Travel Safety Alert - North America.
AEA calls for urgent action on Single European Sky The Assn. of European Airlines (AEA) has renewed its call for the continent's states to implement the Single European Sky (SES) system to improve air traffic control. Europe currently has a patchwork of air navigation service providers, resulting in inefficiencies in routing aircraft. The European Union (EU) has talked about implementing SES for many years but individual countries have dragged their feet, airlines have complained. "We welcome the [European] CommissionOs efforts to push through the SES, but we are furious that the largest EU member states are simply not delivering," Lufthansa CEO Christoph Franz said Thursday at the AEA PresidentsO Assembly in Brussels. The AEA represents 34 of the continent's carriers. "This fragmentation is ridiculous and unacceptable," Franz said. "The Commission must stand firm, rejecting every national performance plan that falls short of the EU-wide target." Implementing SES and more direct routings would save European carriers some 10%-15% on their fuel bills, Franz said at a press conference. The AEA estimates this would save 16 million tonnes of CO2 emissions and some U3.7 billion ($4.68 billion) annually. Last month, EuropeOs SESAR (Single European Sky ATM Research) Joint Undertaking began a study to integrate Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) into non-segregated airspace in a SESAR air traffic management scenario. May 24, 2012
Investigators uncover lax supervision at N.Y. control tower Investigators found lax supervision at an air traffic control tower in Ronkonkoma, N.Y., after a whistle-blower reported safety violations. "The advice from the seasoned front-line managers was: You keep your head in the sand," said Evan Seeley, a former manager at the control tower. Controllers would watch movies on their laptops or take naps during slow periods after midnight. May 21, 2012
Operation Lifesaver educates children on rail safety in Topeka, Kan. Kansas Operation Lifesaver taught children in Topeka, Kan., about the importance of staying safe along rail crossings by displaying a train-damaged passenger vehicle and explaining how to avoid such incidents. Events such as these that put wrecked cars on display are an effective method of spreading Operation Lifesaver's message, according to Darlene Osterhaus, executive director of Operation Lifesaver for Kansas. "It's like a (crowd) magnet," she said. May 21, 2012
U.S. DOT pushes back GDS rules proposal to Nov. 30 The Department of Transportation has announced another postponement of an already-delayed set of proposed rules, pushing the issue date back to Nov. 30. The original date was Jan. 6. The proposed rules include a provision that could mandate the display of airline ancillary fees through GDS. "The U.S. Department of Transportation is committed to protecting the rights of consumers when they travel by air, and we intend to issue our new proposed airline consumer rule late fall of this year. Because there are complex issues being addressed in this rulemaking, additional time is needed for this analysis," a spokesman for the DOT said. May 21, 2012 1544-3760
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