Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Seaplane between Malta and Gozo stops flying

All flights between Malta and Gozo provided by the seaplane operated by Harbourair have been “suspended without further notice.” 

Employees working with the service have been made redundant and the Canadian and Norwegian crew have been sent back home.

The company that used to operate the service says that it is suspending it as it plans to get a new seaplane in 2013.

Harbourair Seaplanes operated daily scenic flights around Malta and Gozo from the Valletta Waterfront and Sliema The Strand. They used to accommodate 14 passengers and ran a daily schedule service between the islands of Malta and Gozo. The company boasted of being “the largest all seaplane company in the world and safety, comfort and service is a priority.”

It started operating in July 2007 and had planned to extend the service by provide a link to Sicily.


Source:   http://www.maltastar.com

Caribbean Airlines gets OK for Georgetown-Toronto flights

Guyana has granted approval for Caribbean Airlines to fly non-stop from Georgetown to Toronto for the next three years.

Cabinet Secretary, Dr Roger Luncheon told a news conference that the airline will operate a twice weekly non-stop scheduled service for the period September 10, 2012 to September 9, 2015, according to the state-run Government Information Agency (GINA).

On August 24, 2011 the airline commenced a freight service on the Miami-Port of Spain- Georgetown route, with its B767 aircraft which has a maximum payload of 90,000 lbs.

EZjet airlines began servicing the Guyana/New York route in December 2011 from the JFK airport and in July, introduced its non-stop flight to Canada. It is estimated that there is a market of 50,000 people travelling between the latter destination and Guyana.

Fly Jamaica, which was recently granted an Air Operators Certificate (AOC),  hopes to offer scheduled flights to Georgetown, New York and Toronto in the coming months.

Over the years, there has been a growing demand for the transportation of services within and without the Caribbean.

Delta Airlines entered the Guyana market in June 2008 with its 758 aircraft, but in the peak season the airline chipped in with a larger aircraft, the 767 that has the capacity to accommodate 240 passengers.

In April, as a result of improved bilateral relations between Suriname and Guyana, Surinam Airways made a return after a six-year hiatus, flying non-stop from Georgetown to Miami, Florida, USA.

Source:   http://www.demerarawaves.com

Robinson R22 Beta, N281RG: Fatal accident occurred September 10, 2012 in Houston, Texas

NTSB Identification: CEN12FA621
Nonscheduled 14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, September 10, 2012 in Houston, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/06/2013
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER R22 BETA, registration: N281RG
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

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.


The commercial pilot and his passenger were conducting a low-level aerial photography operation in a helicopter
when the engine stopped producing power. Several witnesses observed the helicopter descend vertically to the ground as the body of the helicopter spun to the left around the main rotor blades. A postimpact fire consumed most of the helicopter. A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. Although the weather conditions at the time of the accident were conducive to the formation of carburetor icing at cruise and glide power settings, the investigation could not conclusively determine that carburetor ice caused the loss of engine power. The cause of the power loss could not be determined.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The pilot's failure to maintain control of the helicopter after a loss of engine power. The reason for the loss of engine power could not be determined because examination did not reveal any anomalies that would have precluded operation.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On September 10, 2012, about 1545 central daylight time, N281RG, a Robinson R22 Beta helicopter, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain during a low-altitude maneuvering flight in Houston, Texas. The commercial pilot and the passenger were fatally injured. The helicopter was registered to and operated by Helicopter Services, Incorporated, Spring, Texas. Day visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed at the time of the accident. No flight plan had been filed for the 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 aerial photography flight. The helicopter had departed Baytown Airport (HPY), Baytown, Texas, approximately 1500.

The helicopter originally departed David Wayne Hooks Memorial Airport (DWH), Houston, Texas, about 1200, and flew in the local area before landing at HPY around 1425. Fueling records indicate the helicopter was serviced with 22.9 gallons of 100LL fuel at 1429. Around 1500, the Baytown Airport manager saw the pilot and the passenger depart toward the southwest. Approximately 45 minutes later, the helicopter was observed by several witnesses maneuvering over the steel pipe yard near the accident location.

A witness was driving west on Highway 90 toward the beltway when he first observed the helicopter. He said it was about a mile away and at first he thought it was a remote controlled helicopter. The witness said the helicopter was “way up there” and estimated that it was about 400-500 feet above the ground. The helicopter was spinning slowly (he did not recall what direction it was turning) around the main rotor shaft and was descending vertically about 70-80 miles per hour as if it had "lost power." There was no smoke or parts coming off the helicopter as it descended. The main rotor blades were turning "slower than expected" and were not deflected upward. The witness said that the tail rotor did not appear to be turning. The helicopter then impacted the ground, which resulted in a large dust cloud. The witness stopped his vehicle and ran towards the helicopter. After he negotiated a chain link fence, he and another witness used fire extinguishers to contain the post-impact fire, which he described being more intense on the right side of the helicopter, until the fire department arrived.

Another witness was driving east on Highway 90 toward the beltway when he first observed the helicopter about a mile away. It was 70 to 100 feet-high above the ground and was slowly spinning counter-clockwise around the main rotor shaft and was in a slow vertical descent. The witness said the helicopter seemed to move in “slow-motion.” When it was approximately 40 to 50 feet above the ground, the helicopter’s descent rate increased rapidly before it impacted the ground. The witness thought the pilot was trying to land and he did not observe any smoke coming from the helicopter prior to impact. He noted that the main rotor blades were turning “pretty slow” and it seemed “like he lost power.” The body of the helicopter was level and the main rotor blades were not deflected upward. The witness could not hear the helicopter prior to the impact, which occurred just as he was stepping out of his vehicle. After the impact, he observed a large dust plume as he was running to the steel yard. Seconds later, as he was trying to crawl under a chain link fence, he saw a fireball coming from the helicopter. He and another responder used fire extinguishers to contain the post-impact fire until the fire department arrived.

Two witnesses, who were driving together westbound on Highway 90, stated they first observed the helicopter when it was about 1 to 1.5 miles away. They said the helicopter was spinning counter-clockwise and was approximately 75-feet-high above the ground. One of the witnesses thought the pilot was attempting to avoid the highway and drifted over toward the steel pipe storage yard. Neither witness saw any smoke or debris trailing the helicopter and did not hear the helicopter prior to impact. One of the witnesses said the helicopter descended quickly (about 30 seconds). The nose of the helicopter was pointed down toward the ground and the main rotor blades did not look like they were moving. 

Another witness was working on a construction site located about a 1/4-mile from where he first observed the helicopter. He said the helicopter was hovering over a building near the accident site “real low.” All appeared to be normal. The witness lost sight of the helicopter for about 10 minutes due to work related reasons before he saw the helicopter a second time. This time, the helicopter was hovering around 100 to 150-feet-high above the ground over the steel pipe yard. The nose of the helicopter was pointed toward the north. He could not hear the helicopter from his location. The witness said that the helicopter hovered for approximately 1 to 1.5 minutes before it “leaned sideways” to the east and the “tail came around on him.” The helicopter then began to turn to the right slowly as it began a slow vertical descent in a slight nose-down and to-the-right attitude. The witness said the helicopter spun 4 to 4.5 times in a “wide-motion” as it descended “straight down” at a speed of 10-15 mph, as if the pilot was trying to correct for the situation. He said the main rotor blades were turning and deflected slightly upward, but he could not estimate how fast. He never looked at the tail rotor. The witness said from the time the helicopter entered the right turn to the time it impacted the ground it was about 10-15 seconds. Once on the ground, he could still see the main rotor blades. Approximately 30 seconds later, he saw that the helicopter had caught on fire and called 9-1-1 emergency. He did not respond to the scene.

PILOT INFORMATION

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate for rotorcraft-helicopter. His last Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) first class medical was issued on December 16, 2011. According to the operator, the pilot had accrued a total of 757 flight hours, of which, 619 hours were in the R22B.

The pilot had not attended the Robinson Pilot Safety Course prior to the accident, but was scheduled to attend a future class.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

Weather reported at Ellington Field (EFD), Houston, Texas, approximately 16 miles southwest of the accident site, at 1550, was wind 130 degrees at 8 knots, visibility 10 miles, scattered clouds at 8,000 feet, temperature 93 degrees F, dewpoint 62 degrees F, and an altimeter setting of 30.02 inches of Mercury.

The carburetor icing probability chart from Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin (SAIB): CE-09-35 Carburetor Icing Prevention, June 30, 2009, shows a possibility of icing at cruise/glide power at the temperature and dew point reported at the time of the accident.

WRECKAGE INFORMATION

The helicopter came to rest upright on a heading of 195 degrees on a dirt road located inside a steel pipe storage yard. The entire helicopter was accounted for at the site and sustained extensive post-impact fire damage. The skids were spread and level with the belly of the fuselage. The body of the helicopter was listed to the right.
A postaccident examination was conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Investigator-in-Charge (IIC) on September 12-13, 2013. 

Examination of the helicopter revealed that the cockpit area was consumed by fire. The remains of a camera bag, along with several lenses, and several unidentified electronic devices were found in the area near the collective. These devices were sent to the NTSB Recorders Laboratory in Washington DC, and no data was able to be retrieved due to thermal damage.

The removable controls were not installed at the co-pilot's station on the left side. The pilot’s left anti-torque pedal was positioned forward and the collective was mid travel. Both seat structures were fully collapsed.
Flight control continuity was established for all flight controls to the cockpit.

The main fuel tank was partially consumed by fire and the rear exterior skins were bulged and slightly deformed. A puncture hole was observed in the fuel tank and also through the firewall that sat below the tank. The puncture came from the bottom up. The #2 spark plug that sat directly underneath the puncture hole exhibited damage to the top of its ignition lead. The tank’s fuel cap was secure to the filler neck and the fuel finger-screen was absent of debris.

The auxiliary fuel tank was mostly consumed by fire. The crossover line was disconnected and exhibited thermal damage at both ends of the fuel disconnect. The fuel cap was secure to the filler neck and the fuel finger-screen was absent of debris.

The gascolator was thermally damaged. When the unit was disassembled, the gasket was found dry and brittle consistent with heat exposure. There was a small amount of debris on the fuel-screen.

The fuel system’s vent lines, hoses and tubes were all consumed by fire. No blockages or fuel were found in any of the remaining fuel lines. All of the B-nuts for the fuel supply lines were finger tight.

The fuel control located in the cockpit was observed to be in the “ON” position and the fuel-mixture control was in the full rich position. The carburetor-heat control was unlocked and raised approximately 1-inch. The governor switch was in the “ON” position and the throttle connecting rod on the collective was in the full open position. 

The clutch annunciator light and the low rotor RPM warning light were examined by an NTSB Materials Engineer. Examination of the clutch light revealed that the light bulb filament heat coil stretching, indicative of the light being on at the time of impact. The low rotor RPM warning light had heat damage to the extent the bulb melted on to itself and the filament. The filament was broken but exhibited no hot coil stretching.

The skids remained attached to the fuselage and were spread apart and even with the belly of the fuselage. Both cross tubes were bent up at the ends. The aft cross tube was separated at both ends due to impact. The forward right strut was slightly bowed. The heel of the right skid tube was consumed by fire. The toe of the left skid had separated at the forward strut mount. 

The V-belts sustained extensive thermal damage. Small sections of V-belt remnants were found on the horizontal firewall; in the grooves of the sheaves, and on the ground below the sheaves at the accident site. The upper sheave was partially consumed by fire. The sprag-bearing moved freely when manually rotated opposite the direction of drive and locked onto the driveshaft when rotated in the direction of drive. 

The main rotor gearbox rotated freely by hand. The intermediate flex coupling was bent and twisted. There was rotational scoring on the frame adjacent to the intermediate flex coupling. 

The inboard section of the main rotor blades sustained thermal damage. No damage was noted to the remaining portion of the blades. 

The tail rotor blades were separated at the root and exhibited rotational scoring at the tips. The tail rotor driveshaft damper bearing sustained thermal damage but rotated freely. The tail rotor gearbox rotated freely and smoothly.

The engine remained attached to the airframe during the impact sequence and sustained varying degrees of thermal damage. Impact damage was observed on the exhaust system, air box, carburetor, fan and scroll. The scroll was completely consumed by fire. The outer edge of the cooling fan was dented at the 6 o’clock position. There were no indications of any rotational scoring. The starter ring gear did not contact any other engine accessories or components and the upper sheave did not exhibit any rotational scoring.

The air-box was pushed up into and around the carburetor. The filter was thermally damaged. The carburetor float bowl was separated from the carburetor and the brass floats were crushed. The fuel inlet fitting was disconnected from the carburetor due to impact and the carburetor inlet finger screen was dislodged and absent of debris. The fuel mixture arm on the carburetor was disconnected from its shaft due to impact. However, the control-wire hardware was secure and the wire appeared to be in a full rich position. The carburetor heat slider valve was open .400-inch, which corresponded to a carburetor heat selection of about 13 percent of full heat. 

The spark plugs were removed and each displayed a low service life and a color consistent with normal combustion when compared to the Champion Spark Plug Wear Guide P/N AV-27.

Each cylinder was then examined using a lighted bore-scope and no defects were noted.

Both magnetos sustained extensive thermal damage and were observed on their respective mounts; however, the right magneto’s upper mount was not fully secure to the magneto clamp. The upper right clamping nut was partially backed away from the magneto clamp. The left magneto was them removed from the engine.

The oil sump was intact; however, all oil carrying lines were consumed by fire. The oil suction screen was removed and absent of debris. The oil filter was removed and the element was thermally damaged. An unmeasured amount of oil was observed in the oil sump. The oil cooler exhibited thermal damage and the oil pump rotated freely by hand.

The engine could not be manually rotated by the front sheave. The accessory housing and right magneto were then removed and another attempt was made to rotate the engine by hand. This attempt was successful and compression was obtained on #1, #3, and #4 cylinders. Continuity was also established for the valve train, crankshaft, and accessory gears. The #2 cylinder sustained extensive thermal damage around the valve springs. Each of the springs had diminished tensile strength. The #2 cylinder was removed and examined. The piston and piston pin were unremarkable. The intake and exhaust valves and push rods were undamaged, but the exhaust valve’s rocker arm bushing was loose.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL

An autopsy was conducted on the pilot by the Harris County Medical Examiner's Office, Houston, Texas, on September 11, 2012. According to the autopsy report, the cause of death was "blunt force and thermal injuries."

Toxicological testing was conducted by the FAA Toxicology Accident Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The tests were negative for all items tested.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

According to the Robinson R22B Pilot Operating Handbook, page 3-2, the emergency procedures for a power failure (autorotation) between 8 feet and 500 feet above ground level (agl) are:

1) Takeoff operation should be conducted per the Height-Velocity diagram in Section 5

2) If power failure occurs, lower collective immediately to maintain rotor RPM

3) Adjust collective to keep RPM in green arc or apply full down collective if light weight prevents attaining above 97%

4) Maintain airspeed until the ground is approached, then begin cyclic flare to reduce rate of descent and forward speed.


5) At about 8 feet agl, apply forward cyclic to level ship and raise collective just before touchdown to cushion landing. Touch down with skids level and nose straight ahead.


NTSB Identification: CEN12FA621 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, September 10, 2012 in Houston, TX
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER R22 BETA, registration: N281RG
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. 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.

On September 10, 2012, at 1545 central daylight time, N281RG, a Robinson R22 Beta, was substantially damaged when it impacted a dirt service road in a steel pipe storage yard in Houston, Texas. The commercial pilot and the passenger were fatally injured. The helicopter was registered to and operated by Helicopter Services, Incorporated, Spring, Texas. No flight plan was filed for the aerial photo flight that departed Baytown Airport (HPY), Baytown, Texas, approximately 1345. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight that was conducted under 14 Code of Federal Regulation Part 91.

The helicopter departed David Wayne Hooks Memorial Airport (DWH), Houston, Texas, about 1300, and flew to Baytown where the pilot purchased 22.9 gallons of fuel at 1329. Around 1345, the pilot and the passenger departed and were observed about two hours later by several witnesses maneuvering over the steel pipe yard in south-east Houston.

A witness was driving west on Highway 90 toward the beltway when he first observed the helicopter. He said it was about a mile away and at first he thought it was a remote controlled helicopter. The witness said the helicopter was “way up there” and estimated that is was approximately 400-500 feet above the ground. The helicopter was spinning slowly around the main rotor shaft and was descending straight down vertically about 70-80 miles per hour. There was no smoke or parts coming off the helicopter as it descended. The main rotor blades were turning "slower than expected" and were not deflected upwards. The tail rotor did not appear to be turning. The helicopter then impacted the ground resulting in a large dust cloud. The witness stopped his vehicle and proceeded to run towards to the helicopter. After he negotiated a chain link fence, he and another witness used fire extinguishers to contain the post-impact fire until the fire department arrived.

Another witness was driving east on Highway 90 toward the Beltway when he first observed the helicopter about a mile away. It was 70 to 100 feet-above the ground and was slowly spinning counter clockwise around the main rotor shaft and was in a slow vertical descent. It seemed like it was in “slow-motion.” When the helicopter was approximately 40 to 50 feet above the ground, its descent rate increased rapidly before it impacted the ground. The witness thought the pilot was trying to land and he did not observe any smoke coming from the helicopter. He noted that the main rotor blades were turning “pretty slow” and it seemed “like he lost power.” The body of the helicopter was level and the main rotor blades were not deflected upwards. The witness could not hear the helicopter prior to the impact, which occurred just as he was stepping out of his vehicle. After the impact, he observed a large dust plume as he was running to the steel yard. As he was trying to crawl under a chain link fence he saw a fireball coming from the helicopter. He and another responder used fire extinguishers to contain the post-impact fire until the fire department arrived.

The helicopter came to rest upright on a heading of 195 degrees magnetic on a dirt road located in the steel pipe storage yard. The entire helicopter was accounted for at the site and the fuselage was consumed by post-impact fire. The skids were spread and level with the belly of the fuselage. The body of the helicopter was listed to the right. The helicopter was moved to a secure storage facility for further examination.

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate for rotorcraft-helicopter. His last Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) First Class medical was issued on December 16, 2011. The pilot had applied to attend the Robinson Pilot Safety Course a week before the accident. According to his application, he reported a total of 740 hours, of which 600 hours were in the R22B.

Weather reported at Ellington Field (EFD), Houston, Texas, approximately 16 miles southwest of the accident site, at 1550, was wind 130 degrees at 8 knots, visibility 10 miles, scattered clouds at 8,000 feet, temperature 93 degrees F, dewpoint 62 degrees F, and an altimeter setting of 30.02 inches HG.


MIDWEST CITY, Okla. -- Joyce Ates from Midwest City was not the typical grandmother. 

She loved her grandkids; she also loved to fly. 

The 60-year-old woman died when the helicopter she was in went down near Houston Monday afternoon. 

The pilot, 40-year-old Christopher Yeager, was killed as well.

Witnesses said the chopper was spinning out of control before it crashed into a pipe yard and burst into flames.  

Ates' family said that she was an aerial photographer on a shoot. 

She loved to be in the air and had been shooting aerial photos for around 15 years. 

At one point, Ates even flew her own glider. 

Her nephew, Terrell Monks, said she was an amazing woman.

"She was a wonderful person. She had a great mind. She was very smart. Her children were her whole world to her, until grandchildren came along," he said.

Monks said his aunt was able to do everything and continually amazed him. 

"She traveled all over the country, had been to most all the states taking pictures," Monks said. "To see the 60-year-old Pentecostal lady in a jean skirt hanging out the side of the helicopter taking pictures. All of those wonderful parts of her made a particularly wonderful person."

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash. 

It could be months before they know what went wrong.

Monroe Regional Airport (KMLU), Louisiana: Phillips stood out from other airport manager finalists

New Monroe Regional Airport manager Ron Phillips’ management and strategic planning skills elevated him from four other finalists for the job who had more aviation experience, those who selected him said.

As first reported at thenewsstar.com Wednesday, Monroe Mayor Jamie Mayo will officially named Phillips, who has been the interim director for 10 months, during an 11 a.m. Thursday news conference at City Hall.

“I’ve been in business 35 years and I’ve never seen someone who was more prepared in an interview,” said Ouachita Parish auto dealer Steve Taylor, who was among those on a selection committee who interviewed the finalists. “I’m thoroughly convinced Ron is the right man for this job.”

Progressive Bank President George Cummings, who was also a member of the advisory committee that recommended Phillips, was similarly impressed.

“He made a thoughtful, solid presentation and has also already clearly addressed issues at the airport,” Cummings said.

Other selection committee members included Mayo, Public Works Director Tom Janway and businessman Robert Clark.

The city paid Tupelo, Miss.-based PACE Group $27,000 to conduct the search. That firm interviewed 10 candidates and presented a list of five finalists.

Other finalists included:
 

Joe Wheeler, manager of the Greater LaFourche Port Commission airport;

Lane Rodgers, former manager of the Greenville, Miss., airport;

Terry Anderson, former manager of the Tupelo, Miss., airport;

and Kyle Greenwood of Troy, Ala., who has extensive experience in military aviation operations.

Read more:    http://www.thenewsstar.com

He flew his beloved Beechcraft Bonanza for years - Alexander Shukis, 92, of Peachtree City

Alexander Shukis of Peachtree City passed away September 6, 2012 after 92 years of a wonderful life.
 

He was married to the late Betty Shukis and is survived by his children Peter Shukis of Houston Texas, Sally Shukis of Long Branch N.J., Julie Adams of Peachtree City, and beloved son Patrick Shukis.

Al was known for his generosity, thoughtfulness, and desire to make others happy. He was an Army Air Corps veteran who flew the B-17 and B-29 during the war.  He also flew his beloved Beechcraft Bonanza for years and was best known as the dawn patrol for his early morning flights. The last 15 years of his life playing golf with all his buddies here in Peachtree City were filled with wonderful memories and was a truly cherished time for him.

Throughout his late life Al was best known as gramps to many, with seven grandchildren and another seven great-grandchildren. He was loved by all and will be truly missed.

Source:   http://www.thecitizen.com

Cleared for takeoff: New Mexico State University flight program broadens travel options

 
Richard Clayton, pilot and director of University Flight Operations at New Mexico State University, sits in the cockpit of a six-passenger King Air E90 airplane at the Las Cruces International Airport. Clayton said the aircraft is used by university officials throughout the school year and September is a busy month for flights. (Shari V. Hill/Sun-News)


LAS CRUCES — The one-man department behind the wings of NMSU's Flight Operations program described the flight service as an "excellent efficiency tool" that saves time and money on university-related business trips. 

Richard Clayton, 59, NMSU's flight operations director and pilot of the university's King Air E-90, has more than 20,000 hours in the air, flying planes for 33 years.

Currently, Clayton can be found in the cockpit of the twin turbine aircraft, taking NMSU officials to conduct business across the state.

"The service is absolutely a time-saver, especially if you have to travel to Santa Fe or Carlsbad with a group of administrators for a one- to two-hour meeting," said Ricardo Jacquez, NMSU dean of the College of Engineering. "With driving time, you've committed an entire day. If you fly for an afternoon meeting, you can be back by 5 p.m., but still have your morning to take care of business at the office."


Read more:   http://www.lcsun-news.com

Disaster Drill This Saturday: Greater Rochester International Airport (KROC), New York

They come and go dozens of times a day, almost always without incident.

That doesn't mean the folks at Greater Rochester International assume takeoffs and landings will always go as planned.

"We are preparing for the worst,” said Mike Giardino, Airport Director.

This weekend, an airport runway will prove that.

"Casualties, the disaster, fire potentially. Wreckage."

Read more:    http://rochester.ynn.com

Streamline Air to Suspend Service at Trenton Mercer Airport (KTTN), Trenton, New Jersey

Streamline Air has announced that effective Friday, Sept. 14, it will suspend passenger flight operations between Trenton Mercer Airport and Bedford Hanscom Field. 

An automated recording at Streamline Air, a subsidiary of Charter Air Transport Inc., offers passengers the following message:

“As of Sept. 14, streamline air will be suspending service between Trenton Mercer and Bedford Hanscom Field. Any passengers with reservations past the 14th will be refunded to their original method of payment.”

Read more:  http://lawrenceville.patch.com

State OKs $5 million road, fencing project at Wittman Regional Airport (KOSH), Oshkosh, Wisconsin

The state approved a $5 million project to construct a perimeter road and install security fencing at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh.

The perimeter road will limit public access to the airport property while providing internal access for airport maintenance vehicles, said Terry Ripp, airport engineering specialist with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, in a news release. The security fence will restrict unauthorized personnel and wildlife from interfering with aircraft operations. Currently, the northern part of the airport is fenced off, but the southern part has open access.

Read more:    http://www.thenorthwestern.com

Singapore Air inks $400 mln in-flight entertainment deal

(Reuters) - Singapore Airlines Ltd has signed an agreement worth nearly $400 million to equip its aircraft with advanced in-flight entertainment and communication systems in a bid to gain an edge over other carriers.
 

Under the agreement, Panasonic Avionics will equip over 40 SIA planes on order with a system that can provide broadband internet and global live television in the Airbus A350s and the Boeing 777-300ER aircraft, the Singapore flag carrier said on Wednesday.

Panasonic Avionics, which is based in the United States, is part of Japan's Panasonic.

Source:   http://www.reuters.com

Airport Workers Stole 100K Liquor Bottles: District Attorney - John F Kennedy International (KJFK), New York

 


Massive mini-bottle liquor theft ring at JFK

 DC Breaking Local News Weather Sports FOX 5 WTTG  

Authorities say workers at John F. Kennedy International Airport stole 100,000 mini liquor bottles as well as as duty-free items such as larger bottles of liquor, perfume and cigarettes. Eighteen employees were arrested Wednesday on charges including larceny and possession of stolen property. The arrests came after a five-month investigation dubbed "Operation Last Call.'' Fifteen of the defendants are current or former truck drivers for Sky Chef, the food and beverage subsidiary of American Airlines.  The other three are security guards. Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said they stole more than $750,000 worth of liquor and other items. He said a search warrant at the home of one retired truck driver turned up more than 500 garbage bags filled with mini liquor bottles. 

Read more: http://blogs.wsj.com


View more videos at: http://nbcnewyork.com.

Crop Duster Pit Stop: Olivia Regional Airport (KOVL), Minnesota

 

September 4, 2012 by RiverHeightsMedia

 "I was at the Olivia regional airport and shot this short video of some crop sprayers. Special thanks to Chuck, Richard and Turner for showing me some behind the scenes footage of what it takes to keep the aerial spraying business flying. The pit stops only took 5-10 minutes to re-load the material to treat the sweet corn. Stay safe guys."

Westlock, Alberta, Canada - Pilot survives crash into power pole

Doug Neuman/WN 
A crop-duster hit some power lines near Jarvie last Wednesday afternoon, knocking out power to most of Westlock County for about an hour. The pilot was taken to hospital in Westlock and was later airlifted to Edmonton. 


Much of Westlock and Westlock County was left without power for about an hour last Wednesday afternoon after a crop-duster crashed, taking a power pole with it.

Emergency crews, including RCMP, Westlock EMS, the Westlock Fire Department and the Jarvie Fire Department, responded to the scene of the crash near Jarvie at about 1:30 p.m.

Westlock RCMP Staff Sgt. Bryan Clayton said police are investigating the incident in consultation with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, which oversees enforcement of the Aeronautics Act.

The plane, described as a small crop-duster, was taking off from a farmer’s field when it hit some power lines, says police.

The 44-year-old pilot, a man from the Westlock area, then appeared to lose control of the plane and crash into a field near Township Road 632 and Range Road 12.

The pilot sustained injuries in the crash and was transported to hospital in Westlock.

He was later transferred by STARS Air Ambulance to the University of Alberta Hospital in Edmonton.

Cam Heke, a spokesperson for STARS, said crews accepted a call for an inter-hospital transfer in Westlock just after 6 p.m., and confirmed the patient had been involved in a plane crash.

“He was in critical condition en route to the University of Alberta Hospital with life-threatening injuries,” he said.

Clayton said this type of incident is rare in the Westlock area — this is the first plane crash he recalls Westlock members having responded to in his time here.

“I’d say it’s very rare,” he said.

Westlock RCMP continue to investigate the crash, and it is not yet known if any charges will be laid.

“The whole matter is still under investigation. We’re investigating with the TSB; it will be their decision,” he said.

“I don’t know if charges would even apply, or if there are other measures that would be in place.”


Source:   http://www.westlocknews.com

Cessna 402B, Italian registration I-EJRA: Accident occurred September 07, 2012 in Rome, Italy

A Cessna plane from Brescia Montichiari impacted the terrain in a car wrecking facility near the airport of Roma Ciampino. The pilot Alfred Segariol and passenger Antonio Savoldi were killed in the crash - September 7th, 2012 by Fabrizio Lasorsa

See photo gallery:   http://www.demotix.com


http://www.airport-data.com/aircraft/photo
 

NTSB Identification: ERA12WA556 
14 CFR Unknown
Accident occurred Friday, September 07, 2012 in Rome, Italy
Aircraft: CESSNA 402, registration: I-EJRA
Injuries: 2 Fatal.


On September 7, 2012, about 1100 Universal Time Coordinate (UTC), a Cessna 402B, Italian registration I-EJRA, operated by Rilievi Aerofotogrammetrici, impacted the ground near Rome, Italy. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and flight plan information was unknown for the local aerial photography flight that departed from Montichiari Airport – Rome Urbe (LIBR), Rome, Italy. The airplane was destroyed due to impact and postcrash fire. The pilot and passenger were fatally injured. The flight originated about 0715 UTC.

According to Italian authorities, the airplane impacted the terrain in a car wrecking facility and a postcrash fire ensued. This accident investigation is under the jurisdiction of the Agenzia Nazionale per la Sicurezza del Volo (ANSV) of Italy. Any further information pertaining to this accident may be obtained from:

Agenzia Nazionale per la Sicurezza del Volo
Via A. Benigni, 53-00156
Telephone: +39 06 82 078 229
Fax: +39 06 8273672

This report is for informational purposes only, and contains only information released by or obtained from the Government of Italy.


Mammoth, sunken Nazi WWII plane discovered in Sardinia: Only known example of 'Gigant'

Cagliari, September 12 – The wreckage of the only known example of a mammoth, Nazi-era, German airplane was found by a diver in waters near the Italian island of Sardinia. The Me-323 "Gigant" was the largest land-based transport aircraft used in World War II. The German airforce produced about 200 models of the plane, which had a 55-metre wingspan and six engines. 

Read more here: http://www.gazzettadelsud.it

Air India exploring adding more planes

-- Air India sets up committee to look into adding more planes
-- Air India will add more planes only if convinced about profitability
-- Defers decision on taking delivery of three Boeing 777-300 jets
-- Air India replacing more business-class seats with economy class

NEW DELHI--Air India Ltd. is exploring the possibility of adding more planes, Chairman Rohit Nandan said Wednesday, even as the loss-making national carrier takes steps to cut costs and post a turnaround.

Mr. Nandan said Air India has set up a committee headed by him and that includes all its directors to consider the global aviation scenario and the future aircraft requirement for the company.

"The committee will look into the markets and whether we should move at the same pace or whether we should be conservative," Mr. Nandan said. "It's a very dynamic market. So, you will have to look at it every month and you will have to place any order at least one year in advance."

The committee will decide on any fresh aircraft orders only after it is convinced that the move would be profitable for the airline, he added.

The airline has deferred a decision on taking the delivery of three Boeing Co. BA -0.36% 777-300 Extended Range planes and is also reconfiguring some of its Airbus A320 planes by adding economy-class seats in line with lower demand for business-class seats, Mr. Nandan told Dow Jones Newswires. He didn't say why the airline has deferred the decision.

Air India is seeking to add new planes such as Boeing's fuel-efficient Dreamliner and taking measures like cutting staff through a voluntary retirement scheme as part of efforts to reduce expenditure and turnaround the company. It has posted losses for five straight years since 2007, when the government merged Air India and the erstwhile Indian Airlines to create the current entity.

The first of 27 Dreamliner jets Air India has ordered was unveiled to the Indian press Wednesday. Five more are scheduled to reach by the end of December and the rest in four years through 2016.

For Air India, one of the first customers for the airliner and the fifth airline globally to own a Dreamliner, the new planes are crucial as they will allow it to start flights to new foreign destinations and try and regain market share ceded to rivals such as Emirates Airline, Deutsche Lufthansa AG (DLAKY) and Singapore Airlines Ltd. (SINGY).

Although the Dreamliner will start flying to domestic destinations such as Kolkata and Chennai on Sept. 19, its overseas services on routes like Sydney, Melbourne, Paris and Japan will happen only in about two-three months, Mr. Nandan said.

The new jet is considered to be among the most fuel-efficient aircraft, with Boeing saying it uses 20% less fuel than similarly sized planes. The aircraft can carry up to 256 passengers and fly without stopping for up to 15,200 kilometers.

Air India plans to replace its older, fuel-guzzling aircraft with the Dreamliners. However, its plan to lease out five of its eight 777-200 long-range planes hasn't met with success due to their seating capacity.

"The number of seats in the 777-200 is about 246 but the cost of operations is the same as a 330-seat aircraft," Mr. Nandan said. "So, per-seat cost becomes very expensive. That's why we are trying to lease them out."

He said Air India can decide by 2015-2016 on taking the delivery of the three 777-300 extended-range planes.

Read more here: http://www.marketwatch.com

Thunder Over the Blue Ridge Open House and Air Show: Parking to be restricted for 167th Airlift Wing air show

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — The West Virginia Air National Guard’s 167th Airlift Wing is hosting the Thunder Over the Blue Ridge Open House and Air Show on Saturday and Sunday.

All motorists approaching the 167th Airlift Wing are encouraged to use the alternate travel route of Interstate 81 to bypass the base during the event days, according to a news release.

U.S. 11 from Novak Drive to Paynes Ford Road will remain open for this year’s event.

Parking will be prohibited on the following streets from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday:

U.S. 11 from Novak Drive to Paynes Ford Road

Business Park Drive from Novak Drive to I-81 bridge


Stewart Avenue from Wren Street to Winchester Avenue


Kelly Island Road from Paynes Ford Road to base entrance


Paynes Ford Road from U.S. 11 to Airport Road


n Airport Road from Paynes Ford Road to Novak Drive


Novak Drive from U.S. 11 to Airport Road


No parking will be allowed in the Orgill business lot on Business Park Drive, the Polo Ralph Lauren lot on Novak Drive and the park-and-ride lot near the I-81 bridge.

Parking on the base is limited to VIP, vendors, volunteers and performers.

No RV parking will be available.

Handicapped parking is available at the Sino parking lot on Novak Drive. There will be a bus shuttle service that will drop off spectators near the flight line on the base.

http://articles.herald-mail.com

First Solo Flight: Cessna 152 on September 9, 2012 at Bangor International Airport (KBGR), Maine

Embry-Riddle Reduces Airplane Noise with New Mufflers

Response to neighbors' complaints makes Embry-Riddle first large flight organization in nation to install noise reducing system in its fleet of Cessna 172 training aircraft. 

Daytona Beach, Fla. (PRWEB) September 11, 2012

After an investment of $250,000 and five years of research, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University has found a way to address local residents’ concerns about noise from its training aircraft. The university has installed new noise reduction exhaust systems and is continuing to conduct research on new quieter propellers in its Daytona Beach campus fleet of Cessna 172 training aircraft.

“We’ve listened to our community and spent many hours trying to come up with solutions – serving on local noise committees, developing alternate procedures, producing noise abatement handouts and training videos – whatever it took to try to resolve this,” said Ken Byrnes, chairman of flight operations at Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach campus. “But it always came back to a mechanical solution.”

After testing and analyzing a variety of airplane exhaust systems and experimental propellers for the past two years, Byrnes said his department got the best results with an exhaust system from Gomolzig Company in Germany and a resized propeller. The study and installation effort has involved more than a dozen faculty, staff and students at the campus.

“We are the first large flight training organization in the nation to install a noise-reducing system in our fleet of Cessna 172 training aircraft,” Byrnes said. The campus uses 41 of the planes to train students.

Read more:    http://www.prweb.com

Batesville, Indiana: Hill-Rom, Hillenbrand Closing Private Airport

(Batesville, Ind.) - A local airport is being shut down, grounding three private jets and more than a dozen jobs.

Hill-Rom Holdings and Hillenbrand, Inc. operate a private air strip in Batesville, located northwest of town off Enochsburg Road.

The decision was made by company executives Monday to close the airport, Hill-Rom Senior Vice Presidents of Corporate Support Services John Dickey told the Batesville Herald-Tribune.

The closure means that 18 people who work on three private company jets at the airport are being laid off. The newspaper reported that some of those employees, who were notified of the decision Monday, may be hired for other positions with Hill-Rom or Hillenbrand.

Company executives say regulations prevent them from using a private aviation program for customer visits, and it is no longer cost-effective.

“Hill-Rom has decided we will not be using charter services or any special private aircraft services ... only commercial aviation” for future travel needs, Dickey told the Herald-Tribune.

The companies plan to sell the jets. Once that is accomplished, it will look to unload the airport property.

Read more:  http://batesvilleheraldtribune.com/local/x2056640220/Companies-close-local-airport

Bird club: 'Kalapati,' not avian sanctuary, are real threat to Ninoy Aquino International Airport planes

Beware the pigeons.

Wild birds, including those that migrate long distances to roost in Metro Manila's only avian sanctuary, do not pose a danger to airplanes, said the Wild Bird Club of the Philippines at a press conference on Wednesday.

Instead, aviation authorities should be more worried about domesticated pigeons, or kalapati, raised as pets by many urban residents and frequently permitted to fly free.

Philippine Airlines president Ramon Ang recently denounced the presence of a bird sanctuary in coastal ParaƱaque, or a "Critical Habitat," a few kilometers from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. “That endangers the life of all passengers that go to Naia,” Ang said.

The national bird-watching club said that it holds the safety of airplane passengers "paramount," but added, "[T]here is not a shred of evidence that the Critical Habitat is in any way connected with any bird strikes in Metro Manila."

Read more here:   http://www.gmanetwork.com

Pilatus PC-12 into Weather (FL260)

 
 by Dustin Barrett 
"Coming back from KRME we had to shoot the hole between cells - Lightning @ 5:13 or so, icing, choppy, etc"

Reno Air Races: Tour of Unlimited Class Pit on September 8, 2012








United States Coast Guard: Fisherman Rescued After Night Adrift in Fish Bin

 

Published on September 11, 2012 by Associated Press

The Coast Guard rescued 19-year-old fisherman Ryan Harris, after he spent a night adrift off Alaska in a 4x4 fish bin. He got into the plastic bin when his boat sank. A second fisherman was also rescued.

Wyoming Fire Burns 24 Square Miles

 

Published on September 12, 2012 by Associated Press 

Wyoming's Casper Mountain fire has destroyed seven homes and burned 24 square miles. The Horsethief fire near Jackson Hole has burned four square miles.

Editorial: Reno Air Races are safer if everyone's more careful

Hey, let’s be careful out there.

Thirty years ago, that was a signature line from TV’s “Hill Street Blues,” a popular police drama set in an unnamed city that might have been Chicago. But it could just as well be the theme of this year’s Travelnevada.com Reno Air Races, which gets under way at Reno Stead Airport this afternoon.

Last year’s tragedy that saw the deaths of 10 spectators and pilot Jimmy Leeward in a fiery crash forced everyone involved in the annual event to take a good, hard look at everything that goes on during the five days of the races, from inspections of aircraft that sometimes reach 500 mph to the layout of the course to the location of a fuel truck on standby.


The races remain inherently risky, especially for the pilots. There are simply too many unknowns involved in racing high-powered machines for the event to be perfectly safe. But thanks to the recommendations of the National Transportation Safety Board and consultants hired by the Reno Air Racing Association, this year’s event should be the safest ever, for pilots and spectators alike.

Read more here:  http://www.rgj.com