Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Piper PA-44-180 Seminole, Hillsboro Aviation Inc., N3062H and Beechcraft V35 Bonanza, N5938S

NTSB Identification: WPR12FA020A
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, October 25, 2011 in St. Paul, OR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/18/2013
Aircraft: PIPER PA-44-180, registration: N3062H
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Uninjured.

NTSB Identification: WPR12FA020B
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, October 25, 2011 in St. Paul, OR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/18/2013
Aircraft: BEECH V35, registration: N5938S
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

A Beech V35 and Piper PA-44-180 collided in flight in a common practice area for airwork. The flight instructor in the Piper reported that at an altitude of about 7,500 feet mean sea level (msl), he told the pilot receiving instruction to conduct a simulated emergency descent. The instructor stated that the pilot receiving instruction executed the simulated emergency descent and recovered to cruise flight at an altitude of about 4,500 feet msl before they continued toward a local airport. As the flight continued, the instructor observed a single-engine airplane that appeared to be on a converging course, and he transmitted a position report on the intended destination airport's common traffic advisory frequency. The instructor stated that after making a slight heading change and descent, he re-established visual contact with a single-engine airplane, which was then behind and above the Piper’s position. He then scanned the area ahead of the Piper’s position from left to right. The instructor said he then felt a jolt along with a violent shudder in the airplane followed by an uncommanded left roll and yaw. The instructor took control of the airplane and made a forced landing to a nearby open field. 

Review of recorded radar data revealed that the Piper was on a northwesterly heading at 7,700 feet msl when it initiated a right descending turn. Meanwhile, the Beech was traveling on a continuous northeasterly heading at an altitude of about 2,400 feet msl. The last recorded radar target for each airplane before the collision showed that the airplanes were on converging paths; the Piper was at 2,800 feet msl on a northeasterly heading and maneuvering west of the Beech, which was at an altitude of about 2,400 feet msl on a north-northeasterly heading. During examination of the recovered wreckage, transfer marks were identified consistent with the radar-derived collision angle. Both airplanes were operating in visual conditions when they collided.

Based on relative positions of the airplanes, and given the other airplane traffic in the area, it seems likely that the single-engine airplane the Piper instructor observed before the collision was not the Beech with which the collision occurred. It could not be determined if either pilot could see the other just before the collision; however, based on the airplanes’ relative positions and flight attitudes, it seems unlikely. The Piper was maneuvering in a left bank at the time and it is likely that the Piper’s wing and engine blocked the Beech from the Piper pilot's field of vision. Additionally, the Beech pilot’s view of the Piper, which was above and to the left of his flight path, would likely have been blocked by the airplane’s door post and cabin roof structure.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot was unable to see the other aircraft to avoid a collision.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT 

On October 25, 2011, about 1610 Pacific daylight time, a Piper PA-44-180, N3062H, registered to and operated by Hillsboro Aviation, Hillsboro, Oregon, as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 instructional flight and a Beech V35, N5938S, registered to and operated by a private individual as a Title 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight, collided midair about 5 miles northeast of St. Paul, Oregon. The Beech was destroyed and the Piper was substantially damaged. The airline transport rated pilot in the Beech sustained fatal injuries. The certified flight instructor (CFI) and private pilot receiving instruction in the Piper were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for either flight. The local flight for the Piper originated from the Mc Minnville Municipal Airport (MMV), Mc Minnville, Oregon, about 1536, destined for the Aurora State Airport, Aurora, Oregon. The local flight for the Beech originated from the Stark's Twin Oaks Airport, Hillsboro, Oregon, at 1539. 

In a written statement to the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge, the CFI onboard the Piper reported that following an uneventful departure from MMV, they climbed to an altitude of about 5,500 feet mean sea level (msl), and conducted a series of maneuvers including slow flight, steep turns, and stalls, prior to climbing to an altitude of about 7,500 feet msl. He then briefed the pilot receiving instruction on the procedures for a simulated emergency descent while conducting various clearing turns and announcing their intentions on the common traffic advisory frequency (CTAF) for the practice area (122.75 mhz) and UAO (122.7 mHz). The CFI stated that the pilot receiving instruction then executed the simulated emergency descent, and recovered to cruise flight at an altitude of about 4,500 feet msl. The flight then proceeded on a northerly heading towards UAO with the intent of entering the airport traffic pattern. The CFI added that while on a northerly heading, he switched to the UAO CTAF and announced their location, altitude, and intentions. 

The CFI further reported that while maintaining an altitude of 4,500 feet msl, he was scanning the area for traffic and observed a single-engine airplane at the 5:30 to 6 o'clock area and above their altitude. The CFI stated that the traffic was on a convergence course towards their location and appeared to be in a slightly steeper than average descent. He instructed the pilot receiving instruction to initiate a left descending turn in an effort to avoid the observed traffic and transmitted a position report on the CTAF for UAO. Following an approximate 10 to 20-degree heading change, the CFI re-established visual contact with the single-engine aircraft that was behind and above his position. The CFI then looked forward and scanned from the 9 o'clock to 3 o'clock position. Subsequently, he felt a jolt along with a violent shudder in the airplane followed by an un-commanded left roll and yaw. The CFI immediately took control of the airplane, and thought they had possibly struck geese. He then initiated an emergency forced landing to a nearby open field.

Witnesses located in various aircraft adjacent to the accident site reported that prior to the collision; they observed the Beech V35 on a northerly course in cruise flight. 

Review of recorded radar data obtained from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) revealed that at 2208:15, the Piper was traveling in a northwesterly heading at 7,700 feet msl until 2308:39, where a descent was observed. The data depicted the Piper continuing a descent and initiating a right descending turn while the Beech was traveling on a northeasterly heading at an altitude of 2,400 feet msl. The last recorded radar target at 2310:03 for each airplane prior to the collision depicted both airplanes on a converging path over the Champoeg State Heritage Area. The Piper was observed at an altitude of 2,800 feet on a northeasterly heading located west of the Beech, which was at an altitude of 2,400 feet msl on a north-northeasterly heading. Further review of the radar data revealed a third airplane located south of both accident airplanes at an altitude of 3,900 feet.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION 

Piper PA-44-180

The certified flight instructor of the Piper, age 31, held a commercial pilot certificate with airplane single-engine land, airplane multiengine land, and instrument airplane ratings. He also possessed a flight instructor certificate with airplane single-engine land, airplane multiengine land, and instrument airplane ratings. A first-class airman medical certificate was issued on July 1, 2011, with no limitations. The pilot reported on his most recent medical certificate application that he had accumulated 1,600 total flight hours. 

The pilot receiving instruction in the Piper PA-44-180, age 23, held a private pilot certificate with airplane single-engine land and instrument airplane ratings. A first-class airman medical certificate was issued on July 29, 2010, with no limitations. The pilot reported on his most recent medical certificate application that he had accumulated 55 total flight hours. 

Beech V35 

The pilot of the Beech, age 58, held an airline transport pilot certificate with airplane multiengine land ratings and a commercial pilot certificate with an airplane single-engine land rating. He also possessed a flight instructor certificate with airplane single-engine land, airplane multiengine land, and instrument airplane ratings. A third-class airman medical certificate was issued on March 19, 2011, with the limitation "must have available glasses for near vision." The pilot reported on his most recent medical certificate application that he had accumulated 2,250 total flight hours. 

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION 

Piper PA-44-180

The four-seat, low-wing, retractable-gear, twin-engine airplane, serial number (S/N) 44-7995165, was manufactured in 1978. It was powered by a Lycoming O-360-E1A6D (serial number L-152-77T) and Lycoming LO-360-E1A6D (serial number L-430-72T) engines, rated at 180 horse power. The airplane was also equipped with a Hartzell model HC-C2YR-2CLEUF and HC-C2YR-2CEUF adjustable pitch propellers. The paint theme on the airplane was predominately a maroon red color along the bottom of half of the fuselage and engine nacelles, with white along the upper portion of the fuselage, engine nacelles, and wings.

Beech V35

The four-seat, low-wing, retractable-gear, single-engine airplane, serial number (S/N) D-8145, was manufactured in 1966. It was powered by a Continental Motors IO-520-B (serial number D-8145) and, rated at 285 horse power. The airplane was also equipped with a Hartzell three-bladed adjustable pitch propeller. Review of photographs prior to the accident indicated that the paint theme on the airplane was predominately in white color with blue and green stripes along the fuselage from the nose to the empennage. The leading edge of the wings and bottom portions of the wing tip tanks were blue in color. The ruddervators were white in color, and the elevators and trim tabs were blue in color. Review of FAA records revealed that the V35 was equipped with pulsating high intensity lighting.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION 

A review of recorded data from the Aurora State Airport, Aurora, Oregon, automated weather observation station, located about 5 miles east of the accident site, revealed at 1553, conditions were wind from 360 degrees at 7 knots, visibility 10 statute miles, clear sky, temperature 14 degrees Celsius, dew point 4 degrees Celsius, and an altimeter setting of 30.37 inches of mercury. 

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION 

Examination of the accident site revealed that the wreckage of the two airplanes were scattered over an area of about 2 miles. Various debris including the empennage, tail cone, and rear seat, from the Beech and nose cowling from the Piper were located throughout campgrounds A and B within the Champoeg State Heritage Area.

The Beech came to rest upright within a heavily wooded area about 0.3 miles north of the Champoeg State Heritage Area and was mostly consumed by fire. The Piper came to rest upright in an open field about 1.5 miles west of Champoeg State Heritage Area. An approximate 6 foot portion of the roof and fuselage structure of the Beech was located about 120 feet southeast of the main wreckage of the Piper.

Wreckages of both aircraft were recovered to a secure location for further examination.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION 

The Oregon State Medical Examiner conducted an autopsy on the pilot of the Beech on October 26, 2011. The medical examiner determined that the cause of death was “blunt force injuries.”

The FAA's Civil Aeromedical Institute (CAMI) in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed toxicology tests on the pilot. According to CAMI's report, volatiles and drugs were tested, and had negative results.

TESTS AND RESEARCH

Review of the accident area on both the FAA Visual Flight Rules (VFR) Sectional Chart and FAA Airport/Facility Directory (A/FD) revealed that the accident site was located about 7 miles southeast of an outlined high intensity flight training area, as noted within the AFD. In addition, numerous airports with various CTAF frequencies were located within 15 miles of the accident site.

On October 28, 2011, at the facilities of Garmin AT, Salem, Oregon, the Garmin 430 GPS/Radio unit and Garmin SL30 radio were removed from the Piper. Both units were installed on a test bench with power subsequently applied. The primary active radio frequency observed on the Garmin 430 was 122.700 Mhz. and the secondary non active frequency was 123.000 Mhz. The Global Positioning System (GPS) position captured within the Garmin 430 was N45 15.03', W122 52.64'. The primary active radio frequency on the Garmin SL30 was 135.670 Mhz, and the non-active secondary frequency was 118.520 Mhz. The radios from the Beech were not tested due to the extensive impact and fire damage sustained and an active radio frequency could not be determined. 

Examination of the recovered wreckages of both the airplanes was conducted on July 25, 2012, at the facilities of Nu Venture Air Services, Dallas, Oregon. 

Examination of the recovered Beech wreckage revealed that the inboard areas of both the left and right wings and forward fuselage structure exhibited thermal and fire damage. The separated approximate 6-foot portion of fuselage structure that was located near the wreckage of the Piper exhibited scratches and maroon paint transfer marks along the upper roof structure and above the upper left and right side window cutouts. The scratches and paint transfer marks were measured at an approximate 59 degree angle from left to right along the centerline of the fuselage. 

The right aft side of the fuselage, associated roof structure, which included the area of the registration number, aft and upper areas of the right baggage door frame was separated from the fuselage. The forward upper area of the baggage frame structure exhibited an area of displaced structure in an outward bend (from left to right when looking forward from the tail of the airplane) with a material black in color smeared within the fracture surface. An area of maroon paint transfer, oriented on an approximate 59 degree angle from the airplane centerline (from left to right) was observed on the white upper portion of the separated structure. 

Examination of the recovered Piper wreckage revealed blue paint transfer located on the bottom side of the fuselage about 5 inches aft of the aft spar. 

The forward portion of the fuselage from the nose cowling bulkhead exhibited inward crushing at an approximate 45 degree angle, which extended about 8 inches inward along the right side of the fuselage, and contained embedded organic debris (dirt and grass). Two antennas on the bottom side of the fuselage (one forward near the nose cowling bulkhead and one aft) were separated from their mounts and not located. An area of white paint transfer was observed on the right side of the fuselage just aft of the nose cowling bulkhead. When looking along the fuselage from forward to aft, the nose structure appeared to be displaced slightly towards the left wing.

The left wing remained intact, and the engine remained secure via its mounts. The flap and aileron remained attached via their respective mounts. The left propeller assembly remained attached to the left engine and left wing. A maroon paint transfer was observed on the left propeller spinner. One blade exhibited a leading edge gouge with some slight blue paint noted about 7 to 10 inches from the root of the blade, and the propeller blade tip was separated. The opposing blade exhibited a leading edge scratch and maroon paint transfer about 16 to 17 inches outboard of the propeller blade root, and the propeller blade tip was separated. Both separated portions of the propeller tips were located within the wreckage of the Beech. The left main landing gear was separated from the strut assembly. The strut assembly and landing gear assembly had organic debris (dirt, grass) embedded within them. The pitot tube located on the outboard portion of the wing was pushed upward into the wing structure.

The right wing remained intact, and the engine remained secure via its mounts. The flap and aileron remained attached via their respective mounts. Upward bending and damage was noted to the right flap and aft portion of the right engine nacelle. A small area of blue paint transfer was observed on the right main landing gear strut.


  Beech V35, N5938S

  Piper PA44, N3062H


WILSONVILLE -- The twin-engine Piper flown by a Beaverton flight instructor and a Hillsboro pilot under instruction dived down on the smaller aircraft, smashing it to pieces and sending its pilot crashing to his death, police said Wednesday.

Capt. Ken Summers, Yamhill County Sheriff's Office spokesman, said witnesses to Tuesday's midair collision northwest of Aurora State Airport told investigators that the larger Piper PA-44 Seminole was executing training maneuvers in the area, making a series of rapid ascents and descents shortly after 4 p.m., when it came down upon a Beech Bonanza V35 that had taken off from the Twin Oaks Airpark in Hillsboro.

The Piper's underside then struck the Beech.

"It was literally cut in two," Summers said.

The Beechcraft -- in pieces -- then careened out of control and spiraled into ground. Pilot Stephen L. Watson, 58, of Beaverton, a retired Oregon State Police sergeant, was killed.

The crippled Piper then limped to Champoeg State Heritage area, where it made an emergency landing in an open field just west of the park. The plane, registered to Hillsboro Aviation, appeared to have damaged landing gear.

Flight instructor Travis Thompson, 31, of Beaverton and student Henrik Murer Kalberg, 23, a resident of Holmestrand, Norway, living in Beaverton, walked away uninjured. Social media websites identify Kalberg as a student, runner, tennis player and instrument-rated general aviation pilot.

Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board interviewed the men Wednesday but declined to disclose what they learned. Thompson did not return a call requesting comment. The Oregonian was unable to reach Kalberg.

On Wednesday, investigators began what could be a yearlong slog -- collecting evidence and testimony, then analyzing the results in hopes of reconstructing the events.

The NTSB, aided by investigators from the Federal Aviation Administration, Oregon State Police and sheriff's deputies from Yamhill and Marion counties concentrated Wednesday on interviewing witnesses to the collision and the crash. Clackamas County deputies submitted reconnaissance video they shot while flying the sheriff's office airplane over the crash site. FAA investigators sorted the radio and radar data from Portland International Airport

Investigators also collected, bagged and documented parts of the Beech Bonanza, turning them over to a company the NTSB contracted to help with crash reconstruction. The wings, engine and cockpit came down near Wilsonville road, just west of Earlwood Road. A tail section was found 40 feet up in a tree.

Joshua Cawthra, who is leading the NTSB investigation, stressed that the area of the collision is not under formal air traffic control, and the pilots were flying by "visual flight rules."

"Part of the role of a pilot is to see and avoid other aircraft," Cawthra said.

Cawthra said initial information indicated that the neither plane suffered from mechanical failure, though a witness, Dan Sullivan of Salem, who was camping at Champoeg park, said he heard the Beech Bonanza sputter and backfire before recovering.

Pilot notices damage to plane after landing. Charlotte/Douglas International Airport (KCLT), Charlotte, North Carolina.

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina - US Airways mechanics are investigating what might have caused damage to plane that landed at Charlotte Douglas airport Wednesday evening.

A US Airways spokesperson told WBTV news that flight # 3290 operated by Republic Airlines originated in Savannah, Georgia and landed normally in Charlotte at 5:53 p.m.

After landing, US Airways said the pilot inspected the aircraft and noticed damage to the plane's tail section.

US Airways does not know how or when the plane was damaged, and did not elaborate on the extent of the damage.

The spokesperson also said they do not know if the pilot inspected the aircraft before taking off for Charlotte.

There were 49 passengers onboard the aircraft, which was an ERJ 175. No one was hurt.

Beech V35, N5938S and Piper PA44, N3062H

Investigators looking into a collision over an Oregon state park that killed a former state trooper said Wednesday one of the two planes was flown by a flight instructor and pilot under instruction.

ST. PAUL, Ore. —  Investigators looking into a collision over an Oregon state park that killed a former state trooper said Wednesday one of the two planes was flown by a flight instructor and pilot under instruction.

Authorities said they aren't sure whether the flight instructor or pilot under instruction was controlling the aircraft when it collided Tuesday afternoon with a plane flown by 58-year-old Stephen Watson, a retired state trooper.

Watson was killed when his single-engine plane broke apart and slammed into the ground near Wilsonville. Investigators believe Watson was alone in the plane.

Flight instructor Travis Thompson, 31, of Beaverton and 23-year-old pilot under instruction Henrik Murer Kalberg landed in a field and walked away from the aircraft without injuries. Authorities said Kalberg lives in Hillsboro; his Federal Aviation Administration pilot license lists an address in Norway. Neither Thompson nor Kalberg could immediately be reached for comment.

Their twin-engine, 1978 Piper PA-44-180 was registered to Hillsboro Aviation outside Portland. Executives didn't respond to requests for comment.

"We're dealing with a tragic situation at this point and we're thankful no one on the ground was injured," National Transportation Safety Board lead investigator Josh Cawthra.

Watson's aircraft, a single-engine 1966 Beech Bonanza V35, broke apart after the collision, strewing debris over a 1 1/2-square-mile area in and around Champoeg State Park, about 25 miles south of Portland, Cawthra said.

Investigators aren't sure whether the pilots were in communication with each other or with air traffic controllers when the planes collided. The weather was clear and sunny.

Investigators said the tail of Watson's aircraft was found about a mile from the rest of the plane. The nose of the training aircraft was sheared off.

Witnesses told investigators both planes were flying level at the time of the impact, but authorities haven't verified that information, Cawthra said.

Watson retired from the Oregon State Police in 2002 after a 26-year-career in the Astoria and Tillamook offices. He was working as the assistant director of public safety at the University of Portland.

Watson was a "very quiet, calm, competent leader," said state police Lt. Gregg Hastings, who has known Watson since both started their careers in Astoria in the 1970s.

"He was always a top notch Oregon state trooper and sergeant," Hastings said.

At the University of Portland, Watson wasn't just an enforcer but a teacher, said his boss, Harold Burke-Sivers. He wanted misbehaving students to take responsibility for their actions and learn from them.

"He saw us as being teachers in the classroom of real life," Burke-Sivers said.

Watson is survived by his wife and two daughters.

Hélène V. Gagnon presenting at Bombardier Safety Standdown 2011

by Bombardier on Oct 26, 2011

The annual Safety Standdown event in Wichita, Kansas, is firmly established as an aviation industry pillar. Bombardier is keen to spread its safety initiative worldwide through seminars in Europe, Latin America and Asia. Over the years, the program quickly gained a reputation for excellence throughout the aviation community. As of August 2011, more than 5,000 pilots, crew members, safety specialists and industry officials have graduated from Safety Standdown. Additional information on Safety Standdown is available at www.safetystanddown.com.

Pakistan International Airlines: Nine planes grounded because of spare parts shortage

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has had to reduce its flights by 23 percent because nine of its 39 aircraft have been grounded for want of spare parts which are to be supplied by a Dubai-based US firm, Transworld, under a controversial multi-billion-dollar agreement.

Under the deal, Transworld undertook to provide a $700 million credit line to PIA for 90 days. However, the agreement has turned out to be a liability as the airline has had to open a $2.5 million Letter of Credit (LC) (release of advance payment through bank) in favour of Transworld for the supply of spare parts for the grounded aircraft.

Nine planes grounded because of non-availability of spare parts before the start of PIA’s Haj operations are three 747/300 or 743 aircraft, one ATR-42, three A-310, one B-777 and one 737 aircraft.

The grounding of planes has badly affected the flight schedule. However, PIA spokesman Sultan Ahmed said that only two aircraft had been grounded for want of spare parts.

“At present two aircraft are under planned maintenance and will start their operational flights from November 30. Aircraft check is a regulatory requirement and carried out on regular intervals on all aircraft of PIA fleet,” the spokesman said.

He said the grounding of an aircraft meant that it had lost its airworthiness and could not fly anymore, adding that all 39 aircraft in the PIA fleet airworthy. “All the aircraft undergo a scheduled maintenance check under a phased programme in PIA’s engineering department and it was a normal practice in the aviation industry across the world,” he remarked.

The government awarded a controversial multi-billion-dollar contract to Transworld in September for purchase of spare parts, consumable materials, chemicals and other items for PIA planes.

The firm is also to provide $700 million credit facility to PIA for 90 days. It is for the first time in the history of the national flag carrier that its management has been barred from purchasing spare parts from its 700 registered enlisted vendors and sole rights for such purchases now rest with the firm called Transworld Aviation.

Meanwhile, a poster recently prepared by Air League of PIA Employees Union said that PIA had issued an order for transfer of $2.5 million in the bank accounts of Transworld through the LC for purchase of spares instead of supplying spare parts to the airline on 90 days credit.

However, the PIA spokesman said: “Opening of the LC is a prescribed requirement for purchase of spares or other goods from the market or from a contract supplier. Similarly, spares purchased from Messrs Transworld also require opening of an LC while the credit line of $700 million is being used.”

A senior PIA official told Dawn that since the signing of the agreement between PIA and Transworld about 400 orders had been placed with the US firm for supply of spares for the grounded aircraft, but it has so far failed to meet even a single order.

The PIA spokesman said: “No such inventory is pending regarding purchase orders with PIA procurement and logistics department. In fact, placing of orders is a continuous process and the supply chain is being satisfactorily maintained.”

It has also been learnt that international companies ready to provide spares to PIA within 24 hours in case of emergency, are now reluctant to give this facility to Transworld.

http://www.dawn.com

Email said aerial move unsafe - New Zealand.

An unsolicited email received overnight by the family of a pilot killed during a mid air collision over Paraparaumu in 2008 said the aerial move done by the pilot was unsafe.

Wellington Regional coroner Ian Smith is hearing the inquest into the deaths of Bevan Hookway, 17, who was on his fifth hour of solo flight when his plane collided with the helicopter flown by James Taylor, 19. Mr Taylor was with examiner David Fielding, 30, doing a final flight test.

All three men died after the helicopter fell into the Paraparaumu Placemakers store on February 17, 2008 while the plane crashed into Dennis Taylor Drive.

In an email read out at the inquest today, Massey University School of Aviation professional programmes manager Frank Sharp, a former leader of the Kiwi Red Skyhawk aerobatic team, called the aerial manoeuvre done by a Cessna pilot unsafe.

Jan Fielding, mother of David Fielding, read out the unsolicited email and told the coroner it was received last night.

Mr Hookway had been performing an overhead join in preparation for landing at Paraparaumu airport.

Criticism of the manoeuvre has also come from highly experienced rescue pilot John Funnell.

Mr Sharp said the overhead join was unsafe and not used in Australia or the United States.

He said he supported Mr Funnell's view.

Mr Sharp also said in his view the two pilots never saw each other for a variety of reasons including their positions, lighting, focus of their tasks and the limitations of their sight due to aircraft configuration.

He also said a Transport Accident Investigation Commission report including calculations of airspeed were incorrect and the aircraft were going faster than TAIC reported.

The inquest is expected to hear from flight instructors today.

Flying at 230mph the Thomson Airways flight would have been just 30 seconds from disaster. Holiday jet and glider close to a collision over Glasglow, UK

A HOLIDAY jet and a glider came within 1,000ft of colliding over Glasgow, an inquiry has found.

The “scarily close” near miss happened on July 23 when the Boeing 757 descended to 3,000ft on its approach to Glasgow Airport.

Air traffic controllers warned the jet crew their radar had detected an aircraft in the area and told them to be on the lookout for the glider.

The airline pilot, flying holidaymakers into Glasgow from Verona, spotted the glider directly ahead, less than two miles away.

Flying at 230mph, the Thomson Airways flight, thought to be carrying up to 289 passengers, would have been just 30 seconds from disaster.

Its pilot had to bank to the right to avoid the glider, which has a wingspan of 49ft, and missed it by just 1,000ft.

The Airprox Board inquiry officially rated the incident risk B, the second highest category where “safety is not assured” and “the safety of the aircraft was compromised”.

The incident took place 11 miles north-east of Glasgow, in Class E airspace, which means in good weather it can be used by any aircraft, including those not in touch with air traffic controllers, as long as they keep a lookout for other planes.

Since the near miss, the Civil Aviation Authority has temporarily changed the area to Class D, meaning gliders or light aircraft must contact air traffic controllers.

The Discus BT glider pilot was midway through a cross-country flight south from an airfield at Portmoak, Fife, at around 4pm.

The twin-jet airliner’s crew reported to Air Traffic Control that they were turning to avoid a glider at the same level, which they described as being “scarily close”. Yesterday, the CAA said commercial airlines regularly used Class E airspace, due to traffic levels, or to reach regional airports which were not linked by areas of airspace monitored by air traffic controllers.

Aviation writer Jim Ferguson said: “The authorities have recognised the existence of a potential problem by reclassifying the airspace involved by upgrading it from Class E to Class D.”

Keith Auchterlonie, a spokesman for the British Gliding Association, said upgrading the spot where the near-miss took place was “unnecessary” because Glasgow was “already surrounded by large areas of Class D airspace”.

He added: “If that area were to be closed off permanently, it would make it extremely difficult for any light aircraft or gliders to transit north to south in Scotland.”

The Airprox report concluded: “Although the B757 crew had taken positive action to avoid the Discus glider and remove the actual collision risk, the Board agreed that the aircraft passed with separation margins reduced and that safety had been compromised during this encounter.”

But it said the “interim measures” since taken by the Civil Aviation Authority would “prevent the re-occurrence of any similar event”.

A Thomson Airways spokesman confirmed that rules for the airspace in that area had been “improved” as a result of the incident.

http://www.express.co.uk

Republic Airways Holdings Studies $113M Boost on Sale of Planes

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. is considering the sale of planes and airport landing rights in Washington to help raise about $113 million in a second round of restructuring at its unprofitable Frontier Airlines unit.

The plan also includes removing a lavatory to make room for three more seats on some of the carrier’s Airbus SAS jets and indefinitely deferring some aircraft purchases from Embraer SA, Chief Executive Officer Bryan Bedford told employees in a memo obtained by Bloomberg News.

Republic fell $15 million short of its goal to keep an unrestricted cash reserve of at least $200 million in the third quarter, Bedford wrote. The Indianapolis-based airline is projected to post a profit when it reports results next month, based on estimates from seven analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

“Absent asset sales, we will be even further below that target by the end of the year,” Bedford said. “So again, we have to make tough choices, and we will.”

Republic isn’t discussing Bedford’s memo because it was an internal letter to employees and not intended for distribution outside the company, Peter Kowalchuk, a spokesman, said today in an e-mail.

Bedford took on a new business model by operating Frontier under its own brand after Republic bought the Denver-based airline out of bankruptcy in October 2009 for $108.8 million. Republic’s previous focus had been regional flights for carriers such as Delta Air Lines Inc. and American Airlines.
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Restructuring Steps

Republic is “close to completing” an initial $120 million restructuring at Frontier, including concessions from employees and vendors, Bedford told employees.

Steps under study in the new restructuring round include whether to sell flight slots at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport valued at almost $50 million, and 10 Embraer E190 jets, for a total of about $40 million, Bedford wrote.

“We have placed aircraft on the market for sale to test the water on cash values, but we have not made a decision to remove any aircraft as yet,” he said.

Another $20 million in cash would become available under a tentative agreement with Embraer to accept two new E190s next month under a previous order and defer the remaining jets, Bedford wrote. Embraer would return about $3 million in cash deposits to Republic, he wrote.

“Investing limited cash reserves in new aircraft is just impossible right now,” Bedford told employees.

Aircraft Order

The airline ordered six E190s in November 2010 for delivery from August through December of this year, with a “conditional” order for 18 E190 or E195 jets. Embraer declined to comment on Republic’s pending orders, said Flavia Sekles, communications director for the Sao Jose Dos Campos, Brazil- based planemaker.

A quarterly profit for Republic would end a streak of three losses that began in the last three months of 2010. The shares have tumbled 65 percent this year, closing today at $2.55 in New York.

Republic’s 2012 business plan is being completed over the next several weeks and will go to directors for approval on Nov. 2, Bedford wrote.

Taking out one of three lavatories on Frontier Airbus A318s and A319s would let the carrier put three more passengers on each flight, boosting sales and spreading operating costs across more seats on each plane, Bedford wrote.

“We can generate much-needed extra revenue from those additional seats with a very small risk to customer satisfaction,” the CEO said.

The change would make Frontier’s jets comparable to similar-sized planes flown by Southwest Airlines Co., Allegiant Travel Co. and Spirit Airlines Inc., all of which have two bathrooms, according to the memo.

Frontier can add six seats to its larger A320 jets by switching to a “slim-line” model that also would reduce weight and fuel burn, Bedford wrote. Frontier has 41 A319s, four A318s and 14 A320s, according to its website. Republic, operating for Frontier, flies 15 E190s.

The future for four Bombardier Inc. Q400 turboprop aircraft and three E170s is being evaluated, Bedford wrote.

http://www.bloomberg.com

Piper PA-32-300, N600DK: Accident occurred June 25, 2011 in Bridgeport, Connecticut

NTSB Identification: ERA11CA365 
 14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, June 25, 2011 in Bridgeport, CT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/17/2011
Aircraft: PIPER PA-32-300, registration: N600DK
Injuries: 2 Serious.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The purpose of the flight was for the pilot to regain night currency, which had lapsed two weeks prior. The pilot stated that he intended to fly three landing pattern approaches and perform three full stop landings. According to the pilot, the take off, and initial climbout to a left downwind were normal. The pilot reported that there was a slight haze in the vicinity of the airport. While turning to the base leg of the approach, the pilot trimmed the airplane for 90 mph and lowered the flaps to the "first notch." The pilot reported the he saw "two white lights" on the vertical approach slope indicator, which indicated that he was above the glideslope, so he adjusted the trim to maintain 80 mph and lowered the flaps to the "third notch." The airplane's left wing impacted a 12-foot-tall blast fence, which was located 20 feet from the end of the runway, resulting in the separation of the left wing from the fuselage. After the accident, the pilot stated that the blast fence was indistinguishable from the runway threshold markings. The blast fence was properly marked with red and white checker markings on the interior side and was not required to be lit by Federal Aviation Administration facility requirements. The pilot was familiar with the airport.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from a blast fence on final approach to land.


The purpose of the flight was for the pilot to regain night currency which had lapsed two weeks prior. The pilot stated that he intended to fly three landing pattern approaches and perform three full stop landings. According to the pilot, the take off, and initial climb out to a left downwind were normal. The pilot also reported that there was a slight haze in the vicinity of the airport. While turning to the base leg of the approach, the pilot trimmed the aircraft for 90 miles per hour (mph) and lowered the flaps down to the "first notch." The pilot reported the he saw "two white lights" on the Vertical Approach Slope Indicator (VASI) which indicated that he was above glide-slope so he adjusted the trim to maintain 80 mph and lowered the flaps down to the "third notch." The airplane's left wing impacted a 12-foot-tall blast fence, which was located 20 feet from the end of the runway resulting in the separation of the left wing from the fuselage. The VASI was set for a 3 degrees glide-path and the threshold of the runway was displaced 319 feet. After the accident, the pilot stated that the blast fence was indistinguishable from the runway threshold markings. The blast fence was properly marked with red and white checker markings on the interior side and was not required to be lit by federal aviation administration facility requirements. The pilot was familiar with the airport.



Photo: Contributed
Photo: Contributed
Photo: Contributed
BRIDGEPORT -- A Westport woman who suffered severe and possibly permanent injuries to her left leg after the plane she was traveling in crashed at Sikorsky Memorial Airport on June 25 is suing the city for failing to following Federal Aviation Administration and state recommendations to remove a steel blast wall.

The suit filed in Superior Court this week on behalf of Roxanne Sward, the wife of the pilot, Paul Sward, claims at least one and possibly more of the heavy steel girders supporting the blast wall near the approach to Runway 24 collapsed and pierced the plane's cockpit after being struck.

The accident caused the plane, owned by former state Sen. Robert Russo who rented it to Paul Sward, burst into flames. The Swards had to be extricated from the plane and taken to Bridgeport Hospital.

"She suffered very serious permanent injuries to her left leg," said James Kearns, a Trumbull lawyer who once served as a city attorney in Bridgeport and has handled several aircraft crash suits over the years. Kearns said the woman is confined to a wheelchair after bones in her left leg were crushed and pulverized as well as broken in her foot and ankle.

"The city is negligent in not following the recommendations of the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board to remove the steel girder-supported blast wall and replace it a frangible wall designed to give away when struck," Kearns said.

Additionally Kearns said there are no warning lights on the blast wall which would alert aircraft approaching the runway. There are a series of red lights elevated on poles to the east of Runway 24. But Kearns said those lights in poor visibility conditions create the illusion that a pilot "could continue to descend for landing, when in fact the aircraft was several feet from the runway and had not cleared the blast wall."

City Attorney Mark Anastasi could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

The crash reignited the recommended safety zone debate which has been objected to by Stratford town officials and residents. While the airport is owned by Bridgeport in rests on land in Stratford. The construction of the safety zone requires realignment of Stratford's Main Street.

For years, Bridgeport officials have pushed for the safety improvements, while officials in Stratford, where the airport is located, have fought runway expansion, citing a 1978 agreement that mandates "permission from the town for the acquisition of land for extension of airport runways."

Last month the Federal Aviation Administration granted approval for the improvements; local and state approvals are now needed for it to move forward.

At least four aircraft have crashed into the thick metal blast fence during the past 17 years. The Federal Aviation Administration has recommended replacing the fence with a football field long stretch of soft concrete-like material which would give way when a plane strikes it.

Eight people were killed during an April, 1994 crash into the blast fence.
 

NTSB Identification: ERA11CA365
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, June 25, 2011 in Bridgeport, CT
Aircraft: PIPER PA-32-300, registration: N600DK
Injuries: 2 Serious.
Full narrative available


The purpose of the flight was for the pilot to regain night currency which had lapsed two weeks prior. The pilot stated that he intended to fly three landing pattern approaches and perform three full stop landings. According to the pilot, the take off, and initial climb out to a left downwind were normal. The pilot also reported that there was a slight haze in the vicinity of the airport. While turning to the base leg of the approach, the pilot trimmed the aircraft for 90 miles per hour (mph) and lowered the flaps down to the "first notch." The pilot reported the he saw "two white lights" on the Vertical Approach Slope Indicator (VASI) which indicated that he was above glide-slope so he adjusted the trim to maintain 80 mph and lowered the flaps down to the "third notch." The airplane's left wing impacted a 12-foot-tall blast fence, which was located 20 feet from the end of the runway resulting in the separation of the left wing from the fuselage. The VASI was set for a 3 degrees glide-path and the threshold of the runway was displaced 319 feet. After the accident, the pilot stated that the blast fence was indistinguishable from the runway threshold markings. The blast fence was properly marked with red and white checker markings on the interior side and was not required to be lit by federal aviation administration facility requirements. The pilot was familiar with the airport.

Beech V35, N5938S and Piper PA44, N3062H

Stephen Watson

WILSONVILLE, Ore. - A man who was killed when the plane he was piloting crashed following a mid-air collision has been identified as a former Oregon State Police commander.

Steven Watson, 58, was a 26-year veteran with the Oregon State Police. He first started as a trooper in Astoria in 1976 and in 1988, he transferred as a sergeant to the Tillamook office, where he spent the rest of his career.

Watson retired in 2002 and was currently working at the University of Portland as an Assistant Director of Public Safety. Students and faculty were notified of his death.

During a news conference on Wednesday, Lt. Gregg Hastings with the Oregon State Police described Watson as a quiet, calm, confident leader with a smile that lit up the room.

Watson leaves behind a wife and two adult daughters.

The Crash

The mid-air collision that took the OSP veteran's life happened Tuesday afternoon over Champoeg State Park near Newberg.

The debris field spread out over a mile and a half and the tail of the plane that was piloted by Watson was found about 3/4 of a mile away from the rest of his plane's wreckage. One piece of debris did hit a vehicle but there was only minor damage.

All of the main components of the two aircrafts have been recovered.

Two people who were on board the airplane that collided with Watson's survived. Their names have not yet been released.

Investigators from the National Transportation Board and the FAA will be on the scene for a few days looking into what happened.

At this point investigators believe Watson was alone in his plane, despite some reports that there was a second person. Officials are continuing to search the area just in case.

Investigators also believe that both planes were in level flight when they hit each other.

A preliminary report is expected within five days but a full report will likely take months.

Park Closed

Champoeg State Park will be closed until further notice. Over a dozen campers were staying there when the planes went down and they are being relocated.

Cathay Pacific Airways denies claims of shortage in cockpits

Cathay Pacific Airways yesterday dismissed claims of a pilot shortage, saying its ongoing recruitment drive is in line with its expansion plans.

A spokeswoman said 112 pilots are expected to join this year, while 43 have resigned, retired or leaving for other reasons.

This leaves a net growth of 69 pilots - excluding the 44 trainees who have become full-fledged pilots over the last three months.

However, this is still a far cry from the 250 pilots that chairman Christopher Pratt has said he hopes to hire this year.

The airline currently employs about 2,500 pilots.

The spokeswoman said that, when looking into the airline's recruitment progress, the number of cadet pilots under training should also be taken into consideration.

She said there are 143 cadet pilots who will be joining Cathay after completing their training, which takes 10 to 60 weeks, depending on ability and performance.

The recruitment drive comes amid growing complaints from pilots who claim they are being asked to work excessive hours.

According to a captain, pilots are assigned "field reserve" days, in which they have to show up at work ready to replace a colleague who cannot fly due to sickness, tardiness or other reasons.

There are also "home reserve" days when pilots are allowed to do their own thing, but should be prepared to answer a call to work when the "field reserve" pilots have been used up.

The captain told The Standard there have been complaints that "home reserve" pilots are being used excessively.

"It is like being a military pilot, where you can be called to fly on a moment's notice, leaving you with little personal time to relax and not think of work," he said.

"If the scheduling department was more efficient, there should be little to no utilization of home reserve crew members."

He said this inefficiency has led to a more disgruntled flight crew.

Another pilot said that while he hasn't heard of massive resignations recently, Cathay is running short of pilots.

Yet another claimed that many pilots in the United States and Britain are planning to move to Hong Kong to work for Cathay Pacific, as some airlines in the two countries are suffering.

He added that many are reportedly willing to accept lower salaries just to secure jobs.

But none of them have made an application yet, he said.

http://www.thestandard.com.hk

Remains of Canadian professional skydiver found near Moab Rim. ( Utah)

Skydiver Dave Brown is shown in this undated photo, location unknown.



MOAB — A hiker discovered the body of a Moab man who had been missing for more than three months.

The remains of David Roy Brown, 37, of Canada, were discovered 400 feet below a ridge near the Moab Rim on Sunday. Searchers had combed that area extensively in the days following Brown's disappearance on June 29 but didn't find anything.

"It's an extremely rough area. It's hard to climb around in there, to walk around in there, even from the air to see something from there," said Moab Police Chief Mike Navarre. "It's not surprising to me that we didn't find him on those first searches."

Brown's family issued a statement Wednesday confirming that his body was found. They thanked Navarre and his staff, plus the volunteers who searched for Brown.

“We are devastated by our loss of such a gifted young man. We will miss Dave’s smile and sense of adventure," said Brown's sister, Wendi TeKamp.

"We are grateful for the volunteers at Rocky Mountain Rescue Dogs, and Dave's many friends far and wide who helped us look for him. Blue skies, Dave. You are so loved and your incredible zest for life will be missed," she said.

Police are still waiting for an autopsy report from the medical examiner, but they don't suspect foul play was involved.

Brown was a national champion and world record-holding skydiver and an instructor.

MOAB, Utah—  The body of 37-year-old David Roy Brown, a skydiving instructor who disappeared on June 29, was found by a hiker Sunday in the mountains surrounding Moab.

"We are devastated by our loss of such a gifted young man. We will miss Dave's smile and sense of adventure. We would like to thank Chief Mike Navarre, Moab Police and his staff for their search efforts," said Wendi TeKamp, Brown's sister, in a statement issued to FOX 13 News.

Get It Now: FOX 13 News E-mail Newsletters and Text Message Alerts | Mobile Web Site and Smartphone Apps | Twitter and Facebook

Brown left his personal belongings, including a driver's license, Canadian passport, U.S. Green Card clothing and cash at his Moab residence before he disappeared.

Brown was a national champion and world record holding skydiver with his skydiving team, Team Mandrin. His teammates, family members and power paragliders conducted a volunteer search for two weeks after he was reported missing.

"We are grateful for the volunteers at Rocky Mountain Rescue Dogs, and Dave's many friends far and wide who helped us look for him, Blue skies, Dave. You are so loved and your incredible zest for life will be missed," said TeKamp.

Bellevue City Council: Airport causes cancer, safety risks. Opposition strong at council meeting. Friedman Memorial Airport (KSUN), Hailey, Idaho.

http://www.airnav.com/airport/SUN
Friedman Memorial Airport cannot and will not close in the foreseeable future, said airport officials at a joint meeting of the Friedman Memorial Airport Authority and the Bellevue City Council last night.

"Closing the airport is not an option," said airport manager Rick Baird. However, he warned, if the community chose not to make any improvements at the existing site, the valley could lose all commercial air service. Losing commercial service would also mean losing the air traffic control tower funded for commercial use, meaning general aviation pilots would be at a greater safety risk.

"All you have to do is watch the air traffic when Allen and Co. is here, and you understand the value of the tower," Baird said.

But few Bellevue residents were convinced that expanding the airport or shifting Friedman's runway 1500 feet to the south was the best option for all concerned. Chantrelle homeowner Darsi Cordingley quoted an article from the New England Journal of Medicine stating that those who live within six miles of an airport are more likely to develop cancer.

"I have worked with the Blaine County Schools for 20 years," she said. "I have worked with children who are fighting leukemia, and I have watched them die."

Bellevue council member Dave Hattula said the potential for accidents would skyrocket with an airport expansion at the current site.

"We have been very lucky that a major accident has not occurred," he said. "If some major accident occurs, it's going to be someone we know, a family member or otherwise."

Lake of Bays mayor wants out of airport - Gravenhurst, Ontario, Canada.

Lake of Bays mayor want out of airport. Lake of Bays Mayor Bob Young. 
Pamela Steel

HUNTSVILLE-LAKE OF BAYS - Mayor Bob Young has said repeatedly that he would gladly sell Lake of Bays’ interest in the Gravenhurst airport for a dollar.

“I’ll give it to them; to hell with the dollar,” he said in an interview with this newspaper.

Young says that Lake of Bays doesn’t get any real benefit from the $80,000 it pays to the district per year, as its share of the airport’s expenses. He suggests the airport should be sold to a private company that would run it as a business or it could be run by a consortium in Bracebridge or Gravenhurst.

“It delivers the benefits to them; let them make any profits there are to be had,” he said.

The Lake of Bays’ share of airport costs is 10 per cent of the total.

Young said he has difficulties with plans to expand the airport.

“To date they have only identified $100,000 of revenue for an over $2.8-million investment,” he said

He said the district has approved the airport expansion in principal but there has not yet been any commitment of funds.

“For every dollar they spend we (Lake of Bays) pay 10 per cent through our tax allocations. We already pay them $80,000 a year – we need to be vigilant.”

He said the district has done a number of planning studies and it has indicated that the airport delivers $40 million worth of benefits to Muskoka.

“I got the study

Lake of Bays mayor wants out of Muskoka airport and had a look at it – it’s a style of analysis I’ve used in my own planning analysis,” he joked, saying the results were “specious.”

“I think these reports are not sound … These studies are suspicious; there’s a credibility problem when the data supporting the evidence is confidential.”

Young said he has tried to delve into the basis of the reports and been told that the information is confidential.

Huntsville Mayor Claude Doughty also questions the report.

“I share Bob’s concerns about the veracity of the report,” he said. “When you look at the basis on which that report was done there are certainly questions there that cause one to wonder about the veracity of the recommendations.”
Doughty estimates that Huntsville pays about twice as much as Lake of Bays to maintain the airport, but he also sees some benefit for his town.

“There are seasonal people that fly into that airport; that have cottages in the Huntsville area,” he said adding that Huntsville’s recreational flyers also make use of the facility.

The Huntsville mayor said at the most recent district corporate services meeting there was a motion agreed upon in principal to appoint a board of management to the airport. He had wanted the board of management to precede any expansion but the rule of council was that both go ahead simultaneously, according to Doughty.

He also said he would like to have discussions with the current owners of Deerhurst about expanding the airport at the resort.

But Lake of Bays, according to Young, is too far away from the airport to be able to benefit from it.

“I would suggest the majority of pilots in my township are in float planes … If you look at a map of Lake of Bays it’s mostly water.”

The mayor also pointed out that airport property taxes go to Gravenhurst.
Lake of Bays councillor Shane Baker is a member of the planning committee that is responsible for overseeing airport operations and says that discussions about the airport have been contentious at district this year.

“Mayor Young has to be thanked for illustrating what the airport is costing to operate and asking the question ‘Why are we in this business?’” said Baker in an email to this paper. “The problem is that the current discussions are focused on the potential for a major economic expansion at the airport that could include a training facility and 30 new jobs. Not to mention significantly higher fuel sales (our main source of revenue). Therefore, I feel any discussion of selling or giving the airport away is best suited to another time.”

Baker said comments from some councillors and members of the pilot’s lobby regarding district staff and the committee have been disappointing and disturbing.

“From my perspective the personal comments about district staff have been the most disturbing as I am quite impressed with their reports and abilities,” he said.

Baker said the federal government has handed the airport responsibility to the district and it was accepted.

“So from time to time I believe we owe it to the electorate to ask whether we should be in this business, just not right now,” he said.

Asked what the township might do with the $80,000 that currently goes to the airport Young said, “Put it into roads – or heaven forbid lower taxes.”

http://www.cottagecountrynow.ca

LA ROMANA, Dominican Republic: Retired general in plane theft blames the President of "brutal persecution". Beechcraft Super King Air 200 (N871C)

LA ROMANA, Dominican Republic. – Retired Army general Rafael Percival Peña, father of the Army lieutenant arrested in connection with the theft of a twin engine plane from the Airport at Higuero (AILI), defended his son’s integrity and called the case a "brutal persecution" against him. "It’s an abuse because of the position which I have taken against the corrupt Government and this system."

Interviewed by phone on La Romana radio station 107.5 FM, the retired officer revealed that his son John Percival Matos doesn’t work in the terminal around 3:30am Sunday the plane was stolen, property of the Puntacana group. "The one they need to look for is me, because I am in fact an airplane pilot; he (his son) is a helicopter pilot."

Percival Peña said on September 23 he was the victim of an ambush in which two vehicles participated, a case he affirms was denounced to Military Intelligence J-2. “In the letter I blame the president of the Republic and that hasn’t been investigated."

He said the incident occurred two days after having been informed, in the presence the political leader Luis Acosta Moreta (El Gallo), the journalist Jhonny Alberto Salazar and the priest Rogelio Cruz, that they were going “to cut out his and the latter’s tongue.”

The authorities say two Venezuelan pilots paid Percival Matos 350,000 dollars to help them sneak into AILI Airport.

.

Airport videocams record pilots in stolen plane case - Beechcraft Super King Air 200 (N871C)

 SANTO DOMINGO - The authorities identified the two pilots who allegedly stole an airplane from El Higuero International Airport (AILI) Sunday, whose whereabouts are unknown thus far.

The pilots were identified as the Dominican resident in Venezuela Ramon Hernandez Peguero, ID no. 045-0016262-5, native of Guayubín (northwest) and the Venezuelan Pedro Geraldo Gutiérrez, passport #00643492.

Las Americas International Airport security cameras filmed both pilots upon arriving aboard a Copa Airlines flight from Panama. On October 2 the pilots stayed at the Hotel Resident, in the La Esperilla sector.

According to the Police, Army lieutenant John Percival Matos –son of retired general Rafael Percival Peña - was paid 350,000 dollars, product of drug trafficking, to help in the theft of the airplane, valued at 2.5 million dollars, property of the Puntacana Group.

Arrested thus far in the case are 18 other members of the military, but no names or ranks have been disclosed.

Yet another Percival

According to sources cited by newspaper El Caribe, a captain and pilot, whose last name is also Percival, uncle of Percival Matos and brother of Percival Peña, is also being held, in the Armed Forces Ministry, in connection with the case.

http://registry.faa.gov/N871C
.
 
http://www.dominicantoday.com

Chicago: Mayoral aide opposes ‘living wage’ rule for airport concession workers

O’Hare and Midway Airport retailers should not be required to pay their 1,500 employees a “living wage” of $11.18-an-hour, a top mayoral aide said Wednesday, arguing that the free market should determine wages.

“We’ve never interfered. We just don’t think it should be legislated. It’s an open market,” Aviation Commissioner Rosemarie Andolino told aldermen during City Council budget hearings.

“The market is working. . . . We now have a union-represented workforce in Terminal 5 — something we have not had in 18 years. . . . We’re seeing better wages and more benefits for those employees already.”

Is Andolino concerned that concessionaires forced to pay higher wages would jack up the already high prices they charge their captive audience of consumers?

“That is a potential concern. But, more important is that we’ve had great success thus far” without mandates, she said.

Andolino’s free market argument did not sit well with aldermen, 31 of whom have now signed on as co-sponsors of an ordinance championed by United Here Local 1 to coincide with Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s concession makeover at both airports.

“This is an opportunity to give our citizens a living wage in an environment that’s a very lucrative environment for these companies. We want to see it apply to everybody — not just piecemeal,” said Ald. John Arena (45th).

The proposed living wage ordinance would close a legal loophole that has allowed airport concessionaires to avoid paying the “living wage” long applied to city contractors.

To prevent existing employees from losing their jobs during the makeover, the ordinance would require new concessionaires to retain existing employees for 90 days. If layoffs are necessary after that, it could only be done on the basis of seniority. Fired employees would be placed on a preferred hiring list.

To justify the mandate, Ald. Tim Cullerton (38th) told the story of one of his Northwest Side neighbors.

She’s a single mom who was laid off from her hospitality job after 9/11, got her real estate license only to see that bubble burst and is now trying to scrape by on the wages she earns as a server at the O’Hare outpost of Macaroni Grill.

“These workers live in Chicago. They own homes here. They send their children to our schools. They shop in our stores. They pay taxes here in Chicago. We’re gonna raise the vehicle taxes and the water rates. And their wages are not gonna be able to keep up with some of these increases and they’re gonna be taking food off the table,” Cullerton said.

Ald. Pat Dowell (3rd) noted that some airport employees are making less-an-hour than the $10 hamburgers they serve.

“If we’re gonna be giving out contracts and allowing companies to make money off the airport, the people who work at the airport need to be paid a living wage and a decent wage,” Dowell said.

Turning to Andolino, Dowell said, “I feel like there’s a resistance here from you and I don’t know why you would resist something that makes good common sense.”

Although a similar ordinance went nowhere in the City Council earlier this year, United Here and its allies now claim five more votes than the 26 they need to pass the ordinance over Emanuel’s objections.

And what happens if aldermen defy the mayor?

“I follow all the rules and ordinances this council passes,” Andolino said.

http://www.suntimes.com