Travel Safety Update - Europe.
New York, Geneva (AirGuide - Travel Safety Update Europe) Jun 27, 2010
U.S., EU commit to cooperation on ATC upgrade. The European Commission hailed "a major achievement" on Friday after the U.S. and Europe signed a memorandum of cooperation on modernizing their air traffic control systems. "Harmonization is the key to the future of air travel over the North Atlantic," said the FAA's Hank Krakowski. "This agreement allows us to work together to give the airlines a seamless transition between our airspaces." Jun 21, 2010
Airbus Airbus plans to provide a modification for the overhead bin door latches on its A320 family aircraft, after some operators reported problems with the latches. But the European airframer - which has been working with the overhead bin supplier to investigate the reason for the latch issues - says it believes the main root cause is the frequent overloading of overhead bins, beyond the aircraft specification. A latch modification will be tested for a three-to-four month period beginning at the end of July. In parallel an overhead bin structural modification will be tested at the supplier, says Airbus. Jun 25, 2010
Boeing, Alenia Aeronautica Boeing has begun horizontal stabiliser inspections on two of its 787 flight test aircraft after it disclosed workmanship errors by supplier Alenia Aeronautica that could reduce the fatigue life of the parts. ZA002 and ZA003, both Rolls-Royce powered 787 flight test aircraft will be inspected today at Boeing Field in Seattle and Pinal Airpark in Marana, Arizona, respectively. Neither aircraft will return to flight operations until the one to two-day inspections are complete, says Boeing. Twenty-three of twenty-five horizontal stabilisers already shipped from Italy are installed on 787s, five of which are flying on flight test aircraft. ZA001, ZA004 and ZA005 are all currently in maintenance and instrumentation installation layup. Jun 25, 2010
British Airways, Boeing South Africa's Civil Aviation Authority has praised the airmanship of British Airways Boeing 747-400 pilots who battled to prevent a low-altitude stall after the leading-edge slats unexpectedly retracted during lift-off from Johannesburg. At 167kt on the take-off roll, fractionally below rotation speed, all the leading-edge slats inboard of the engines on each side automatically retracted, after receiving a spurious indication of thrust-reverser activation. As the aircraft tried to climb out from Tambo International Airport, known for its 'hot and high' environment, the jet lost a "significant amount of lift", says the CAA, and the stick-shaker immediately engaged, warning of an approaching stall. Instead of following the typical climb profile, the first officer - whose aerobatic experience meant he was familiar with buffet - controlled the aircraft through the stall warning and buffeting by executing a shallower climb, while the commander supported the manoeuvre by calling out heights above ground. The slats stayed retracted for a total of 23s. They started to redeploy 7s after the jet became airborne - as the undercarriage was retracting, at a height of 56ft - and were fully extended 9s later. The stick-shaker, which had activated intermittently over a 15s interval, stopped as the airspeed rose to 186kt. In its inquiry report into the 11 May 2009 incident, the CAA says the crew had "no notion" that the slats had retracted before rotation. There is no separate indication in the cockpit for leading-edge slat position. Jun 26, 2010
PowerJet Franco-Russian joint venture PowerJet has formally been awarded European type certification for its SaM146 engine. The European Aviation Safety Agency handed over design organisation approval, followed by a type certificate for the powerplant, during a ceremony in Cologne today. PowerJet developed the SaM146, which has a thrust rating of 76.8kN, for the twin-engined Sukhoi Superjet 100. During the ceremony EASA executive director Patrick Goudou said the application had been submitted the day after EASA formally came into being in September 2003. Jun 23, 2010
Rossiya Airlines Rossiya Airlines successfully passed its second IATA Operational Safety Audit. Jun 21, 2010
Virgin Atlantic In the wake of a four-hour stranding, passengers were hospitalized after being stuck inside a Virgin Atlantic aircraft in temperatures above 100 degrees. Flyersrights.org, America's foremost airline passenger advocacy group, today called up the US Department of Transportation (DOT) for additional measures to protect passengers. The group urged DOT to include international flights operating in the US under the newly-promulgated 3-Hour Rule, which would allow stranded passengers to deplane after 3 hours on the tarmac. They also called upon DOT to ensure that international flights keep air conditioning on during strandings, as domestic flights are now required to do. "Given the horrific, inhumane, and dangerous situation that took place on the Virgin Atlantic Flight last night, DOT must step in immediately to include international flights in the 3-Hour and Air Conditioning Rules," said Kate Hanni, executive director of FlyersRights.org. "Numerous passengers were hospitalized after being exposed for over four hours to temperatures well over 100 degrees - we are fortunate there were no fatalities." According to news reports and accounts by passengers aboard the flight who have contacted FlyersRights.org, hundreds of Newark-bound passengers were stuck for four hours on the tarmac in extreme temperatures, with no air conditioning, after weather diverted their flight from London to Connecticut. Jun 23, 2010
Virgin Atlantic Virgin Atlantic Airways Flight VS001's 300 passengers sat stranded on the tarmac for almost 5 hr. Tuesday night at Bradley International in Hartford, Conn., to which the London-Newark flight was diverted owing to bad weather. The aircraft landed at BDL at 8:20 p.m. and did not deplane until around 1 a.m. Passengers allegedly were without food, water or air conditioning for much of the time, according to multiple media reports. The Associated Press reported that at least three people were taken away by ambulance. Passengers were bused to Newark yesterday morning. Jun 23, 2010
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