Tuesday, December 22, 2015

It’s been a bad couple of weeks for aviation safety in India

Last Thursday, an Air India employee died after being sucked into an engine on one of the carrier’s jets. On Sunday, an Air India plane made an emergency landing after the cockpit windscreen cracked. Then, on Tuesday, a bus collided with an Air India plane parked on the tarmac at the Kolkata airport.

The bus, ferrying a flight crew for another Indian carrier, Jet Airways, ran into an Air India ATR 42 and became jammed under one of its wings. No one was aboard the plane at the time, but one of its engines was damaged in the crash, an Air India spokesman said. Jet said no one on the bus was injured.

Questions about the ability of India’s civil-aviation regulators led the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration in January 2014 to downgrade India’s aviation-safety ranking and bar it from adding any flights to the U.S. In April, the rating was raised again.

Tuesday’s accident happened at about 5.30 a.m., according to the spokesman for Air India. The aircraft was scheduled to travel to Silchar, a city in the northeastern state of Assam, and neighboring Shillong, the capital city of the state of Meghalaya. The flights were cancelled on Tuesday.

Air India said that police in Kolkata and India’s civil aviation regulator were probing the incident. A government inquiry is also underway into the death of the member of Air India’s groundcrew, who was pulled into a jet engine as an Airbus A319 was pushing back from its gate at Mumbai’s airport.

Source:  http://blogs.wsj.com

Costly crash: Air India plane extensively damaged after Jet Airways bus rams into it

KOLKATA: An aircraft of Air India's subsidiary Alliance Air on Tuesday suffered "extensive" damage after a Jet Airways tarmac bus ferrying its crew rammed into the vacant stationary plane at the international airport in Kolkata. 

No injuries have been reported in the incident which occurred at around 5.25am. Alliance Air's flights to Silchar and Shillong were cancelled as the plane was grounded. 

While Air India said the incident was a "gross act of negligence", Jet Airways said that the coach accidentally collided with the stationary aircraft. 

According to officials at the NSCB international airport, the plane was parked at bay 32 and was preparing to leave for Silchar when the driver of the Jet Airways bus lost control of the vehicle and hit the aircraft. 

"The aircraft sustained extensive damage on the right engine, right landing gear and also some other parts because of which the flight operations to Silchar and Shillong had to be cancelled. 

"AAI (Airports Authority of India), Police, CISF (Central Industrial Security Force) and other authorities have taken serious note of this gross act of negligence and are investigating the incident," Air India said in a statement. 

In a separate statement, Jet Airways said "no one was injured in the collision" and it has started investigation into the incident. 

"A coach transporting Jet Airways cabin crew at the Kolkata airport accidentally collided with a stationary aircraft of another airline," it added. 

Air India said it was a clear fogless morning when the Jet Airways tarmac bus intruded into the slot marked at bay 32 and hit the aircraft VT-ABO (ATR 42).

Source:  http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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