The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is redoubling efforts to help African airlines improve the continent’s poor accident rate. “It is no secret that the biggest gap [in airline safety performance] is in Africa,” said IATA director general Tony Tyler at the group’s international operations conference in Vienna on April 15. “Compared with a world rate of 0.20 Western-built jet hull loss accidents per million sectors in 2012, Africa’s rate was 3.71.”
Boeing cleared one of the last hurdles in its campaign to return the 787 to service Friday afternoon, when the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration announced it had approved its design modifications for the airplane’s battery system. The FAA said the changes address risks at the battery cell level, the battery level and the aircraft level.
The General and Regional Aviation Committee of the U.S.-China Aviation Cooperation Program is set to deliver a key report to officials at China’s CAAC aviation authority officials next Wednesday about general aviation operations in China. It is expected to represent a key step in opening up lower airspace in the country.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has made progress in delivering some of the operational improvements that are envisioned by the NextGen ATC modernization effort. But to demonstrate those improvements sooner, the agency has also made “trade-offs” that could limit their overall benefit to airlines in the coming years, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
While most aviation safety sources have identified loss of control (LOC) as the leading cause of accidents in the past few years, controlled flight into terrain (CFIT) “is making a strong comeback,” according to Flight Safety Foundation fellow Jim Burin.
As expected, President Obama’s budget for Fiscal Year 2014, released yesterday, includes a proposed aviation user fee–just as previous budgets have since 2007 when the Bush Administration first floated the idea.
Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) plan to introduce a bill Wednesday morning intended to prohibit the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) from closing 149 federal contract tower facilities under budget sequestration, an industry source confirmed to AIN. A companion measure is also expected to be introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives.
In an effort to deliver operational improvements more quickly, the FAA has made “trade-offs” in establishing performance-based navigation (PBN) procedures that could limit their benefits in the near term, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
Just days before the stranglehold of U.S. government budget sequestration was set to douse the lights at the first 24 contract control towers this week, the FAA last Friday issued a temporary reprieve to any closures until June 15. The agency said it needs more time to address the mounting legal actions the imminent closings have triggered.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) recently identified 100 safety risks across its aviation, marine and rail areas of responsibility, 36 of which relate to transport-category aviation. The ATSB report covers the period July 2009 through June 2012. Most risks were operationally focused within the aircraft itself, with a much smaller percentage related to ATC.
Air transport risks in 2011and 2012 also outweighed those identified as related to general aviation by three to one. Only five investigations, however, were categorized as complex (serious).