The Air Charter Safety Foundation (ACSF) has already reviewed the 2007 preliminary aviation safety statistics released yesterday by the NTSB and found that the data reveals there were no fatal passenger-carrying accidents involving jets flown by on-demand air charter operators or fractional providers.
The events of September 11 and the subsequent economic fallout have tested the competitive mettle of airlines worldwide. Thankfully for those that escaped the fate suffered by the now bankrupt Swissair and Sabena, the hundreds of smaller carriers that comprise the often overlooked regional airline sector have supplied a source of relative strength.
A comparison of the small regional carrier Cape Air to the old television series Wings, which focused on the often humorous doings of a small Cape Cod-based regional airline, is inevitable. In truth, there are some similarities. It is a small operation, by today’s regional airline standards, based in Cape Cod at Barnstable Municipal Airport in Hyannis, Mass.
New York City-based ShAirForce LLC continues to move forward with its plan to become the world’s first fractional operator to offer its clients premium-class-only aircraft with daily nonstop service between high-demand domestic and international city pairs. The company recently released its Web site address (www.ShAirForce.com) and toll-free number, (866) Go-ShAir.
Boeing will delay first flight of the 787, this time by as much as six more months, as it continues to grapple with slower-than-expected completion of work originally meant for suppliers, the company said today. It now expects to fly the first airplane some time during this year’s fourth quarter–at least 14 months later than originally planned.
The Civil Aviation Authority of China (CAAC) has approved plans by China Eastern Airlines and aerospace consortium AVIC I to establish a new regional airline based in Xian. Named Xingfu (Happy) Airlines, the enterprise would involve a 40-percent investment by China Eastern, while AVIC I–the maker of the ARJ21 regional jet–takes the remaining 60 percent.
The Transportation Department’s inspector general issued a report last month that contradicts general aviation’s claim that GA operators are only marginal airspace users. However, the report did support the assertion that GA user groups tend to avoid the large primary metropolitan airports.
David Neeleman’s new Brazilian airline venture appeared to have taken a giant leap toward fruition today, as Embraer announced that the JetBlue founder signed a contract to buy 36 of the 108- to 122-seat E195 jets and take options on another 20. The deal also secured purchase rights on another 20 airplanes, which, if exercised, would raise the total value of the orders to $3 billion.
The successor to Belgium’s Sabena Airlines unveiled its new name last month as talks continued between shareholders in Sabena regional subsidiary Delta Air Transport (DAT) and Virgin Express to save the country’s flag carrier from extinction. Shareholders chose the name SN Brussels Airlines mainly because it allows the financially strapped carrier to retain the Sabena logo and its SN code for flight numbers.
Demonstrating environmental responsibility while remaining operationally viable is the biggest challenge facing business aviation, according to the British Business and General Aviation Association (BBGA). But along with its European colleagues, the UK industry also faces potential difficulties with new security requirements covering border controls and the prospect of wider powers for the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).