountered “extremely heavy” precipitation and hail on the approach.
According to the NTSB’s factual report of the March 16 ground collision at the Signature Flight Support ramp at Newark Liberty International Airport, a Boeing Business Jet started to taxi without ground assistance and then hit a GIV preparing to taxi with ground assistance. The Safety Board reported that, “according to an FAA inspector, ground personnel were in place to assist the Gulfstream for its taxi out of the ramp area.
NTSB acting chairman Mark Rosenker said the FAA’s airport movement area safety system (AMASS) is not adequate to prevent serious runway collisions. Citing several recent near-collisions at Boston and New York airports where AMASS allegedly did not perform, Rosenker noted that the situations were instead resolved by flight crew actions sometimes bordering on the heroic–and luck.