September 11, 2011
Russian aviation regulator Rostransnadzor has suspended the operations of several Yakovlev 42 aircraft following the fatal accident involving such an aircraft on September 7 near Yaroslavl, Russia.
Rostransnadzor reported that by September 9, six Yak-42 aircraft had been checked. These checks resulted on the grounding of three planes, operated by Grozny Avia, Gazpromavia, and KrasAvia.
On September 10, inspectors grounded a Yak Service Yak-42D, RA-42412 at Izmir, Turkey because one of the engines had been in use beyond the time limits set for the engine. On the same dat an Izhavia Yak-42 was grounded at Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport due to unspecified safety violations.
September 10, 2011
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is proposing a $590,000 civil penalty against Alaska Airlines, Inc., of Seattle, Wash., for allegedly operating a Boeing 737-400 on 2,107 flights when it was not in compliance with Federal Aviation Regulations.
On Jan. 18, 2010, a flight deck ceiling fire occurred in a Boeing 737-400 while it was parked at the gate at Anchorage International Airport. Investigators determined the fire was caused by chafed wiring that had resulted from improper installation of a hose clamp. Alaska had most recently performed maintenance in the burned area in August 2008.
The B737-400 maintenance manual includes an explicit warning about proper installation of the hose clamp. Alaska subsequently discovered the same problem existed on nine other B737-400s in its fleet and made corrections. There were no other fires.
Alaska Airlines has 30 days from the receipt of the FAA’s enforcement letter to respond to the agency.
August 29, 2011
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is proposing a $269,000 civil penalty against The Parachute Center, of Acampo, Calif., for allegedly operating a de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter on 41 flights when it was not in compliance with federal aviation regulations.
The FAA alleges that The Parachute Center failed to comply with a 2009 Airworthiness Directive requiring repetitive inspections of the left and right front spar adapter assemblies to identify cracks that might threaten the structural integrity of the airplane. According to the FAA, the company operated the aircraft between November 2 and November 15, 2009, when it was out of compliance with the airworthiness directive.
The Parachute Center has 30 days from the receipt of the FAA’s enforcement letter to respond to the Agency.
The operator had also been involved in a proposed fine of $664,000 in October 2010.
August 29, 2011
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is proposing a $298,500 civil penalty against Capital Cargo International Airlines, Inc. (CCIA) of Orlando, Fla., for allegedly operating eight Boeing 727 aircraft when the aircraft were not in compliance with federal aviation regulations.
Specifically, the FAA alleges that CCIA permitted an unqualified mechanic to perform certain aircraft inspections and to sign airworthiness releases on the company’s aircraft. The FAA said the certificated mechanic in question had not completed a required general familiarization course for the B-727 and did not have prior training or experience equivalent to that course. The FAA also said the mechanic had not taken the required examination and the company had not evaluated his prior experience and training to perform required inspections on the B-727. As a result, he was not qualified to work on the B-727.
As a consequence, CCIA operated the aircraft on 46 flights in 2008 and 2009 while they were not in compliance with federal aviation regulations.
The FAA also alleges that the same mechanic performed required inspections on one B-727 on March 13, 17 and 19, 2009, when he was not qualified to do so. As a result, the company operated that aircraft on 463 revenue flights when it was not in compliance.
CCIA has 30 days from the receipt of the FAA’s enforcement letter to respond to the Agency.
August 26, 2011
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is proposing a civil penalty of $262,000 against Ameriflight, LLC, of Burbank, Calif., for allegedly violating Department of Transportation Workplace Drug and Alcohol Testing programs and provisions of the company’s FAA-approved Antidrug and Alcohol Misuse Prevention Program.
The FAA alleges Ameriflight conducted the Department of Transportation’s required pre-employment drug tests, but did not wait to receive verified negative drug test results before hiring 14 people to perform safety-sensitive flight crew or maintenance duties. Ameriflight allegedly used the individuals to perform the safety-sensitive duties, again before receiving verified negative drug test results. The alleged violations of federal regulations occurred between March 2009 and March 2010.
The FAA also alleges Ameriflight failed to administer periodic alcohol tests to 11 randomly-selected individuals, as required by Department of Transportation regulations and Ameriflight’s random testing program.
Ameriflight has 30 days from the receipt of the FAA’s enforcement letter to respond to the agency.
August 19, 2011
Russia’s transport safety regulator Rostransnadzor suspended all operations of Antonov 24 aircraft of IrAero.
An Antonov 24 of IrAero was involved in an runway excursion accindent at Blagoveshchensk Airport (BQS), Russia on August 8, 2011. An inspection of the airline by Rostransnadzor revealed several safety deficiencies, prompting a suspension of all operations of AN-24 aircraft of the airline.
August 10, 2011
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is proposing $155,000 in civil penalties against American Eagle Airlines of Fort Worth, Texas for allegedly operating eight flights with incorrect weight and balance data, and for using improper maintenance procedures when repairing a jet engine and then operating the aircraft when it was not in compliance with FAA regulations.
FAA inspectors observed 12 American Eagle flights arriving at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Dec. 28-29, 2010. In eight instances, loading documents for checked luggage did not match observations made by the inspector.
American Eagle’s FAA-approved weight and balance program calls for the use of an automated Electronic Weight and Balance System (EWBS) to make sure aircraft are operated with correct weight and balance information. However, accurate data must be entered for the EWBS to function properly.
Operators may not exceed an aircraft’s weight limit when loading the plane and the weight must be distributed so that the aircraft remains in balance during the flight. The FAA alleges American Eagle entered inaccurate data in the EWBS, then operated the aircraft with incorrect weight and balance information. The proposed civil penalty is $80,000.
The FAA also alleges American Eagle used improper procedures to repair an engine on one of its Embraer 135 regional jets, and that a mechanic signed off as “complete” on work he had not performed. As a result, American Eagle operated the aircraft on 34 flights between Sept.11 and Sept. 17, 2010, when it was not in compliance with regulations. The proposed civil penalty is $75,000.
American Eagle has 30 days from the receipt of the FAA’s enforcement letters to respond to the agency.
August 3, 2011
The Delhi Police in India is investigating 15 cases in which pilots are suspected to have forged flying records or forged examination mark sheets to obtain flying licences.
Following an incident in January 2011, investigators found irregularities in the way the licence of one of the pilots was obtained. The Indian Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) then conducted a check of the examination history of 1,704 candidates who were holding ATPL and 6,331 CPL-candidates.
Nine Commercial Pilot Licences (CPL) and six Airlines Transport Pilot Licences (ATPL) were found to be obtained by submitting fake marksheets. In all 15 cases, the licences were suspended and cases were handed over to Delhi Police authorities. The Delhi Police arrested 11 pilots, five middlemen and three DGCA officials for their involvement.
July 15, 2011
Two airlines involved in recent fatal accidents were grounded by authorities.
Media in D.R.Congo reported that the Congolese government has suspended, Wednesday, July 13, the air operating license (AOC) of Hewa Bora Airways, pending the outcome of the investigation launched into the crash of a Boeing 727 on July 8 at Kisangani. A spokesman for the Ministry of Transport said that the decision to withdraw the operating license was taken due to recurring accidents involving this airline.
In a similar move, Russia’s Federal Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsia) suspended the AOC of Rusair following a plane crash on June 21 that killed 47 people. A Tupolev 134 of the airline crashed near Petrozavodsk Airport in Russia. A spokesman reported to RIA-Novosti: ”Due to violations revealed during an investigation, the operator’s license has been suspended.”
July 11, 2011
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has revoked the operating certificate of Bimini Island Air (BIA) of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., an on-demand operator. The FAA issued the emergency order of revocation on June 27 and it took effect immediately.
The FAA alleged BIA advertised and operated 15 scheduled flights between Fort Lauderdale and the Bahamas in March and April, 2011, using a 30-seat Saab 340-A twin-turboprop aircraft. BIA is not authorized to use a 30-seat aircraft for scheduled flights.
The FAA also alleged BIA offered and advertised scheduled flights on the 30-seat plane, including the departure location and time and arrival location. The FAA said BIA operated as a scheduled airline rather than as an on-demand service when it provided those flights.
Scheduled airlines are governed by rules different than those for charter operators or on-demand services.
Bimini Island Air petitioned for review of the emergency nature of the order of revocation, June 30, which also serves as an appeal of the merits of the order. Both the petition and the appeal will be heard by the National Transportation Safety Board. BIA surrendered its operating certificate to the FAA July 1.