Incident: Jazz CRJ2 near Montreal on Nov 15th 2018, engine shut down in flight
A Jazz Canadair CRJ-200, registration C-GJZZ performing flight QK-8033 from Philadelphia,PA (USA) to Montreal,QC (Canada) with 41 passengers and 3 crew, was enroute at FL290 when the observed fluctuating oil pressure for the right hand engine (CF34). Descending through 15,000 feet towards Montreal the oil pressure warning activated for the right hand engine prompting the crew to shut the engine down. The aircraft continued for a safe landing in Montreal.
The Canadian TSB reported maintenance did not find an O-Ring behind the #2 starter seal. A new O-ring was installed, the oil replenished, engine runs with no leak were performed and the aircraft was returned to service.
The aircraft experienced a deployment of the Cirrus Airframe Parachute System (CAPS) over Dunn County, and came to rest on harvested cornfield terrain in northwest Sand Creek, Wisconsin. The airplane sustained unreported damage and the sole pilot onboard was not injured.
Belfast International Airport (BFS/EGAA), Aldergrove, Belfast – United Kingdom
International Scheduled Passenger
Belfast International Airport (BFS/EGAA)
Corfu International Airport (CFU/LGKR)
Thomson Airways flight BY1526, a Boeing 737-800, damaged a runway approach light following a long takeoff from Belfast International Airport.
The aircraft was operated by a Canadian airline, Sunwing Airlines, on behalf of Thomson Airways on a flight from Belfast International Airport to Corfu, Greece.
At some point during the cockpit preparation, a figure of -47°C was entered into the Flight Management Computer (FMC) as the outside air temperature (OAT). The FMC uses the OAT when calculating the value of N1 which will produce the engine’s rated thrust.
At a lower OAT, the engine will require a lower value of N1 to achieve this rated thrust. Therefore, entering an incorrect and abnormally low OAT, causes the FMC to calculate a value of N1
(and therefore thrust) significantly below that required to produce rated thrust in the actual conditions. Neither pilot noticed the error. Having completed the performance calculations, the crew reduced the takeoff thrust further by entering into the FMC a correctly-calculated assumed temperature thrust reduction of 47°C.
At 14:12 hrs the aircraft began to push back off the parking stand for its departure. During the pushback, the ground crew noticed that one of the nose landing gear tyres had a patch of worn rubber which they brought to the attention of the pilots. An engineer was called to look at the tyre and concluded that it needed changing. As a result, the aircraft returned to the parking stand and the engines were shut down. The engineers changed both the nose landing gear tyres, as is standard practice, and the aircraft was again ready to depart at 15:21 hrs. During this period the co-pilot updated the weather information from the ATIS and noted that the OAT had increased by 1°C. He recalculated the takeoff performance, which the commander checked before entering the new details in the FMC. He used 48°C to replace the previously-entered value for the assumed temperature thrust reduction but used an incorrect value of -52°C to replace the previously-entered (and incorrect) value for the OAT. The FMC used this information to calculate a thrust setting for takeoff of 81.5% N1. The aircraft pushed back from its parking stand at 15:21 hrs, and the flight crew started both engines before taxiing for departure from runway 07.
At 15:39 hrs, C-FWGH was cleared for takeoff on runway 07 from taxiway D, which gave a Takeoff Run Available (TORA) of 2,654 m. During the takeoff, at a speed of around 120 to 130 kt, the crew realised that the aircraft was not accelerating normally. They estimated, during post flight interviews, that they reached V1 with around 900 m of the runway remaining and rotated shortly afterwards. The aircraft, which was seen by multiple witnesses, took a significant time to lift off before climbing at a very low rate. After the aircraft lifted off from the runway, one of the aircraft tyres struck a runway light, which was 36 cm tall and 29 m beyond the end of the TORA. After takeoff, the crew checked the aircraft’s FMC which showed that an N1 of 81.5% had been used for the takeoff. This figure was significantly below the required N1 setting of 92.7%.
It appeared that the FMC software version fitted to C-FWGH, U10.8A, predated revision U12.0, which features a crosscheck between the OAT entered by the crew and that sensed by the external temperature sensor.
The investigation found the following causal factors for this serious incident:
1. An incorrect OAT was entered into the FMC, which caused the FMC to calculate an N1 setting for takeoff which was significantly below that required for the aircraft weight and environmental conditions.
2. The incorrect OAT was not identified subsequently by the operating crew.
3. The abnormal acceleration during the takeoff run was not identified until the aircraft was rapidly approaching the end of the runway, and no action was taken to either reject the takeoff or increase engine thrust.
The investigation found the following contributory factors for this serious incident:
1. The aircraft’s FMC did not have the capability to alert the flight crew to the fact that they had entered the incorrect OAT into the FMC, although this capability existed in a later FMC software standard available at the time.
2. The Electronic Flight Bags (EFB) did not display N1 on their performance application (some applications do), which meant that the crew could not verify the FMC-calculated N1 against an independently-calculated value.
3. The crew were unlikely to detect the abnormally low acceleration because of normal limitations in human performance.
‘Spend the Minimum’: After Crash, Lion Air’s Safety Record Is Back in Spotlight
The notorious safety record of Lion Air, Indonesia’s largest carrier, has returned to the spotlight after the crash last month of Flight 610 with 189 people on board.
JAKARTA, Indonesia – The government safety inspector had spent all night at the Makassar airport, in eastern Indonesia, several years ago, poring over a Lion Air jet that had suffered a hydraulic failure. Telling airline employees that the plane was to be grounded until the problem was fixed, the inspector went back to a hotel for a quick shower.
When the inspector returned, the plane was on the runway, about to take off.
Furious, the inspector demanded that the passengers disembark. But a supervisor with Lion Air explained how the airline had gone over the inspector’s head: Federal transportation officials in Jakarta, the Indonesian capital, had given permission for takeoff, the inspector said. The plane was in the air minutes later.
The notorious safety record of Lion Air, Indonesia’s largest carrier and one of the world’s fastest-growing airlines, is back in the spotlight after the crash of Flight 610, which hurtled nose-first into Indonesian waters with 189 people on board just minutes after takeoff on Oct. 29.
Investigators are trying to figure out what deadly alchemy of factors caused a new Boeing jet to plunge into the water at more than 400 miles per hour.
They are examining whether Boeing failed to adequately explain modifications to the plane, a new 737 Max 8 model; how Lion Air handled repeated failures with the plane’s data readings for days before the crash; and how pilot training or confusion may have come into play in a case where only seconds may have been available to save the plane and its occupants.
But even as the mystery of Flight 610 is still being pieced together, one thing is clear, investigators and aviation experts say: Few airlines were less prepared to deal with crisis than Lion Air.
Interviews with dozens of Lion Air’s management personnel and flight and ground crew members, as well as Indonesian investigators and airline analysts, paint a picture of a carrier so obsessed with growth that it has failed to build a proper safety culture.
As Lion Air Group, which owns several carriers including Lion Air, expands aggressively both at home and abroad, new questions are being raised about the company’s stunning rise. Lion ranks as one of Indonesia’s highest-profile companies, but it remains shadowed by accounts of opacity and incompetence from former employees and industry regulators.
Even as Lion Air Group signed the two biggest aircraft deals in aviation history in recent years, its flagship carrier has suffered at least 15 major safety lapses, including a crash that killed 25 people, and hundreds more episodes that have escaped the public eye, aviation experts said.
A wheel from Lion Air Flight 610 recovered from Indonesian waters. Interviews with Lion Air employees paint a picture of a carrier obsessed with growth over safety.
Government safety investigators say that the company’s political ties have allowed it to circumvent their recommendations, as in the episode in Makassar, and to play down instances that would cause alarm elsewhere.
Lion Air became adept at passing malfunctioning equipment from plane to plane rather than fixing problems, former employees said.
Lion Air did not respond to repeated requests for comment regarding specific instances in which former employees and government investigators said the company had breached safety standards.
Frank Caron, who was brought in as Lion Air’s safety manager from 2009 to 2011 on orders from insurance firms, said that the carrier had an average of one major engineering issue every three days, even though most of its fleet was new.
“Buying all the latest-generation, state-of-the-art engineering will be in vain if you don’t have systems in place that prioritize safety,” he said.
Mr. Caron said that in his first month at Lion, insurance companies were shown logbooks that drastically understated the number of hours pilots worked.
“What I saw was a company, from the top down, that made saving money a motto – so spend the minimum on pilot training, salaries, management, everything,” Mr. Caron said.
Edward Sirait, Lion Air Group’s president director, denied that the company cut corners or dissembled in logbooks. In an interview in his sparsely furnished office, he said the company had twin priorities: growth and safety.
“When we expand, we think about all the markets we have to get,” he said. “But we always develop in accordance with our fleet, human resources, crew and also the maintenance facilities.”
Rusdi Kirana, center left, the founder of Lion Air; Ray Conner, then senior vice president of Boeing; and President Barack Obama during a signing ceremony in 2011 for a $22 billion order for Boeing planes.
Mr. Sirait added that Lion Air pilots were “professional” and would not keep dual logbooks. “If he was caught, his license would get revoked,” he said.
Lion Air, Indonesia’s first low-cost private airline, was founded in 1999 by Rusdi Kirana, a former typewriter salesman and pastry chef whose sole experience with the aviation industry was running a travel agency.
Today, Lion Air Group is Southeast Asia’s largest carrier in terms of fleet size, according to the Center for Asia Pacific Aviation, a consultancy, and the airline has 458 planes on order.
To cater to some of its 30,000-strong work force, the company built its own suburb on the outskirts of Jakarta, called Lion City.
Yet from the start, the airline was shrouded in secrecy. Lion Air Group released few financial details. It paid for all of those jets by borrowing heavily from foreign banks and aircraft leasing companies.
Lion collected so many creditors that some banks were leery, even before the crash of Flight 610.
“A lot of the banks have full exposure or overexposure on them and are reluctant to lend more,” said David Yu, the managing director of Inception Aviation Holdings, a European aircraft leasing and investment company.
Back at home, the company tended to its political connections.
By 2014, Mr. Kirana had ascended to the deputy chairmanship of the National Awakening Party, the largest Islamic political party in the world’s biggest Muslim-majority nation. It was a curious position for an ethnic Chinese Christian businessman.
Mr. Kirana, who declined to be interviewed, has served as an economic adviser to President Joko Widodo of Indonesia. Last year, Mr. Kirana successfully lobbied to become the Indonesian ambassador to neighboring Malaysia, where Lion Air Group is stepping up its competition with AirAsia, the region’s other big low-cost carrier.
Indonesia’s fortunate geography between India and China shaped Lion’s ambitions, Mr. Sirait said.
“We look at the radius between China and South Asia, and it will keep growing with extraordinary economic growth,” he said. “That is our dream. That’s why we bought the aircraft.”
A Lion Air flight landed in the ocean in 2013 after missing a runway in Bali.
For airplane manufacturers like Boeing and Airbus, low-cost carriers in the developing world are a boon, despite worries about lax safety standards.
“This is an example of a win-win situation where the people of the region are going to be able to benefit from an outstanding airline,” President Barack Obama said in 2011 when Lion Air Group signed a $22 billion order for Boeing planes, the largest single order in the manufacturer’s history.
Yet for all the ribbon-cutting jubilation, aviation experts worried that the company had grown too fast for its own good.
Members of its flight and maintenance crews, speaking on the condition of anonymity to avoid losing their jobs, say they were pressured to keep double logs in order to hide overwork and inattention to safety. Pilots said they resorted to using methamphetamine to survive the grueling hours.
Over the years, Lion planes have collided with a cow, a pig and, most embarrassingly, each other. Two days in a row in 2011, Lion planes skidded off the same airport runway.
In 2013, a Lion Air flight landed in the ocean rather than at the Bali airport. Official accident reports accused the 24-year-old first officer of lacking “basic principles of jet aircraft flying” and advised Lion to “ensure the pilots are properly trained.”
“There are so many bad stories about Lion, it’s hard to know where to start,” said Ruth Simatupang, a former investigator for Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee.
In the days since the crash of Lion Air Flight 610, Lion Group planes have been involved in two more episodes: one in which a plane’s wing clipped an electricity pole and another in which a jet experienced a hydraulic failure.
Yet Lion has kept on growing.
“Everything that’s bad about Indonesia, you can see in Lion,” said Alvin Lie, Indonesia’s official ombudsman and an aviation expert. “Do we want this company representing us, making us look like just another third-world disaster?”
A Lion Air pilot practiced flying a Boeing 737-900ER in a simulator this month. When learning to fly the Max 8, the new Boeing 737 model that crashed last month, Lion Air pilots only take a three-hour online-learning program.
Capt. Hasan Basri, a pilot for Lion Air, said that two years ago he checked the logbook to find that the weather radar nestled in the nose of the plane he was to fly wasn’t working.
The problem should have been fixed within 10 days. But Captain Hasan said that the carrier had a habit of simply moving the faulty radar to another plane. As the clock wound down on the next 10 days, the radar would then be switched to another plane, he said, in a dangerous game of hot potato.
Not being able to depend on the plane’s hardware caused unnecessary stress on pilots, who were already overworked, former pilots for Lion Air said. Twenty-two-hour shifts weren’t unusual.
Lion Air’s pilots are hired on two-year contracts – a questionable practice under Indonesian labor law – and must pay the company large fines if they choose to leave the company.
Even by its own admission, Lion has skimped on pilot training compared with other airlines. When pilots for Garuda, Indonesia’s national carrier, train to fly the Max 8, the same new model that crashed last month, they travel to Singapore to practice on a Max simulator. Lion Air pilots, by contrast, take a three-hour online-learning program.
“For the aviation industry, safety should be No. 1,” Captain Hasan said. “But the way the pilots and maintenance crews are treated, the overwork and the fatigue and the worries about the poor management of the airline, it creates an unsafe environment.”
For two days before its final flight, the Lion Air plane that crashed into the Java Sea registered inaccurate data readings. Each one on its own might have seemed surmountable. But as the anomalies piled up, the plane kept on flying.
“As long as the priority is getting airplanes in the sky rather than safety, then you’re going to have problems,” said Ms. Simatupang, the former government investigator.
Mr. Sirait, Lion Air Group’s president director, declined to discuss specifics of the crash of Flight 610.
Laura Lazarus became a Lion Air flight attendant at 19 years old, breezing through a month of training even though she was supposed to undergo three. She flew up to six routes a day, she said.
In 2004, Ms. Lazarus said, she was involved in her first accident, when a plane overshot the runway in the city of Palembang. Four months later, a jet landing in Surakarta again misjudged the runway and plowed into a cemetery, killing 25 people. Ms. Lazarus fractured her arm, leg and hip. A chunk of her calf was ripped out.
For years, she wrangled over compensation, but she says she is done fighting.
“I have no more tears to spill over how Lion Air treated me,” Ms. Lazarus said. “It’s best to leave all that in the past.”
JAKARTA — Indonesia will increase the number of airworthiness inspectors by 50 each year and contemplate tightening aviation safety rules, depending on the findings of an investigation into the fatal crash of a Lion Air flight in October, the country’s director general of civil aviation said.
The archipelago nation’s patchy aviation safety record is once again in the spotlight after the Lion Air crash killed all 189 people on board. The proposed move is aimed at putting to bed allegations that the country’s aviation industry is unsafe.
“Frankly, the number of inspectors is lacking because the growth of the airline [and the] aircraft industry in Indonesia is high,” Polana Pramesti told the Nikkei Asian Review. Pramesti, who was appointed director general of air transportation early this month, added that while there are currently around 2,000 aircraft registered with the transportation ministry, there are “less than 100” public airworthiness inspectors in Indonesia.
Indonesian airlines were long banned from flying to the U.S. as well as Europe due to unaddressed safety concerns. That changed in 2016, when the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration announced that Indonesia had been granted a Category 1 rating after meeting safety standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization. Indonesian airlines were removed from EU’s blacklist in June this year.
“We have a target of increasing the number of [public airworthiness] inspectors by around 50 per year,” Pramesti said, adding that an increase in “airworthiness inspectors” — those in charge of checking whether aircraft are suitable for flying safely — had been planned before the crash.
Pramesti’s office is under the Ministry of Transportation and is responsible for aviation industry oversight.
Although Pramesti did not say when the plan would be put into effect, it is likely the first time her office has come out with concrete figures for adding inspectors.
In a 2017 audit carried out by the ICAO, Indonesia scored above the global average in six of eight criteria, with an overall compliance rate of 80.84%, a rise from the previous audit result of 51.61%. According to Pramesti, this shows Indonesia is markedly improving when it comes to aviation safety.
Pramesti declined to answer when asked if she thinks a lack of public inspectors was a reason behind the Lion Air crash but maintained that the responsibility for checking an aircraft’s airworthiness also lay with the airline operators.
“The company’s internal supervision has the main task in supervision [of the aircraft], in addition to the regulator,” she said. “Regulators oversee external safety carried out by the operator or the company.”
Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee, or KNKT, is set to release its preliminary findings on the accident late next week. The findings will be used to determine whether the transportation ministry will tighten aviation safety regulations, Pramesti said.
“After the KNKT’s initial report regarding the Lion Air crash and the results of our [own] audit,” she said, “we will consider strengthening airplane regulations and supervision.”
Mochamad Mauludin, deputy director of aircraft operation at the directorate general, said other probes are also being carried out. “We are,” he said, “awaiting the results of the KNKT investigation and are conducting various kinds of audits on Lion Air to ascertain whether the cause of the accident [was due to] the management of Lion Air or at the manufacturer, Boeing.”
Sacked Thunderbirds Boss Took Formation Supersonic, Placed Hands Around Neck Of Pilot
We now know much more about why the Air Force fired the Thunderbirds commanding officer after just one season and the details aren’t pretty.
A new report by Air Force Times’ Stephen Losey adds some much-needed color to the abrupt removal of Lt. Col. Jason Heard, the commander of the USAF Flight Demonstration Team, aka The Thunderbirds, a year ago. Not only was a physical altercation with another pilot at the heart of that decision, but a pattern of risk-taking and needlessly dangerous behavior also was a factor.
Losey reports that the altercation in question occurred at an Irish pub located at National Harbor, Maryland on September 11th, 2017, a day after executing a delta formation flyover of the Redskins season opener at FedEx Field. The report, which Losey obtained via the Freedom Of Information Act, noted that multiple witnesses testified the Thunderbirds formation flew well below the minimum regulated altitude for a flyover of a populated area during that display.
Before that, Heard, who was an F-15E Weapon Systems Officer turned Strike Eagle pilot, had repeatedly decided to break the rules while his teammates were flying just feet away from his aircraft. This included taking the diamond formation supersonic during a transit flight to the Royal International Air Tattoo in the UK back in July of 2017. Heard also attempted a loop on takeoff at an airshow in Boise even though weather conditions were below the minimums allowed for the maneuver.
These types of acts, which made some pilots in the team think he was going to kill them, and a generally hostile and risk-taking management style led to tensions with those directly under his command to boil over at the Maryland bar on September 11th.
“Seven witnesses observed the altercation, the report said, and “witness testimony was consistent that Lt. Col. Heard placed his hands around [the unnamed pilot’s] neck.” Witnesses told investigators that both Heard and the other pilot had consumed alcohol that evening. One of the witnesses, who was closest to the two, intervened and broke it up, the report said.”
Ironically, Heard stated the following when he was selected to head the Thunderbirds in November of 2016:
“To me, service as a Thunderbird is both an honor and a privilege… It requires significant sacrifice rewarded by the trust our fellow airmen place in us to represent them to the public. I promise to provide adaptive leadership, maintain the standards and fly a safe show.”
Clearly, that was a hollow declaration considering what we know now.
It remains unclear what exactly happened to Heard after being pulled from the Thunderbirds roster, but based on these revelations, doing so seems now like a far more essential move than it did at the time. All we really knew then was that he had lost the trust of his team and that his focus on safety-or lack thereof-was an issue.
Trust is everything in an elite aerobatic demonstration squadron environment. The CO literally flies with the other pilots in the formation’s lives in his hands. Still, it’s not like this is the first time someone in such a demanding position hasn’t worked out. But in this case, Heard got pulled for the very worst reasons, not because the unique type of flying just wasn’t a good fit-even the best fleet pilots can have issues with the very tight and precise formation flying the demo demands-or due to external, personal circumstances. Instead, he was selectively unsafe and fostered an adversarial work environment for his teammates.
Air India pilot Arvind Kathpalia to lose airport access
Senior Air India pilot Arvind Kathpalia, stripped of his flying licence for three years and demoted after failing an alcohol test shortly before he was to command a flight from New Delhi to London on November 11, is set to lose his automatic access to airports.
The civil aviation ministry has started the process of revoking Kathpalia’s airport entry pass.(HT File Photo)
Senior Air India pilot Arvind Kathpalia, stripped of his flying licence for three years and demoted after failing an alcohol test shortly before he was to command a flight from New Delhi to London on November 11, is set to lose his automatic access to airports. The civil aviation ministry has started the process of revoking Kathpalia’s airport entry pass.
The Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), which issues the passes to airline employees and crew, has asked Air India to surrender Kathpalia’s pass, which allows him access to all airports and all areas within airports. “We have asked Air India to submit his pass as he is not a licence holder now. The pass is issued to pilots with valid commercial pilot licence. Senior members of airlines, who often have to visit the airports, are also issued a pass. But in his case, he is not member of Air India board now, so he will not be allowed to enter the airport (other than as a passenger),” said a BCAS official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
“Also, till the (time the) airline submits his pass, we have asked airports to not allow him in case he tries to enter using his airport entry pass.”
Kathpalia, who was removed from the post of director (operations) after he tested positive for alcohol content, has been demoted to executive director without any portfolio. Civil aviation minister Suresh Prabhu approved his removal. Air India has also ordered a vigilance enquiry in the matter.
An Air India spokesperson said that since Kathpalia will be without a portfolio, his entry pass will be submitted to BCAS and that he will not be required to visit airports for official purposes.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) suspended the flying licence of the 56-year-old Air India pilot for three years on November 12, a day after he was found to have an unacceptably high blood alcohol count just before he was scheduled to pilot a flight.
“The selection commission selects the director (operations) and usually the senior most pilot gets the job. Kathpalia was selected following the procedure and since he has now been removed, he automatically becomes executive director, which is a demotion. He was not sacked by the aviation ministry so he will be assigned some designation. He can come to office but will not be part of any meeting,” said an Air India official who asked not to be named.
Kathpalia was previously suspended for three months in January when he tested positive for alcohol consumption during a pre-flight breathalyser test. He had resumed duty after serving the suspension.
As per the recommendations of the International Civil Aviation Organisation, the level of blood alcohol compatible (BAC) with safe flying is ‘zero’. Kathpalia had 007% BAC.
A third violation could mean the permanent cancellation of his flying licence.
“When a senior pilot, who is also part of top management, violates rules blatantly, he should not be allowed to continue. By demoting him to ED, Air India is ensuring that he retires with all the privileges. He should not be allowed to burn taxpayers’ money and his airport entry pass should also be revoked immediately,” said captain Mohan Ranganathan, an aviation safety expert.
On January 19 last year, Kathpalia flew a Delhi-Bengaluru flight AI 174 without going through the mandatory breathalyser test. He did not even take the test after landing in Bengaluru.
EASA orders more safety checks for AW169, AW189 tail rotors
Operators of Leonardo AW169 and AW189 helicopters have been instructed by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to conduct additional inspections of their tail rotor flight control systems.
EASA has expanded an emergency airworthiness directive for AW169 and AW189 helicopters.EASA has expanded an emergency airworthiness directive for AW169 and AW189 helicopters. Leonardo Photo
In an emergency airworthiness directive (AD) issued Nov. 21, EASA calls for AW169 and AW189 operators to conduct an inspection and breakaway torque check of the tail rotor duplex bearing, and inspection and reinstallation of the tail rotor servo-actuator castellated nut, in accordance with an alert service bulletin issued by Leonardo.
These inspections are in addition to the requirements of an AD issued earlier this month, which called for AW169 and AW189 operators to check for correct installation of the tail rotor servo-actuator.
The ADs were prompted by the fatal crash of an AW169 in Leicester, England, on Oct. 27. The helicopter was departing King Power Stadium in Leicester when it spun out of control and crashed outside the stadium, killing five people, including Leicester City Football Club owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha.
Despite an intense post-crash fire, the United Kingdom’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) was able to download recordings from the aircraft’s digital flight recorder. In a special bulletin published on Nov. 14, the agency described the helicopter climbing on a rearward flight path through a height of approximately 320 feet before the climb paused.
“Heading changes consistent with the direction of pedal movements were recorded initially, then the helicopter entered an increasing right yaw contrary to the pilot’s left pedal command. The helicopter reached a radio height of approximately 430 feet before descending with a high rotation rate,” the bulletin states.
The AAIB has yet to identify a cause for the apparent loss of yaw control. According to EASA, its latest AD “is still considered to be an interim action and further AD action may follow.”
The AW189 is included in the AD because its tail rotor design is similar to that of the AW169.
The FAA has proposed some changes to its standards for obtaining an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certificate in the airplane category or for obtaining an airplane type rating, and if you have any opinions about the proposal, the FAA wants to hear from you. The proposed rule change is posted online, and comments will be accepted until Dec. 21. The proposed standards include what a pilot is expected to know, consider and do in order to prepare for the FAA ATP knowledge test and practical test and receive an ATP certificate or airplane type rating. The areas covered are preflight preparation, takeoffs and landings, inflight maneuvers, stall prevention, instrument procedures, emergency operations and post-flight procedures.
The proposal was developed by a working group of the FAA’s Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee, chaired by David Oord, AOPA senior director of regulatory affairs. The group prepared the draft, which was then approved by the full committee. The working group’s goal was to develop clear standards for aeronautical knowledge, ensuring that the required knowledge “reflects what airmen really need to know for safe operation in the National Airspace System,” said Oord. The standard improves on the prior ATP practical test standard by consolidating overlapping tasks, and by linking the “special emphasis” areas applicants and examiners are expected to focus on with specific ATP ACS Areas of Operation and Tasks, according to AOPA.
More academy cadets selected to fly as the Air Force works to close its pilot shortfall
More than 530 U.S. Air Force Academy cadets from the 2019 graduating class have been matched to attend pilot training pending final qualifications and commissioning. (Staff Sgt. Charlie Rivezzo/Air Force)
The Air Force has been dealing with a pilot shortage, but the service’s elite four-year academic institution is doing its part to pump out qualified future aviators.
More than 530 cadets from the U.S. Air Force Academy’s 2019 graduating class have been matched to attend pilot training pending final qualifications and commissioning.
That is a 26 percent increase over the 2018 graduating class.
“Airmanship is a large part of the academy experience, and a core part of our identity as a service, and we are proud as an institution to offer more flying opportunities to our cadets,” Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria, Air Force Academy superintendent, said in a press release.
The increase in graduates heading to pilot training is part of the academy’s contribution to solving the ongoing pilot shortage.
The Air Force Academy’s Operations and Analysis Directorate has been working with Air Education and Training Command to ensure the institution is producing a percentage of candidates capable of bypassing Initial Flight Training, the press release said.
Some of these cadets could even move through a shortened version of Undergraduate Pilot Training, the release added.
The academy is also planning to add flight-related courses to the sophomore and senior years to help cadets already leaning toward attending pilot training, as well as nurture that interest among others.
“The academy made the case that we could play a role in starting to solve this critical Air Force issue,” Silveria said in the release. “We will continue to work with other major commands and Air Force leaders to do our part in solving this national defense challenge.”
During their time at the academy, cadets are already exposed to academic, virtual and hands-on flight training.
Roughly 70 percent of each class participates in gliding, soaring or powered flight programs at the institution’s airfield, officials said.
A T-1 Jayhawk, T-6 Texan II, and T-38 Talon fly in formation near Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas. Dissimilar formations are typically flown for pilots finishing Undergraduate Pilot Training. (Senior Airman Moshe Paul/Air Force)
“The academy is uniquely situated to produce high quality candidates for pilot training,” Lt. Col. William Hartman, deputy commander of the academy’s airmanship training unit, said in the release.
That unique capability comes from “cadets teaching other cadets and running cadet airmanship squadrons, and the mentorship from a broad range of military pilots in multiple fields,” Hartman added.
Candidates for Air Force pilot, remotely piloted aircraft officer and combat systems officer all begin training with initial flight screening and RPA flight screening at Pueblo, Colorado. There, candidates are judged on their flight aptitude and introduced to the realities of military aviation, according to AETC.
From there, pilot candidates then attend either Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training at Sheppard AFB, Texas, or Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training at Columbus AFB, Mississippi; Laughlin AFB, Texas; or Vance AFB, Oklahoma, according to AETC.
T-38 Talons from the 87th Flying Training Squadron fly in formation over the greater Del Rio, Texas. The squadron trains both U.S. Air Force and allied nation pilots prior to moving them on to fly more advanced aircraft. (Senior Airman Keifer Bowes/Air Force)
The expedited training and renewed focus on producing pilots is expected to help put a dent in the service’s alarming 2,000-pilot shortfall.
The Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps are each short about 25 percent of the fighter pilots they need in crucial areas, according to a General Accountability Office report released in April, titled “DOD Needs to Reevaluate Fighter Pilot Workforce Requirements.”
It takes the Air Force about five years of training and costs anywhere from $3 million to $11 million before a fighter pilot can lead sorties. Retaining these airmen, so that the service can recoup its investment, is also a challenge.
The problem is compounded by commercial airliners that have been on hiring sprees over the past few years.
To address the problem, the service has increased retention bonuses and worked to eliminate non-flying duties that keep airmen out of the cockpit.
The Air Force hopes to train 1,500 new pilots each year by fiscal 2022.
Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson said at a Senate Armed Services readiness and management support subcommittee hearing in October that the service trained 1,160 new pilots in fiscal 2017, and expects to train another 1,311 in fiscal 2019.
Taylor Deen is a senior pilot with Goodyear Airship Operations.
How to fly the Goodyear Blimp
Everyone has a dream job growing up: doctor, vet, ice cream taste tester. But how do you actually get the gig? Marketplace is looking into how with the occasional series “How to be a …”
Taylor Deen: My name is Taylor Deen, I’m a senior pilot with Goodyear Airship Operations.
Matthew St. John: My name is Matthew St. John. I’m the chief pilot of Wingfoot Two. Currently we’re in Carson, California – this is the Los Angeles blimp base. The airship has been stationed out here since mid-’20s.
Deen: I guess it all started when I was 13 years old and I went on a family vacation. We went down to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. I grew up in a small town, and as I arrived there, I realized that I loved traveling, I loved the adventure, and getting back on the plane, I realized I want to be a pilot.
St. John: After I graduated from high school I went to an aerospace engineering school and I got my certifications and ratings to be a commercial pilot. I also got into sailing. I did a lot of sailing down in Florida, and it was a really good friend of mine, he’s, like, “You’re a commercial pilot and you love sailing boats. You ever thought about airships?”
Deen: Flying airplanes and flying blimps has similarities. There’s still airspace, you still have radios – things that are very similar. There’s no airship or blimps schools out there, so everybody has a different start. You can either come from the military, you can be a helicopter pilot or an airplane pilot and then transition over to airships. So when they hire you here, they train you in-house and you get all of your airship time with the company.
St. John: We do a lot of sporting events in downtown Los Angeles, with the Lakers and the Clippers and L.A. Dodgers. So when you’re down there flying around in the evening, it’s a real treat to get to see the entire city lit up like a Christmas tree at night.
Deen: As far as blimps go, we’re not trying to go from Los Angeles to London on a daily basis, we’re just trying to make it to a sporting event. And we want to be seen along the way, we’re always trying to advertise, so going slow and staying low is actually a benefit to us. It’s very much like a road trip.
St. John: You could have a job where you fly from city to city, much like a kind of a modern-day explorer, where you’re only at a thousand feet off the ground but you’re covering the United States and it just gives you a unique perspective. There are beautiful areas where you’re flying in really high terrain, like high, upper elevations. You might cross a certain area where it just drops off and the next thing you know, you have a huge canyon beneath you and you’re flying over the top of it – like the ultimate all-terrain vehicle. Those moments, it’s like something out of a movie.
Empowering young women: University founder Hiralal Shastr set up the school to educate and empower young women, a dream he had envisioned for his own daughter, who tragically fell ill at the age of 12 and passed away.
(CNN) – On a dusty, 3,600-foot-long airstrip in Rajasthan, India, a two-seater white Cessna 152 pivots into position. A few moments later, it’s soaring over the empty desert into a cloudless blue sky.
This is the private runway at 1,100-acre Banasthali Vidyapith — one of India’s premier women’s universities.
Since its establishment in 1962, the university’s School of Aviation has produced more than 5,000 alumnae, with dozens more in the pipeline.
“In a country where many people don’t want to invest in girls, which is the mentality of most traditional families, Banasthali Vidyapith creates a place where women are equally important,” Captain Tarana Saxena, a recent graduate, tells CNN Travel.
“They give girls a chance to learn about aviation … a chance to fly.”
A big step for women
Avani Chaturvedi, India In 2016, Indian Minister of Defence Manohar Parrikar congratulates the Indian Air Force’s first three female fighter pilots: Bhawana Kanth (L), Avani Chaturvedi (C) and Mohana Singh. NOAH SEELAM/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
The inspiration for Banasthali Vidyapith University sprung from tragedy.
Founder Hiralal Shastri, a politician who was born into a peasant family in Rajasthan, relocated to the village of Vanasthali in 1929 with his family.
In this rural outpost, about 50 miles south of Jaipur, he founded a social program to reconstruct the village and educate local farmers.
At a very young age, his daughter embraced his passion and began holding classes for village children.
Tragically, she fell ill at the age of 12 and passed away.
Encouraged by his wife, Shastri set out to educate and empower young women, a dream they had envisioned for their own daughter.
And so Banasthali Vidyapith opened in 1935 with seven students — all girls — and now offers more than 28 disciplines, including doctoral degrees.
“Having access to education was a big step for women in India,” says Saxena.
“The idea was not to keep girls separate from boys, but to give girls a chance to evolve — to excel in something, to learn, to evolve their minds.”
Banasthali Vidyapith aviation school, India The university introduced its Gliding & Flying Club in the 1960s. Courtesy Banasthali Vidyapith
At Banasthali Vidyapith, the curriculum is based on the concept of “Panchmukhi Shiksha,” which the university describes as the “harmonious development of personality.”
The university offers a wide range of departments, including law, design, science, nanotechnology and literature.
It introduced its Gliding & Flying Club with a fleet of five aircraft in the 1960s, when only a handful of female pilots existed in the world.
At first, the aviation training was intended to help women build confidence as part of the schools holistic program.
It evolved into a School of Aviation, where women could later pursue a student’s license, bachelor’s degree or a commercial pilot’s license.
“They give girls a chance to learn about aviation … a chance to fly.” Captain Tarana Saxena
Even for those who wish to acquire a student pilot’s license, rather than pursue aviation as a career, Banasthali provides 5-10 hours of free flying lessons.
“At a time when it was considered unreal and absurd for women to drive cars in the country, we were teaching girls how to fly,” Aditya Shastri, grandson of founder Pandit Hiralal Shastri, tells CNN Travel.
Over the years, the aviation school has since turned out many of India’s top female pilots, including Avani Chaturvedi, whom the country celebrated as its first female fighter pilot in 2016.
Chaturvedi made history again in February, when the 24-year-old became India’s first woman to fly a fighter aircraft solo.
A patch of turbulence
Banasthali Vidyapith, India Captain Tarana Saxena poses with beside a Cessna at Banasthali Vidyapith University. Tarana Saxena
Growing up in the town of Bilari, in Uttar Pradesh, Saxena has had her eyes on the sky ever since her parents gave her a toy airplane when she was about five years old.
“Even though the toy couldn’t actually fly, I remember playing with it, and wondering how these things stayed in the sky,” says Saxena.
She lived in a town where there was no airport, not many people spoke English and it was a big deal if a girl rode a bike.
“Luckily, I grew up with parents who supported me,” says Saxena. “One day my father saw an ad for the flying club in the newspaper and he applied for me, when I was still in boarding school [high school].”
But pursuing aviation isn’t easy. For starters, it’s expensive. At least 200 flight hours are required to achieve a commercial pilot’s license and each hour costs Rs10,000 ($135).
In total, the license will cost roughly 20-35 lakh Indian Rupees, or about US$28-47,000, though the university provides scholarship programs.
“Banasthali is trying to nurture more women leaders in aviation,” Professor Seema Verma, dean of the School of Aviation, tells CNN Travel.
“A lot of Indian parents don’t want to spend so much on training for their daughters. There are exceptions, of course. Some parents have dreams (for their daughters) in sync with our mission.”
Saxena says her parents — her mom, a doctor who works with unprivileged people; her father, a professor — endured an onslaught of judgment from neighbors, who questioned their investment in a girl.
“We live in a society where people judge — why are you spending so much on your daughter? Why are you letting your daughter to that? Girls can’t drive. How can they fly?”
Saxena’s parents encouraged her to ignore the noise and follow her dream.
“No one in my family was ever in the aviation industry. But my parents wanted us to be whatever we wanted to be — my sister wanted to be a doctor, she is a doctor. I wanted to be a pilot, I am a pilot.” “At a time when it was considered unreal and absurd for women to drive cars in the country, we were teaching girls how to fly.” Aditya Shastri
Living the dream
When Saxena moved to Banasthali in 2012, she couldn’t wait to take her first flight.
In December 2013, the day finally arrived. An instructor accompanied her as she settled into the cockpit of a Cessna 152A, a common training aircraft.
“I remember my instructor warned me that I might feel dizzy or a little nauseous, but I didn’t feel anything but excitement,” says Saxena.
“I couldn’t believe how amazing it felt to be in the air. I wanted five more minutes, 10 more minutes…I wanted it to last forever.”
She says flying felt exactly the way she imagined it.
“It’s rare to dream about something, then have it come true.”
She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Aviation Science followed by a commercial pilot license, which required a series of eight exams, in about five years.
After graduation, Saxena says she fielded job offers from Spicejet, Air Asia & Vistara and, this year, secured her dream job at IndiGo.
“I chose IndiGo because it has the Airbus 320, which I prefer to fly, and it has the female factor — Indigo employs the highest number of female pilots in India (with 14%). Everything at the company is based on merit.
“I do not represent a phenomena of any kind. I just hope that having more women pilots in India can change perceptions (about gender). How does gender determine one’s abilities?”
Roades to the ski
IndiGo airline, India IndiGo airline employs the highest percentage of female pilots in India. PRAKASH SINGH/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
It was unusual to see a woman in a cockpit in India when the university started its on-campus aviation school in the 1960s.
Today, roughly 5%of commercial pilots worldwide are women, according to the Centre for Aviation.
In India, 12% of the country’s pilots are women — the highest percentage in the world. That’s roughly three times the proportion in the US, where just 4% are women.
Harsh Vardhan, founder of Starair Consulting and an expert on India’s aviation industry, says the momentum started after post-independence from Britain in the 1950s.
“In the past, we come from traditional mindset, so not many women were really coming out for jobs,” says Vardhan.
“They weren’t pursuing aviation as a career — they were more housewives and preferred to work in sectors like education and in a secured environment.”
He says former prime ministers like Indira Gandhi — India’s first female prime minister — played a major role in encouraging women to come forward, as did her son, Rajiv Gandhi.
“It’s the role models that create the success stories and then others start following,” says Vardhan. “Women like Kalpana Chawla, the first female astronaut from India, are a great inspiration.”
Today, Vardhan estimates there are more than 2,600 women flying for private airlines, as navy and helicopter pilots, and in other aviation related capacities across India.
“Now women can learn in all flying institutes across the country, but Banasthali Vidyapith is one of the prime institutions that has been in the forefront of women’s education in India,” says Vardhan.
“In another five or 10 years, you are going to be looking at this ratio up to 20% or more. It will take time, but it will grow when we choose pilots based on merit.”
Company donates jet to Snead State for aviation training
ALBERTVILLE, AL (WAFF) – A multimillion dollar jet made it’s last flight on Wednesday.
It landed in Albertville.
The craft will now be a tool for learning for years to come.
Officials with Snead State’s Aviation College say the plane will give the students the ability to train like they’ve never trained before.”
Built in 1984, the Mitsubishi MU300 twin jet aircraft made it’s final landing in Albertville.
The plane was becoming unserviceable and was donated to the Snead State Aviation College for student training.
Interested people came to see the donation that would have cost around four million dollars brand new.
College officials say students will now be able to train on the plane by taking it apart and putting it back together.
Aviation College Director Dan Owen says they’ll be able to do sheet metal work, fuel systems training, hydraulics, and engine work
“We have other methods that we can utilize through training aids and other things that we do utilize which meets the FAA requirements but having a live airplane like this it’s just tremendously great for us,” said Owen.
Owen says the plane will always remain flight ready but it will never fly again.
Airbus Reveals Plans for All-New Narrow-Body, Re-Engined A350
An Airbus A350-1000. Photographer: Balint Porneczi/Bloomberg
Airbus SE is hiring staff to help develop a proposed new narrow-body jet and a revamped version of its latest A350 wide-body, both due to be powered by a new generation of engine from the middle of next decade.
The company is recruiting designers and engineers in Toulouse and Madrid to work on the short-haul model, as well as a “new engine option” or Neo version of the A350, according to job postings seen by Bloomberg.
The short-range jet would be the first entirely new narrow-body that Airbus has brought to market since the A320 was offered to airlines in 1984, and the first clean-paper model of any kind from the European planemaker since the A350 was proposed in 2006. When asked about the job notices, Airbus said the projects described aren’t guaranteed to be launched or to enter production.
“As a leading aircraft manufacturer we are looking at many ways to advance our product line,” it said. “There are many studies, but not all see the light of day.” Airbus has in the past advertised jobs on a Neo version of the A380 superjumbo — an upgrade that in 2016 was taken off the drawing board.
The latest job descriptions outline plans to develop digital replicas of production lines to test-run build rates of 100 narrow-bodies and 20 A350neos a month. The current target is 60 A320s a month by the middle of 2019, and 10 A350s by the end of this year.
Service entry for the models will be determined by developments in engine technology, with the Airbus ads specifying that both would be powered by turbines featuring ultra-high bypass ratios to reduce fuel burn.
Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc, Safran SA and Pratt & Whitney have all said they’re pursuing such designs. London-based Rolls-Royce has earmarked service entry in 2025 for its Ultrafan model, while France’s Safran is working on a demonstrator that will be ready for ground tests by 2021. Pratt, a unit of United Technologies Corp. is testing a similar upgrade of its geared turbofan.
Pratt competes with a Safran-General Electric Co. alliance to power existing A320 jets. A replacement model would provide Rolls with a chance to re-enter a narrow-body market it abandoned to focus on engines for bigger planes. Airbus, however, might not countenance three competing turbines and might want to see two groups formed.
Rolls in turn is the sole supplier of engines to the existing A350, and it’s not clear whether Airbus would be prepared to extend that exclusivity to a Neo version of the long-haul jet or want to bring in a competitor. That would give airlines more choice and help guard against the production stumbles that have afflicted some recent plane models in the industry.
Before embarking on the new aircraft, Airbus would first introduce two narrow-body upgrades, the job advertisements say.
One would be a version of the long range A321LR able to fly 700 nautical miles further with the aid of a redesigned fuel tank, dubbed the A321XLR. The other would be a stretched and improved version of the A320neo series known as the “plus” and aimed at helping Airbus compete with a planned mid-market plane that Boeing could launch as early as next year.
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This course, led by Captain Shem Malmquist, an accident investigator, professor and 777 captain who flies international routes, is now underway. A key unit in this class focuses on poorly understood high altitude weather challenges that have led to fatal accidents.
Here is a comment from one of the veteran pilots now taking this course
“I have made it to the Part 121 world with what can be described as zero weather training. I have had a lot of low level weather experience flying floats but when it comes to flight levels the only knowledge is what I’m gaining from this course. The extremely basic weather theory and concept required for our ratings is outdated and barely touched on during orals. The training at my current company barely touched on the subject except that we have weather radar onboard and good luck getting it to work. A captain will show you how it works. Is this the case industry wide?”
With other pilots mirroring this comment, it is apparent to all of us that the kind of aviation meteorology course taught by professors like Debbie Schaum at Embry-Riddle University, are not offered to most pilots. In fact, pilots moving up from domestic to international routes typically have little (one day) or no training on the special challenges presented on transoceanic routes lacking radar coverage found on overland routes. With many major airports located on oceanic coastlines, these challenges can be significant.
As Captain Malmquist prepares for the upcoming January course we would like to hear from pilots on this critical issue. A selection of these comments will be published in a future issue of Flight Safety Information. Our long-term goal is to make sure that every pilot receives the critical meteorology training they need to do their job. Here are those questions which you can answer confidentially. Your name will not be used in future reports on this subject.
1. What weather training have you received specific to high altitude flying?
2. Do you feel that this training was all you needed?
3. Where did your training take place? How long did it take.
4. Was this weather training provided when you began working for your airline?
5. Have you had recurrent training on weather challenges?
6. Were you retrained on a new radar system when you switched to flying a different aircraft type.
7. If you switched from domestic to international routes did you receive any training on special weather
conditions found on transoceanic routes?
8. What manuals and instructional materials were provided? How much information did you receive? Did it
answer all of your questions?
9. Did you receive online training? How long did it take to complete this training? Were you tested on your
10. Do you believe this training prepared you adequately for special challenges in places such as the
intertropical convergence zone?
11. Are you confident that you fully understand weather radar? Does it always do what you want? If not,
please describe the problems encountered.
12. Have you been in situations where better weather training would have been helpful?
13. Did a lack of training contribute to any difficulties?
14. Do you have any recommendations for better weather training? Do you think it should be provided in
house, in a classroom setting, online or all three?
15. Are there specific low altitude weather issues that are a concern to you?
Feel free to answer any or all of these questions privately. You are welcome to combine your answers into a narrative summary.
Please let us know if you would like more information about Captain Malmquist’s course as it relates to weather training not provided by your company. You can reach us directly at email@example.com or 231 720-0930 (EST 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.) For more details visit http://pilot-errormovie/online-course/