Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Air India risking flight safety by altering operating norms for A320: Pilots

Mumbai: Indian Commercial Pilots Association (ICPA) today accused Air India of arbitrarily changing the flight operating procedures for narrow-body A320 aircraft, affecting flight safety.

Air India has denied the allegations saying that the changed norms fully comply with all operating standards and do not in any way compromise air safety.

“Without any detailed study and without ensuring adequacy of power, any alteration of the certification process is a gross violation of original certification of airworthiness and serious flight safety violation,” said ICPA, the apex body of erstwhile Indian Airlines pilots.

“We would like to inform that even the manufacturer (Airbus) specifies that if the company decides to set all engines acceleration altitude to 800 ft and select a higher one-engine inoperative acceleration altitude, a detailed study needs to be performed by company’s flight operations engineer,” the ICPA said.

The body alleged that Air India neither conducted any such study nor has it consulted any other department like flight safety and training prior to modifying the standard operating system.

“Air India has also not notified the Director General of Civil Aviation on the modified procedure and has not received any approval for the same,” the ICPA said.

Meanwhile, rebutting the ICPA allegations, Air India said that safety of the aircraft, passengers and operations is paramount for the carrier.

“Air India would like to reiterate with emphasis that safety of aircraft, passenger and operations is paramount at Air India. And the changes in flight operation procedures, notified by the airline recently, fully comply with all operating standards and do not in any way compromise air safety,” the statement issued by Air India said.

Source:  http://www.firstpost.com

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