Saturday, June 22, 2013

Chester County G. O. Carlson Airport (KMQS), Coatesville, Pennsylvania: Federal Aviation Administration reviewing trees for air navigation hazard


By GINGER RAE DUNBAR, Daily Local News
Posted: Saturday, 06/22/13 06:22 pm
Updated: Saturday, 06/22/13 07:26 pm        

VALLEY — Private property owners are balking at the removal of seven trees deemed a hazard to air navigation at G.O. Carlson Airport.

Airport Manager Gary Hudson said the Federal Aviation Administration, which governs airport regulations, said the fate of the trees is under review.

Township supervisors have asked airport authorities for funding to remove trees, saying they do not want homeowners to be responsible for the cost.

The trees have grown high enough to be a concern for airplanes taking off and landing, officials say.

Hudson said five of the trees are located on residential property. The other two are on another parcel, he said.

“I think they (airport authority) should be responsible for it,” said township supervisors’ Chairwoman Patrice Proctor.

Hudson said the topic of funding will be discussed with the Chester County Airport Authority, which operates the airport. The FAA study and decision on tree removal is due within months.


Joseph A. Hardy Connellsville (KVVS), Connellsville, Pennsylvania: Authority explores how to market Airport

By Cindy Ekas

Published: Saturday, June 22, 2013, 1:06 a.m.

The Fayette County Airport Authority is exploring the possibility of securing grant funding to market the Joseph A. Hardy Connellsville Airport in Dunbar Township.

Authority member Matt Thomas asked board members this week if they wanted to try to market the airport in an effort to generate more business for the facility.

“This is something that we can do that won't cost the airport any money,” Thomas said. “We need to start looking for grants that we can apply for to help us market the airport. I think we need to apply for grants that don't require matching funds.”

If the airport authority could develop a successful marketing plan, Thomas said he believes the authority could actually start to raise additional money that could help to turn the airport's current financial situation around.

Authority member Fred Davis said he believes it would be a great idea if a video could be produced to promote the airport.

“The video would show the public what the airport has to offer,” Davis said.

Thomas said he wants the authority to work with Laurel Highlands Tourism and Fay-Penn Economic Development Council to market the facility.

Authority members said they also plan to contact the Fayette Chamber of Commerce to find out if the tourism channel is interested in producing a video that would highlight the facility.

“Maybe if we are successful at marketing the airport, we will have more money to operate the facility,” Thomas said. “It's not going to hurt. It can only help us.”

The airport has been struggling with serious financial problems since last year when the facility terminated its contract with former manager Mary Lou Fast.

Several months ago, the authority hired John “Buddy” Neckerauer as the new airport manager. Cathy Malago, who has extensive office and financial experience, was hired as the temporary office assistant.

Neckerauer and Malago have been working together with the authority to turn the airport's finances around.

“The airport has paid its outstanding bills, and we're moving in the right direction,” Davis said. “If we could get into a position where we could generate more money at the airport, our financial situation would continue to improve. Marketing the airport is a great way to put that plan into motion.”


Friday, June 21, 2013

Jamestown Regional Airport (KJMS), North Dakota: Hangar contract approved

Published June 20, 2013, 02:46 PM 
JAMESTOWN, N.D. -- The Jamestown Regional Airport Authority approved a contract Wednesday with Interstate Engineering to design a new hangar building.

At its regular meeting Wednesday the board reviewed revised plans for the proposed hangar, which would house anywhere from eight to 12 bays for commercial and general aviation airplanes. The board has worked with a proposed 12-bay hangar design based on a hangar built in Mandan, N.D., that had an estimated cost of $770,000, including a fire suppression system.

At a special meeting last week the board formed a committee with Keith Veil, Board Chairman Jim Boyd and Airport Manager Matt Leitner to come up with ways to reduce the cost of the building.

Aldinger said Wednesday the committee did reduce the size of the entrance ways into the airplane bays, from 50 feet wide to 42 feet wide, which reduced the costs to $650,000.

The board committed to paying Interstate Engineering $30,000 for the design of the hangar building, but left open how big the building will be and how many airplane bays it will house. The board didn’t take action on a similar contract to design the taxi lanes for the new hangar once it’s built.

Leitner said while the board didn’t fully commit to building a new hangar, this is a positive step forward.

"There hasn’t been a new hangar built at the Jamestown airport in decades," he said.

If the board formally approves a design and moves forward with building a new hangar building, construction would start sometime in spring 2014.

Since the hangar would be constructed for leasing space for private use, the JRAA doesn’t qualify for federally funded grants to fund the building’s construction. Jamestown Mayor Katie Andersen, the city’s representative on the board, said she did some research and found the airport’s best funding option would be a loan through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Loan program.

She presented the board with figures assuming a 40-year loan with an interest rate of 3.5 percent. If the project cost is $600,000, the authority would have to come up with a $28,000 annual payment. For $700,000 the annual payment would be $32,779, and for $775,0000 the annual payment is $36,291.

Andersen said she also came up with a way for the airport to cover an annual payment based on the number of airplane bays included in the building and how much rent is charged per month.

Assuming the airport had 12 bays rented for $200 a month each, that would generate $28,800 a year, which would cover the payment for a $600,000 loan. If there were 14 bays rented at $200 a month, that would generate enough annually to cover a $700,000 loan. If the airport charged $250 per bay for 12 bays per month, those rents would cover the annual payment for a $775,000 loan.

Andersen said she didn’t include inflation or other potential costs in her calculations, but said she believes the board can find a way to pay for the new building through the USDA program.

Leitner said that, based on the number of people who attended an information meeting about a proposed new hangar building in February, he believed there would be no problem finding individuals or companies to rent the new hangar space.


Police unable to lift chopper from crash site: Robinson R44, RP-2045, Accident occurred June 19, 2013 in Tinglayan, Kalinga -- Philippines

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet  – Salvage operations of the damaged police Robinson R44 helicopter that crashed on Wednesday atop a mountain in remote Tinglayan town in Kalinga have  failed.

Investigators from the air units of the Special Action Force and Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines arrived in Kalinga Friday morning to probe and bring the “air asset” to safety and to repair the same failed to airlift the chopper.

Kalinga police director Sr. Supt. Froilan Perez said the Huey (UH1H) helicopter of the Philippine Air Force was unable to lift the damaged chopper.

Carabaos and men were also unable to  bring down the chopper from a very high elevation in barangay Bitalayongan.

Senior Superintendent Oliver Enmodias, chief of the operations branch of the Cordillera regional police command,  said the helicopter’s pilot – Chief Inspector Dexter Vitug and   passenger Police Officer 3 Jude Duque escaped harm and were discharged from the Kalinga provincial hospital Wednesday afternoon, several hours after the chopper they were riding met turbulent winds and crash landed.

The police officers, who were rushed by Philippine Air Force choppers to the hospital, were part of a government contingent which raided at least four marijuana plantations in the hinterland village netting at least P82-million worth of the illegal substance.  The police officers suffered minor injuries from the crash.

Perez added that they are studying how the helicopter  will be chopped into pieces for easier transport downhill.

Insurance investigators from Singapore are also set to arrive in Kalinga this afternoon to probe  the  chopper's crash.

- Artemio A. Dumlao

Father Leo Walsh of St. Benedict Parish: Blessing of the floatplanes - Campbell Lake, Anchorage, Alaska

Father Leo Walsh of St. Benedict Parish, a floatplane pilot himself, sprinkled holy water and read blessings while performing a blessing of the floatplanes at Campbell Lake on Wednesday evening, June 19, 2013. 

See photo gallery here:

Jean Haley Harper: Pioneer pilot retires from cockpit

Jean Haley Harper sits in the cabin of a 757 United Airline jetliner on her last flight from Los Angeles to Denver on June 10. 
Courtesy photo

Tracy, California -- As a girl growing up in Tracy, Jean Haley Harper always wanted to fly. Hanging out at Tracy Municipal Airport with her father intensified that desire.

Through determination and a willingness to undergo aviation training, she realized her dream as one of the first women to pilot a United Airlines plane.

And now Jean has retired as a United captain, ending a 35-year career with the airline.

Her last flight was June 10 between Los Angeles and her home base of Denver.

Among the passengers in the plane were her husband, Victor Harper, also a United captain; their two children, Annie and Sam Harper; and her mother, Dorothy Haley of Tracy.

When the United 757 rolled up to the gate at Denver International Airport, it was greeted by a water bridge formed by pumps on two airport fire engines.

“It was great having members of my family in the plane, and the water salute was really something,” she said.

Jean, 63, was among four women who broke the airline-pilot gender barrier at United by earning their wings in 1978 — fulfilling a dream she had since she learned to fly as a teenager at Tracy Municipal Airport in the 1960s.

Her instructor was her father, the late Frank Haley, who was managing the airport and flying as a crop-duster at the time. He died in a 1976 crop-duster crash.

Jean, a 1968 graduate of Tracy High School, continued down the path to become a commercial pilot by attending San Joaquin Delta College for two years and enrolling in the aviation program at the University of North Dakota, where she received a bachelor’s degree in aviation administration in 1975.

She flew cargo planes for two years before being selected to begin United Airlines pilot training in Denver.

She received her wings in April 1978 and served as a 737 flight engineer and was on furlough for several years before becoming a co-pilot in 1986. She was promoted to captain in 1992. Her husband followed her as a United captain two years later and is still flying.

During her career with United, Jean flew only domestic routes, preferring not to fly overseas so she could return regularly to Denver to be with her family.

Her daughter, Annie, is employed by Intel in San Jose, and her son, Sam, is a student at California State University, Humboldt, majoring in marine biology and fisheries.

In retirement, Jean plans to do more writing — she has authored magazine articles and book segments. And she has a good feeling about being one of the pioneer female airline pilots.

“I feel delighted to have had a job that has allowed me to realize my dreams,” she said. “When I started, a woman in the cockpit was a big deal. Now it’s normal, and that’s just wonderful.”

Read more: Tracy Press - Tracing Tracy Territory Pioneer pilot retires from cockpit

Air Force Two, minus vice president, practices landings at University Park Airport (KUNV), State College, Pennsylvania

Plane used as Air Force Two at  University Park Airport  (KUNV) on June 19, 2013.   Pilot is a Penn State fan & asked to do landing exercises here.

Posted  June 21, 2013

STATE COLLEGE, PA  --The plane that jets around Vice President Joe Biden practiced landing exercises at the University Park Airport for about an hour Wednesday afternoon.

Details are scant, and the word is that Biden was not actually on the plane, a Boeing 737 that came here from Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland. 

Penn State published a photograph of the plane — showing Mount Nittany in the background — on Twitter on Thursday. University spokeswoman Jill Shockey said the person who snapped the photo did not want to be identified publicly.

The photo caption said the pilot of the plane is a Penn State fan who asked to do landing exercises here.

Bryan Rodgers, the director of the University Park Airport, said the plane completed touch-and-go landings but never made a full landing before it left the area.

No further information was available.

— Mike Dawson 

Story and Comments/Reaction:

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Rockwell 690B Turbo Commander, N727JA: Accident occurred June 20, 2013 near McClellanville, Charleston County, South Carolina

NTSB Identification: ERA13FA295 
 14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, June 20, 2013 in McClellanville, SC
Aircraft: ROCKWELL INTERNATIONAL 690B, registration: N727JA
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.


On June 20, 2013, about 1648 eastern daylight time, a Rockwell International 690B, N727JA, was destroyed following a collision with terrain after an in-flight loss of control near McClellanville, South Carolina. The private pilot and the flight instructor were fatally injured. The airplane was registered to a corporation and was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91, as an instructional flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and an instrument flight rules (IFR) flight plan was filed. The local flight originated at Charleston Executive Airport (JZI), Charleston, South Carolina about 1633.

The purpose of the flight was for the pilot to accomplish a CFR Part 61.56 flight review. After takeoff from JZI, the pilots requested maneuvering airspace for airwork over the McClellanville area, at an altitude block of 13,000 to 15,000 feet above mean sea level (msl). About 1646, the air traffic controller asked the pilot to say his heading, and there was no response. Radar contact was lost and search and rescue operations were initiated. Based on a witness report, local responders found the wreckage within the boundary of the Francis Marion National Forest in Charleston County.

A review of recorded radar data revealed that, about 14,000 feet msl and about 3 miles southeast of the accident site, the airplane was observed in two constant-altitude 360-degree turns; the first to the right and the second to the left. The airplane then was observed on a north-northeasterly heading for about 2.5 miles, when an abrupt right turn, accompanied by a loss of altitude, occurred. At 1646:51, the radar track showed the airplane crossing U.S. Highway 17 at 12,100 feet. Concurrently, a keyed microphone could be heard on the recorded voice communications, with loud background noise that lasted for about seven seconds, and a single voice making an unintelligible sound similar to "ahhh…" The airplane was then observed entering a steep, descending left turn, losing about 7,500 feet in 28 seconds. The last radar return was at 1647:19, when the airplane was at 4,600 feet msl.

A witness, who was traveling southbound on Highway 17 at the time, observed the airplane in flight for "a couple of seconds." He observed the airplane in the left upper corner of his windshield. His car windows were up and he could not hear anything. When he saw the airplane, the belly was facing him and the nose was "completely vertical down" prior to it entering the trees. He observed both wings and the tail and he did not see anything missing from the airplane. No smoke was observed.

Another witness was working outside, at his residence, at the time of the accident. The airplane was "…either circling or looping and it did this for several minutes." The engine sounded "strained" and the "…engine speed was being changed." He then heard a "thud" and the engine noise stopped.


The private pilot, seated in the left cockpit seat, held airplane single engine land, airplane single engine sea, airplane multiengine land, and instrument airplane ratings. His personal pilot logbook(s) was not located after the accident. On his most recent FAA Class 1 medical certificate application, dated May 20, 2013, he reported 1,540 hours total time, including 106 hours in the previous six months. His total flight time in the accident airplane was not determined.

The flight instructor and airline transport pilot, seated in the right cockpit seat, held airplane single engine land, airplane single engine sea, airplane multiengine land, airplane multiengine sea, and instrument airplane ratings. He also held a flight instructor certificate for airplane single engine land, airplane multiengine land, and instrument airplane. On his most recent FAA Class 1 medical certificate application, dated May 8, 2013, he reported 22,300 hours total time, including 75 hours in the previous six months.

The flight instructor's personal pilot logbook(s) was not located after the accident; however, an undated resume of his flight experience was provided to investigators. The resume listed a variety of type ratings and formal training courses completed, including FlightSafety International training in the Turbo Commander. The resume listed more than 5,800 hours in turboprop airplanes and more than 4,100 hours as a flight instructor.

Reportedly, the flight instructor had not flown with the pilot previous to the accident flight.


The airplane was a twin engine, high-wing, retractable landing gear, turboprop airplane, serial number 11399. It was powered by two Allied Signal TPE331-10T-516K engines rated at 776 shaft horsepower each. The engines were fitted with Hartzell three-bladed adjustable pitch propellers.

A review of the aircraft maintenance records indicated that an annual inspection of the airframe and engines was performed on March 4, 2013. The aircraft total time at the time of the annual inspection was 12,192.6 hours. The annual inspection was the most recent maintenance logbook entry in the aircraft and engine records.

The 1655 surface weather observation for Mount Pleasant, South Carolina (LRO) included few clouds at 3,400 feet, scattered clouds at 4,700 feet, broken clouds at 6,000 feet, wind calm, 7 miles visibility, temperature 24 degrees C, dew point 23 degrees C, and altimeter 30.14 inches of mercury.
The review of local weather data revealed no convective activity or thunderstorms in the immediate in the area at the time of the accident.


The accident site was situated on level ground on the grounds of the Francis Marion National Forest. The first point of impact was trees, then the ground. The accident site consisted of a swamp. The coordinates of the first observed impact with trees were 33.06239N, 079.52365W. The coordinates of the main wreckage (cockpit area) were 33.06193N, 079.52374W. The total length of the wreckage path was about 290 feet in length and 40 feet in width. The magnetic heading from initial tree impact to the cockpit was about 190 degrees.

Measurements of the path through the trees was consistent with the airplane in a right bank of about 42 degrees and a descent angle of about 21 degrees. The wreckage was generally fragmented. There was no fire.

All aircraft fuel tanks were breached during the impact sequence. There was a strong odor of jet fuel prevalent throughout the wreckage path.

The left engine was separated from the airframe during the impact sequence and was found adjacent to the cockpit area. The right engine was located attached to the right, inboard wing section that was separated from the main wreckage and crushed against trees during the initial impact sequence.

Several smoothly-cut tree branches were found at the area of initial tree impact. The disbursement of the branches was consistent with contact by both engine propellers.

The wreckage was recovered to a storage facility at Griffin, Georgia, where a detailed examination of the wreckage was performed. All major structural components of the airframe, including all flight control surfaces, were accounted for.

Flight control cable continuity could not be completely established due to the general fragmentation of the wreckage. Cable ends that were identified exhibited overstress indications or were torn from their attachment points.

The landing gear selector handle was found in the up, or retracted, position. The physical position of the landing gear could not be determined due to impact damage. The position of the flaps at the time of the accident could not be determined due to impact damage.

An external examination of the engines was performed during the wreckage review. No evidence of uncontained failure or in-flight fire was observed. The engines were shipped to the manufacturer's facility in Phoenix, Arizona, for a teardown examination under the direction of the NTSB Investigator-in-Charge (IIC).

The propeller assemblies were examined during the wreckage review. Both propellers had similar damage. Each one had the cylinder/piston fractured off. Both propellers were missing their spinners.

The left propeller was still attached to the gearbox; however, the gearbox was separated from the engine due to a fractured engine shaft. The propeller experienced damage due to impact and a power setting or blade angle could not be established; however, slight curved tips and some rotational scoring was noted on the blades.

The right propeller was still attached to the gearbox; however, the gearbox had separated from the engine due to a fractured engine shaft. The "R3" blade was fractured off the clamp assembly. All three blades had slight twisting signatures.

No anomalies were noted with either propeller assembly that would have precluded normal operation. For additional information regarding the examination of the propellers, refer to the Hartzell Propeller Examination Reports, located in the public docket for this accident.



A postmortem examination of the pilot was performed at the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina on June 21, 2013. The autopsy report noted the cause of death as "Full body blunt trauma due to General aviation collision with ejection" and the manner of death was "Accident.".

Forensic toxicology testing was performed on specimens of the pilot by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory (CAMI), Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The CAMI toxicology report indicated negative for carbon monoxide, ethanol, and drugs. Testing for cyanide was not performed.

Flight Instructor

A postmortem examination of the flight instructor was performed at the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina on June 22, 2013. The autopsy report noted the cause of death as "Full body blunt force trauma" and the manner of death was "Accident.".

Forensic toxicology testing was performed on specimens of the flight instructor by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory (CAMI), Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The CAMI toxicology report indicated negative for ethanol. Testing for carbon monoxide and cyanide was not performed. The report indicated that there was diphenhydramine in the liver and urine, pioglitazone in the liver and urine, and 47.3 ug/ml salicylate in the urine.

Diphenhydramine (Benadryl® or Sominex®) is an over-the-counter sedating antihistamine used to treat allergies and Sominex® is marketed as a non-prescription sleep aid. A determination of possible impairment was not possible since there was no blood available for testing.

Pioglitazone (Actos®) is a prescription oral antidiabetic agent that acts primarily by increasing uptake of glucose by peripheral organs and decreasing glucose production by the liver. It is used in the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus. According to CAMI, the flight instructor had diabetes that was treated and controlled with oral medications and was issued a Class 1, Restricted Medical Certificate, not valid for any class after May 31, 2014. He had also lost an eye due to an injury years ago; however, he was evaluated at 20/20 visual acuity in his remaining eye during his most recent FAA medical examination.

Salicylate is a metabolite of aspirin, an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication to treat aches and pains, as an antipyretic to reduce fever.

The report also noted 127 mg/dl glucose in the urine. Postmortem urine levels above 100 mg/dL are considered abnormal. No blood was available for hemoglobin A1C analysis.


Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System

The airplane was equipped with a Honeywell Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System (EGPWS). The outer case sustained minor damage; however, the internal memory survived the impact. The unit was sent to Honeywell for download of the data under the direction of a NTSB air safety investigator. Although the unit captured the final portion of the accident flight, the data, according to the manufacturer, was not accurate. The position data was observed in the "dead reckoning" mode, indicating that the GPS data was invalid or went out of navigation mode. This resulted in significant inaccuracies in the aircraft position data toward the end of the recording.


The engines were examined at the Honeywell facilities at Phoenix, Arizona on September 16 through 18, 2013, under the direction of the NTSB IIC.

The teardown and examination of the left engine, S/N P-79794C, revealed that the type and degree of damage was indicative of an engine that was rotating and operating at the time of impact. Numerous indicators of rotation and operation were noted, including rotational scoring, ingested and burned organic debris, and metal spray adhesion. No pre-existing condition was found that would have prevented normal operation.

The teardown and examination of the right engine, S/N P-79792C, revealed that the type and degree of damage was indicative of an engine that was rotating and operating at the time of impact. Numerous indicators of rotation and operation were noted, including rotational scoring, ingested and burned organic debris, and metal spray adhesion. No pre-existing condition was found that would have prevented normal operation.

For additional information regarding the examination of the engines, refer to the Honeywell Engine Examination Reports, located in the public docket for this accident.

MCCLELLANVILLE, S.C. (WCIV) -- An officials from the National Transportation Safety Board office in Atlanta was dispatched to McClellanville overnight to survey the wreckage from a downed plane. 

The coroner's office identified the victims of the crash 44-year-old Patrick Eudy and 69-year-old Robert Ulrich.

Officials at the scene do not know when the National Transportation Safety Board inspector will arrive at the scene, but a press conference to provide an update on the recovery has been slated for 3 p.m. Friday. 

Once the National Transportation Safety Board inspector has surveyed the damage, a preliminary report will be issued 10 days later.

The plane, identified by the Federal Aviation Administration as a Rockwell 690B Turbo Commander, went down about 40 miles north of Charleston Thursday afternoon. On Friday, the flight agency identified the plane's tail number as N727JA.

According to FlightAware, the plane left Charleston Executive Airport on Johns Island Thursday afternoon. That plane's tail number is registered to Nighthawk Air, LLC, a company out of Matthews, N.C.

Officials said the plane was found about two miles from South Tibwin Road, off Highway 17. The Federal Aviation Administration said the plane left the airport on a training flight to Georgetown and had a planned return to Johns Island.

Awendaw Fire Department Battalion Chief Fred Tetor said the area where the plane was found was marshy, about knee deep, two miles from the command post near Highway 17.

"There are a couple of big ditches back there. We've had to put some ladders to go from land mass to land mass to get to some of those areas. That was some of the biggest challenges. It's just muddy there," Tetor said.

Chief Tetor said the area is difficult to navigate. They had to bring ladders to get across certain areas. Tetor also told the Associated Press that those at the site could smell fuel.

The wreckage of an airplane crash in McClellanville that killed two people on board on June 20.

What sounded like a scream was heard over the radio. Within five minutes, air traffic controllers had lost all contact with a pilot and a flight instructor aboard the turboprop plane that had been 15,000 feet above McClellanville. 
Minutes later, someone reported seeing a plane plummeting into the woods of the Francis Marion National Forest.

In the 10 minutes the plane spent in the air, something had gone terribly wrong.

When investigators found the wreckage, twisted metal and tree branches spanned 290 feet in a swamp, along with the bodies of the two men on board.

These final moments and other details about the fatal plane crash in June were released this month in a report by the National Transportation Safety Board, the agency investigating the crash.

The report details information about the flight, the aircraft, the wreck, the pilots' medical and flight backgrounds and other details that will be used to determine what caused the plane to crash.

The final report is expected to be released in the next three months, but a nine-page report released March 6 provides further insight into the accident that killed 44-year-old Patrick Eudy, of Mount Pleasant, and instructor Robert Ulrich, 69, of Bellevue, Idaho, on June 20.

Flight experience

It was the first time in the air together for Eudy and Ulrich, according to the report. Ulrich was a flight instructor and Eudy was trying to get recertified on flying the plane he owned, a 1977 Rockwell International 690B.

It was supposed to be a routine flight.

Eudy, president and CEO of the Matthews, N.C.-based telecommunications firm American Broadband, had spent more than 1,500 hours in the air as a pilot, according to the NTSB report.

It remains unclear how many times he had flown the eight-seat Rockwell that friends say he had owned for three or four years.

Ulrich had spent more than 22,000 hours in flight, including 75 hours in the six months before the crash, according to the NTSB reports. Nearly 20 percent of the time Ulrich spent in the air was as a flight instructor, the reports stated.

Ulrich had been issued a Restricted Medical Certificate after losing an eye to an injury, but his Federal Aviation Authority medical exam showed he had 20/20 vision in his remaining eye.

Ulrich also suffered from diabetes, according to the report, but the report does not indicate if his or Eudy's health played any part in the crash. Eudy and Ulrich tested negative for drugs and alcohol, according to the forensic toxicology results listed in the NTSB report.

The flight

Eudy and Ulrich departed from the Charleston Executive Airport on Johns Island at 4:29 p.m.

Either Eudy or Ulrich told air traffic control they wanted to do some air work and asked to fly at about 15,000 feet, according to a transcript of the audio recordings between the plane and air traffic.

About 15 minutes later, one of the pilots said they were doing 360-degree turns at about 14,000 feet and were going to be doing that for another 10 minutes, according to the transcript.

A map based on radar data indicates the plane did two 360 turns, the first to the right and the second to the left.

A few seconds into the second turn, one of the pilots said "thank you, sir" to air traffic control, which had approved the request to spend another 10 minutes doing turns.

That was the last recorded transmission known from the plane.

Air traffic control attempted to contact Eudy and Ulrich, but there was no answer and the plane disappeared from the radar, the report stated.

On the ground, a witness saw the plane doing the two 360-degree turns, then saw the plane abruptly turn right while starting to lose altitude, according to the report.

Radar showed the plane crossed U.S. Highway 17 at 12,100 feet.

Less than two minutes later, a loud background noise, which lasted for about seven seconds, along with a single voice making a sound similar to "ahhh" was heard on the radio, according to the transcript, but aviation officials could not determine what plane it came from.

Within seconds, a witness saw the plane turn left while dropping another 7,500 feet within 28 seconds.

A witness said the nose was "completely vertical down" before the propellers ripped through the trees of the forest and crashed into the swamp, according to the report.

The plane did not catch fire before, during or after impact, the report stated.

When first responders arrived, the smell of jet fuel filled the air.

The coroner later determined that Ulrich and Eudy died of full body blunt force trauma.

The plane

The twin-engine plane had been inspected three months before the crash, and the plane's two engines appeared to be working at the time the plane crashed, according to the findings by NTSB.

No problems were found with the propellers' assembly that could have led to a malfunction. Both propellers were missing a piece called the spinner, but NTSB did not indicate whether that occurred before or after the crash.

While the report appears to rule out certain possibilities for the cause of the crash and describes how the plane went down, it does not yet show why it went down.

NTSB officials said their final report detailing the cause of a crash is usually published one year after an incident.

Beech 65-A90-1, N903MD: Maryland Agriculture Department begins aerial spraying for mosquitoes in Dorchester Neck District and Town Point

Posted: Thursday, June 20, 2013 4:05 pm

CAMBRIDGE -- Plans to spray insecticide for mosquito control were announced Wednesday by the Maryland Department of Agriculture.

Weather permitting, the MDOA spokesman said, aerial spray for adult mosquito control should have begun Thursday evening in Dorchester Neck District and Town Point communities, and will continue until approximately 16,000 acres are treated.

The MDOA aircraft used for this operation is a white, twin-engine plane with red and blue stripes, registration number N903MD. It will be flying between 300 and 500 feet above the ground during the evening hours after sunset.

The insecticide being used, Trumpet, contains naled, a synthetic insecticide noted for low toxicity to animals and people. The MDOA notes that it is not necessary for people, pets or livestock to leave the area to be treated.

San Francisco pilot, passenger plead guilty in Texas marijuana flight, arrested at Lubbock Aero -- Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport (KLBB), Texas: Piper Archer III, N342TA

  Michael Paul Gallanter 
(Source: Lubbock County Sheriff's Office)

Ethan Oliver Wynne-Wade 
(Source: Lubbock County Sheriff's Office)

Here is the press release from the Department of Justice: 

Pilot and Passenger from San Francisco, Whose Plane Was Met by CBP Air Interdiction as it Landed in Lubbock, Plead Guilty to Federal Drug Charges

LUBBOCK, Texas -- Two men, who flew into Lubbock and arrived at Lubbock Aero on Wednesday evening, April 17, 2013, Michael Gallanter, 48, and Ethan Oliver Wynne-Wade, 31, each appeared this morning before U.S. District Judge Sam R. Cummings and pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute more than 50 kilograms, but less than 100 kilograms, of marijuana.   They each face a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in federal prison and a $1 million fine.  Judge Cummings ordered presentence investigation reports with sentencing dates to be set after the completion of those reports.  Both defendants remain on bond.  Today's announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaa of the Northern District of Texas.

Gallanter and Wynne-Wade were arrested after their arrival in Lubbock and charged in a federal criminal complaint.  Subsequently, on May 15, 2013, a federal grand jury in Lubbock indicted them for possession with intent to distribute marijuana, hashish and psilocin/psilocybin.

According to documents filed in the case, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air Interdiction agents had received information that that a Piper PA28-181 aircraft, tail number N342TA, was operating under suspicious circumstances, in that the occupants of the aircraft paid for their fuel with cash, fueled their own plane, had a large amount of luggage in the aircraft's passenger compartment and departed in poor weather conditions.   Agents also had information that the aircraft had been rented from the Travis Air Force Base Aero Club in Rio Vista, California, where some individuals renting aircraft were breaking flight rules and procedures.

CBP launched a Citation Interceptor Jet in an attempt to locate the aircraft.  On April 17, 2013, at approximately 10:15 p.m., CBP Air Interdiction agents contacted the aircraft to conduct a ramp check as it was about to refuel at Lubbock Aero, a refueling location located at the Lubbock International Airport.   Agents identified Gallanter as the pilot and Wynne-Wade as the passenger.

CBP Air Interdiction agents met Gallanter as he deplaned and per their request, Gallanter provided them with the appropriate flight paperwork.  After a drug detector dog alerted to the presence of drugs, the plane was then searched by federal agents.  Agents located six large military-style duffle bags and four smaller bags inside the passenger compartment.  Agents opened the bags and located 98 plastic bags of marijuana, four plastic bags of hashish and two plastic bags of psilocin mushrooms.  In total, agents located approximately 69 kilograms of marijuana, four kilograms of hashish, and 1.37 kilograms of psilocin mushrooms.

The investigation is being conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), CBP Air Interdiction, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Lubbock Police Department.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Justin Cunningham is in charge of the prosecution.


Airplane drug traffickers plead guilty to intent to distribute, possession

 Grand jury indicts 2 men arrested in April drug bust

Pilot arrested in drug bust says he didn't know what was on board

200 lbs. of marijuana seized in Lubbock drug bust

Beech A36, N20651: Cell phone call guides pilot to safety

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. A pilot making his way across Western Colorado was forced to make an emergency landing in Grand Junction on Tuesday morning. On Wednesday the pilot met the man who helped bring him to the ground safely.

On the morning of the incident, the two strangers formed an unbreakable bond.

Gene Manzanares, master coordination center officer for TSA in Grand Junction, said, "At 8:01 our customer service line rang and Mr. Cody was on the other end. He gave me his tail number and his aircraft type and told me he was declaring and emergency."

Pilot Raymond Cody said, "Contacted Gene at TSA, it was the only phone number that I had. I had a little anxiety I had to be honest with you."

Mid-flight Cody lost power, and he couldn't get back on the ground by himself.

"The airplane motor wasn't an issue of stopping, it was only the electronics in the airplane. So I had no radio, I had no navigation equipment," said Cody.

He says he was blind in the air, but thanks to the man on the other end of the line, blind with good sight.

"I was the one talking to him directly and the one talking to the tower and to the airport fire and rescue through our radios, so I was doing all three," said Manzanares.

However, an incident like this was a first for the TSA employee.

"I haven't been trained to bring a pilot in but we made it happen," Manzanares said.

"Gene's my hero, how's that? Yeah he is, he was real calm, kept me calm, and I do appreciate it," said Cody.

Cody has some advice for pilots who encounter similar situations, "Call Gene!"

Cody says this incident will not deter him from getting back in the air, and Manzanares says he would gladly fly with Cody any day. 

Greg Koontz and the Alabama Boys wow crowds at Sentimental Journey: William T. Piper Memorial Airport (KLHV), Lock Haven, Pennsylvania


June 20, 2013
By ERIN TIERNEY,  The Express - Lockhaven

In the next couple of days when you look to the sky, don't be alarmed if you see a Cub flying haphazardly over Piper Airport - it's just Greg Koontz doing his job.

Greg Koontz and the Alabama Boys, the infamous airshow entertainers, are captivating the crowds at Sentimental Journey with their zany air antics throughout the week.

Koontz's aerobatic shows started yesterday, and left no one disappointed.

Koontz leaves a trail behind his Cub as he zooms through the air during his performance.

Steve Johnston and his flying friends from Zelienople decided to come to Sentimental Journey on a whim.

Johnston said he was glad he came, especially after witnessing Koontz's show yesterday.

"I've seen videos of these stunts done before on YouTube, but never knew who did them," Johnston said. "It's such a great experience to see someone who is actually famous doing this amazing show. His moves are just unbelievable."

Amongst the crowd were also the youngsters of Williamsport's Paddington Station Pre-school and Childcare, Inc.

As the airshow unraveled, the kids' eyes were glued to the sky.

The youngsters shrieked, covered their eyes, laughed, clapped and smiled as they watched the show unravel.

Greg Koontz was just as pleased to be here as the crowd.

"When I got invited to the Sentimental Journey, I almost got choked up," Koontz said. "Being here is a really personal thing. When I was 17, I restored a 1946 Piper J-3 Cub in my mom's garage," Koontz said. "If someone would have told me when I was a kid that I would one day be performing shows at the birthplace of the Cub, I would laugh in their face-there would be no way I'd believe them."

And now here he is, entertaining crowds and doing what he loves most for a living.

Koontz said that the Journey is different from other events because of the atmosphere.

"This event is so laid back," Koontz said. "We all just sit around, have fun and talk about airplanes all day. We're all livin' the dream!"

The atmosphere can easily be attributed to all the welcoming people at the Journey.

"Everyone here is so nice and happy to be here. It's great," Koontz said. "And that FUBAR gang- what a crowd! Last year, they bought four chairs with our names on them, and put them outside their camping area, just to make sure that we'd hang out with them at night."

Greg Koontz and his Alabama Boys will be performing for the next three days and is always welcoming of new friends:

- Wednesday, June 19, 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.

- Thursday, June 20, 6 p.m.

- Friday, June 21, 4:30 p.m.

- Saturday, June 22, 3 p.m.


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Phillips Field Airport (MO23), California, Missouri: The annual fly-in draws crowd

Ron Hansen takes off from the California Phillips Field in a Bellanca Cruisemaster on Saturday, June 8.

Originally published June 19, 2013 at 6 a.m., updated June 18, 2013 at 11:51 a.m. 

The good weather undoubtedly contributed to the number of people drawn to the annual fly-in event at Phillips Field a couple of miles northeast of California. The smooth 2500-ft grass runway ranges from 50 to 130 feet wide.

The field has several new hangars and new members who have recently joined the non-profit club. It is not necessary to be a pilot to be a member.

The flying club hosted the "Cal-MO Flying Club Fly-in & Pig Roast" on Saturday, June 8. it was attended by 82 people who were interested in aviation and food. William R. Elliott, armed with a camera, took a large number of photos of the event, several of which have been submitted to the California Democrat.

Visiting pilots flew in to the event bringing the number of planes on the field on Saturday to 14. Following a lunch of pulled pork, brats, and side dishes, children and families went on a Pilot Tour to see the planes and talk to the pilots.

There were also several "planes" built just for the younger set. One was an educational toy trainer, built by Dale Carlson, for practice flying and another was a Stearman kiddie biplane, built by Bill Elliott, for photo shoots.

Phillips Field is a private airport about two miles northeast of California on Airport Road. For information contact Tom Winters at 573-301-7146 or Gerald Wood at 573-480-1300. Airport Road is about a mile north of Business 50 on Industrial Drive. The gate at Phillips Field is about eight-tenths of a mile east of Industrial Road and is prominently marked with a sign with "Phillips Field" and an airplane on it. The gate and hangars are usually locked.

Story and Photos:

Mount Everest Airport Will Terrify You (PHOTOS)

Lukla airport


Published: June 18, 2013, 3:02 PM EDT Associated Press 

LUKLA, Nepal - As soon as the decades-old Twin Otter landed at Lukla airport, passengers burst out in applause. They do that for nearly every safe landing at the often terrifying airport at the gateway to Mount Everest.

At an altitude of 2,843 meters (9,325 feet), the small airstrip here has earned a reputation as one of the most extreme and dangerous airports in the world. The single runway is narrow, short and sloped. Miss the runway by a few meters (or feet) and the plane would hit a mountain.

"After you cross the river there is no turning back, you have to land," said Pramod Poudel, a Tara Air pilot who has flown hundreds of these flights to Lukla.

Carved out of the side of a mountain, the airport was built by Sir Edmund Hillary in 1965 — 12 years after he became the first man to conquer the world's highest peak — to help the local yak herders known as Sherpas spur development in the impoverished area.

Now what once was a dirt strip is one of Nepal's busiest airports, the Tenzing-Hillary Airport — named as well for Hillary's climbing partner Tenzing Norgay. The thousands of mountaineers and trekkers who visit the Everest region have to fly to the airport if they want to avoid a daylong bus trip from Katmandu and five days of trekking to reach here. The airport has handled up to 79 flights on one day — far beyond the acceptable capacity for such a facility, said Rinji, the airport's air traffic controller, who, like most Sherpas in the Everest region, uses only one name.

"It is really challenging, because of the geographical location of the airport and high mountains that surround it. Topography is challenging and the traffic volume is challenging," said Rinji. "There is little space for aircraft to maneuver because of the high mountains and narrow valley."

Poudel, the pilot, said he and his colleagues need to concentrate hard when landing on the single runway, which is less than 500 meters (yards) long, slopes some 12 degrees and is barely 20 meters (65 feet) wide.

"Because there is no way to go around again, we have to calculate many things like air speed, tail wind, fog," he said. "If you don't do the proper calculation or proper exercise, then it" — meaning an accident — "happens."

The airport can only handle special short take-off and landing (STOL) aircraft like the Twin Otter or Dronier that take about 18 passengers. It has room for only four of these planes to be parked at one time. The runway is one-way for both takeoff and landing. Aircraft have to land from the southwest and take off toward the northeast because at the end of one side of the runway is a mountain. When winds are blowing in an unfavorable direction, all takeoffs and landings have to stop.

Read more and photo gallery:

Glasair SH-2F, N15GG: Accident occurred June 12, 2013 in Montague, California

NTSB Identification: WPR13FA269
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, June 12, 2013 in Montague, CA
Aircraft: GRAVES LARRY L SH-2F, registration: N15GG
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 June 12, 2013, about 0715 Pacific daylight time, an experimental amateur built Graves SH-2F airplane, N15GG, was destroyed when it impacted terrain near Montague, California. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The private pilot and commercial pilot were fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight. The local flight originated from the Montague Airport - Yreka Rohrer Field (105) near Montague at an unknown time.

According to local law enforcement, witnesses located near the accident site reported hearing the sound of an airplane maneuvering followed by the sound of impact. Shortly after, the witnesses located the airplane wreckage in an open field. There were no reported witnesses to the accident sequence.

A manager of a local Fixed Base Operator (FBO) reported that the owner of the airplane was selling the airplane and was going to flying with another pilot in an effort to “get a feel for the airplane" so they could demonstrate it to potential buyers.

Examination of the accident site by local law enforcement revealed that the airplane impacted an open field and came to rest inverted. All major structural components of the airplane were located within about 40 feet of the main wreckage. The wreckage was recovered to a secure location for further examination.

Lloyd Rugg

Lloyd Rugg 

Sweet husband, wonderful son and father, superb pilot and strong, hardworking quiet man Lloyd Rugg left this world on June 12, 2013.

He was with his good friend Larry Graves doing what they loved – flying on a beautiful, calm and peaceful morning.

"Our son Tom, being the fine reflection of his father, Lloyd, will for now work with our trusted friends Don Smith and Ken Bolton at Shasta Valley Tire. Lloyd began the business with his father, Bud, 43 years ago. Lloyd's mother, Marjorie, continues on as always, carefully doing the books despite the heartbreaking event."

A memorial for Lloyd will be at the little Montague airport at 9 a.m. on Sunday, June 30, followed by a celebration of life for Larry Graves at the Montague Community Hall at 10 a.m.

 "We are so very grateful to family and friends for their generous support."


Former airline pilot Iain Lawrence trial: 'Leg spasm caused wife's death'

 Sally Lawrence died after the car she was traveling in crashed into a tree in Leicestershire 

18 June 2013 Last updated at 22:25

A former pilot accused of deliberately crashing his car to kill his wife told a jury he suffered a spasm in his leg leaving him unable to drive properly.

Iain Lawrence, of Ratcliffe Road, Leicester, who denies murder, told a jury the crash which killed his wife Sally Lawrence was an accident.

He is accused of deliberately crashing the car to kill her because he could not cope with their divorce.

Mr Lawrence said he could not get his foot off the accelerator.

'Other leg numb'

The prosecution at Leicester Crown Court alleged the former airline pilot crashed the car in Oadby, near Leicester, after an "acrimonious conversation" the night before.

But Mr Lawrence, 53, said his leg went into a "full blown" spasm sending an "excruciating" pain down to his toes.

"It's horrendous. You can't move. I've just got to hold on for grim death. It hurts so much," he said.

"I put my right leg straight down onto the accelerator. Sally shouted 'What's happening?' because I was holding on tight at the time.

"I was trying to get my foot off the accelerator. I shouted 'It's my leg'."

Asked why he did not try to brake he said his left leg had also gone numb, adding that he did not try to steer out of the way.

He also denied accusations that the airbag had been disabled and Mrs Lawrence's seatbelt was not fastened.

Earlier in the trial, the court heard the pair, who have one child together, had an "acrimonious conversation" the night before the crash about divorce and their finances.

But Mr Lawrence told the jury it was an amicable split and his wife, who had two children from a previous relationship, was his "soul mate".

The court also heard that he could not remember the crash until he had a nightmare about a month after it happened in October last year.

The trial continues.


Air Mods Flight & Service Center located in the Trenton-Robbinsville Airport (N87) -- Robbinsville, New Jersey

Co-owners of Air Mods Flight & Service Center located in the Trenton Robbinsville Airport, Dave Mathiesen, left and fiancee Lisa Campbell. Air Mods offers airplane inspections, maintenance, pre-purchase inspections, flight instruction/training, airplane detailing, has airplanes for sale and an online computer testing center for students to take their pilot exams. 

Michael Mancuso/The Times

Air Mods Flight & Service Center 
See Photo Gallery:

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Firm seeks Federal Aviation Administration OK for tall Vegas Strip thrill ride

FOX5 Vegas - KVVU 

Posted June 17, 2013 - 6:06pm 
Updated June 18, 2013 - 6:21am 


As Las Vegas turns to high-adrenaline rides to freshen its appeal to visitors, one developer has quietly started to move ahead with a roller coaster that would look down on all but one building on the Strip.

U.S. Thrill Rides LLC has submitted plans to the Federal Aviation Administration in April to build the 650-foot-tall Polercoaster, the company’s name for a scream machine that combines an observation tower with a coaster on the way up and down. Because of the height and location — a map with the application shows it at the Tropicana — the agency must assess any potential hazard posed to the planes flying in and out of nearby McCarran International Airport.

Because the Federal Aviation Administration is still evaluating the project, critical pieces such as financing and a firm deal on the site still have not fallen into place.

However, U.S. Thrill Rides President Michael Kitchen said the company has held discussions with banks willing to furnish loans for the Polercoaster, with an estimated cost approaching $100 million.

He declined to comment on the location. A spokeswoman for Tropicana did not comment.

“This will be the tallest roller coaster in the world,” he said. “Since Las Vegas is one of the top tourist destinations in the world, we think it will get higher visibility and foot traffic than other places.”

Windmere, Fla.-based U.S. Thrill Rides has built about 300 rides, many of them roller coasters for amusement parks. Company founder and CEO Bill Kitchen, Michael Kitchen’s father, said he conceived the Polercoaster idea as a way to add a thrill ride to an existing destination that lacks much open land.

“It goes very high, so you get an enormous amount of thrill from a very small amount of space,” Bill Kitchen said. “Using a couple of acres that you would need for a regular roller coaster would be out of reach on the Strip because of the cost.”

The Polercoast would resemble something like the Stratosphere tower, with a round top that would including dining, retail and an observation deck. The Stratosphere, at 1,149 feet, would still be far taller.

On the Strip, only the unfinished Fontainbleau resort at 735 feet has gone higher than the proposed Polercoaster; the Palazzo would be 8 feet shorter.

Polercoaster’s center core would contain two glass elevators to the top for people who just want to look but not ride. Around that would run a regular spiral track to guide the eight self-propelled passenger cars to the top. Outside of that and the structure’s supporting pillars would be downhill ride, including several twists, turns and loops.

Altitude has become something of the new theme for inducing tourists to leave more of their money in Las Vegas. The attractions include:

■ The Slotzilla zip line, now under construction on Fremont Street.

■ A hybrid zip line and ski lift that would whisk visitors from the top of one tower at Rio to the other and back. The Federal Aviation Administration approval became final on Saturday.

■ The 550-foot High Roller observation wheel that Caesars Entertainment is building just off the Strip next to the Flamingo as part of The Linq.

■ A multi-stage zip line connecting MGM Resorts International’s Luxor and Excalibur resorts. A company spokeswoman said the project is in the design phase after a monthslong process in which the Federal Aviation Administration  decertified a heliport on the Excalibur’s roof that was an obstacle to approving the zip line.

U.S. Thrill Rides currently does not operate a ride in Las Vegas but had the Sky Screamer ride in the mid-1990s that was part of the now-dismantled amusement park at the MGM Grand.

Story and Comments/Reaction:

Opinion/Letter: Noise from skydiving business is disturbing neighborhood


June 18, 2013 2:27 PM 


We used to have nice quiet neighborhoods on the west side of Lancaster, where families were attracted to locate and build new homes to enjoy quiet neighborhoods. Its less quiet since the county was forced by the Federal Aviation Administration to allow this noisy business to locate at the airport.

The noisy planes from the business climb in a circular pattern over our city and homes at full throttle to get to a high elevation to drop off the skydivers. Then the plane sounds like a World War II dive bomber as it quickly dives in a tight circular pattern back to the airport to repeat the noise cycle all day. The owner of the business moved it from the Columbus area to the county’s airport in 2011. The skydiving business used to operate from a private airstrip about 10 miles southwest of Rickenbacker Airport. Was this business forced to move because of the noise the planes were creating over the rapidly expanding Columbus metro area? The business advertises to attract skydivers from all over central Ohio to come to Lancaster and state that it is the No. 1 skydiving operation in Ohio and only one in central Ohio.

See Hopefully, there is a way the business can operate without creating all the noise. For example, why don’t the planes climb and dive farther north or west of the airport over the farm land miles away from the city? Can they use quieter airplanes or props or not use full throttle over the city? Other planes flying over the city are not as noisy.

At least the planes should stop power diving in a tight circle back down to land. One would think the flight back down could be the quietest, but instead it’s the noisiest. Listen to the noise at

I understand that the the airport is getting some taxpayers money to improve the airport. How much of our tax dollars are being used to support this noise-making business? Here is an example of what one airport did in U.S. to help address this.

Bruce Goff



Boeing Wins Orders for Stretched 787: WSJ

June 18, 2013, 7:31 a.m. ET 


The Wall Street Journal

LE BOURGET, France—Boeing Co. said Tuesday it had signed up the first five customers for a new stretched version of its 787 Dreamliner, a milestone in a marketing push it hopes will reignite sales of the aircraft after the current version was temporarily grounded this year.

The orders it received for 102 of the enlarged Dreamliners are valued at a total of nearly $30 billion at the plane's list price of $290 million, but the actual value is likely to be smaller because early customers tend to get steep discounts.

The buyers of the new plane, called the 787-10, include Air Lease Corp.,  International Consolidated Airlines Group SA's British Airways unit, General Electric Co.'s aircraft-leasing group Gecas, Singapore Airlines Ltd. and United Continental Holdings Inc.

The 787-10 is designed to compete with the newest plane from Airbus, the A350, which flew for the first time last week. Airbus, a unit of European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co. hopes the A350 will capture a large chunk of the market for long-distance wide-body aircraft. Boeing also aims to launch a new, larger version of its 777 by year's end to fend off Airbus's assault on its most lucrative jets.

The orders unveiled Tuesday prompted Boeing's board to formally approve the launch of the 787-10, allowing the company to commit to contracts and take deposits on the aircraft, as well as to prepare for design work and eventually manufacturing.

Boeing's board gave preliminary approval to the larger plane eight months ago, allowing the company's sales teams to begin negotiations with prospective buyers. The Wall Street Journal reported last week that Boeing would launch the 787-10 this week at the Paris air show.

Steven Udvar-H├ízy, chief executive of Air Lease, said he was pleased about the formal launch of the stretched Dreamliner, which he said he had been working with Boeing to design for the past 2½ years.

The 787-10, which has about 320 seats, is the third version of the Dreamliner, and is expected to be the last. The jet won't fly as far as the 787-8, the smaller 240-seat version of the jet, or the 787-9, a second version with 270 seats, which Boeing expects to start delivering next year.

The 787-8s, which are already in service, were grounded by global regulators from January through late April after twin incidents in which their lithium-ion batteries caught fire.

Boeing said Tuesday that the 787-10, which it plans to start delivering in 2018, will be as much as 25% more fuel-efficient than older aircraft with a similar range of up to about 7,000 nautical miles, or about 14 hours of flying.

The new orders put further pressure on Boeing to accelerate production of the Dreamliner beyond its current target of 10 jets a month, which it expects to hit at year's end. Boeing has additional factory space in its new North Charleston, S.C., facility to step up production, but such an increase largely depends on its vast supply chain, which has struggled in the past.

Airbus has announced commitments for its A380 and A320 during the air show, but new orders for the long-range A350 haven't materialized. John Leahy, Airbus chief operating officer for customers, has hinted some may be announced at the show.

Mr. Leahy was quick to criticize Boeing's new jet, comparing the 787-10 to another stretched wide-body Boeing developed early in the past decade, which met limited success. Boeing has already received nearly three times as many orders for the 787-10 as it did for the jet to which Mr. Leahy referred.

Air Lease said it would order 33 787s altogether, including 30 787-10s. Gecas is ordering 10 of the stretched version. United Airlines parent United Continental is ordering 10 new 787-10s and converting an order for 10 of the smaller versions of the plane into an order for the bigger aircraft. British Airways ordered 12 787-10s. Singapore Airlines has ordered 30.

Boeing also landed an order Tuesday for five of its 747-8 passenger jets and six 777-300ER jets from Korean Air Lines Inc.  The order is a boost for the struggling jumbo 747 as demand for large jets has slumped and the air-cargo market has remained stagnant, prompting Boeing to trim production for 2014.

—David Pearson and Daniel Michaels contributed to this article.  


Boeing 787 Makes Unscheduled Landing: WSJ

A Boeing Co. 787 Dreamliner operated by United Airlines on a flight from Denver to Tokyo made an unscheduled landing in Seattle because of an apparent problem with an oil filter on an engine.

The aircraft landed "normally and without incident," United, a unit of United Continental Holdings Inc. said.

Perry Cooper, a spokesman for Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, said emergency and fire personnel met the plane when it landed but determined there was no fire or other immediate threat, and left the issue to United's mechanics.

"There's no worry from our end," he said. "There's nothing visibly wrong with it."

There was no indication the incident was related to problems with the Dreamliner's lithium-ion batteries that prompted global regulators in mid-January to ground the jets for three months. Boeing received approval from regulators for a package of fixes designed to ensure the battery system's safety, which it installed on all Dreamliners in service before they resumed flights starting in late April.

Smaller-scale problems are common with new airplane models like the Dreamliner, which first entered commercial service in late 2011.

A Boeing spokeswoman shortly after the incident said the company was aware of the event and was "engaged with United to provide any support required." She said Boeing was also coordinating with General Electric Co. which makes the engines on United's Dreamliners.

United said flight 139 from Denver to Tokyo's Narita airport "diverted to Seattle due to an indication of a problem with an oil filter." The airline said it is working to accommodate the flight's passengers.

The plane took off from Denver International Airport at 3:19 p.m. EDT, about 45 minutes late. The aircraft flew past Seattle into Canada and then turned around. It landed at Seattle-Tacoma around 7:15 p.m. EDT, according to, a flight-tracking website.

United launched the Denver-to-Tokyo service on June 10 after a lengthy delay. It is the first-ever nonstop service between the two cities, and one of the routes that the 787 makes financially feasible because the Dreamliner has long range for an aircraft its size.

—Jason Dean contributed to this article.


Warren County might help Middletown Regional/Hook Field Airport (KMWO), Middletown, Ohio

An airplane lands at Middletown Regional/Hook Field Airport (KMWO).

Posted: 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, June 18, 2013 
By Denise G. Callahan

LEBANON —   The city of Middletown is looking at ways to enhance and expand operations at its airport, and it may have found a willing partner in the Warren County Port Authority.

Denise Hamet, Middletown’s economic development director, said there is a lot of undeveloped acreage at Hook Field and the demand for hangars — which are currently all filled — is increasing. She said the city is looking to expand educational opportunities at the airport such as flight and helicopter training, possibly through a partnership with Cincinnati State Community and Technical College. There is also federal money available to retrain military veterans that could be tapped.

“We think it’s a great economic development asset as other airports become full,” Hamet said. “We not only see the development of more hangar space, we would like to make it more of a gateway to Middletown.”

The future of the airport has been the subject of much speculation in recent months. Late last year, information was leaked from a Middletown City Council executive session that the city was considering selling Hook Field.

City officials downplayed the discussions as part of the budgeting process and their yearly evaluation of all its assets. The notion of selling the airport was also cast as unlikely because the city has 20 years worth of Federal Aviation Administration grants to repay.

Warren County Economic Development Director Martin Russell broached the subject of partnering with Middletown on future projects at the airport during the port authority’s board meeting on Monday. Middletown, which lies in Butler and Warren counties, could choose any port authority to partner with, even though the airport sits within Butler County.

Russell told the port authority’s board he was looking for guidance on whether they would be interested in reaching across the border. Some members expressed concern there could be political fallout with Butler County officials.

“Are there any unintended consequences that we haven’t thought about?” board member Jill Hreben said. “I think you have to use your discretion a little bit and get the county’s input into whether or not you just work with Middletown directly, or, try to be courteous to the Butler County Port Authority.”

Board members were concerned it might appear Russell was trying to “steal” projects from other jurisdictions. Both he and Middletown Economic Development Program Manager Matt Eisenbraun said the idea came up when they were working on projects underway on the Warren County side of Middletown near Atrium Medical Center.

Hamet said it is still very early in this process, and perhaps, they can work with both port authorities as they try to find creative ways to develop ideas and fund improvements at Hook Field.

Mike Campbell, who is the executive director of the Butler County Port Authority, was not aware of the communications between Warren County and Middletown, but fully expected to hear from Russell soon.

He said the Butler County Port Authority has so many projects going on right now, he’s not sure they can take a major role in what looks to be a pretty big venture.

“Based on where our volume is and our capability and everything, you don’t even know if you’ve got the where-with-all necessarily to do everything…,” Campbell said of a potential partnership among the three entities. “I’m pretty confident at some point we’ll talk about it. We’ll see what our participation would be.”