AVweb flash

Airbus To Expand Beluga Fleet »

Airbus will build five new Beluga transport aircraft, the company announced this week. Only five of the large-transport airplanes exist, all of them operated by Airbus to transport large aircraft components between production sites in Europe. The original fleet was based on the A300, but the new airplane will be based on the A330 widebody, with "a large re-use of existing components and equipment," Airbus said. The first of the five new Belugas will enter service in mid-2019. More

Plane Crashes Into House Near Midway »

An Aero Commander 500 crashed into a house about a quarter-mile from Midway International Airport in Chicago at 2:42 this morning, coming within eight inches of an elderly couple asleep in bed, who were unhurt, according to local news media reports. The pilot did not survive. The airplane was carrying cargo and had departed from Midway about 2:30 a.m. More

NTSB Upholds FAA Drone Authority »

The FAA does have the authority to apply its rule prohibiting careless and reckless flight to the operators of unmanned aircraft, the NTSB said on Tuesday. The safety board offered the opinion in its review of the case of Raphael Pirker, who was fined $10,000 by the FAA for allegedly operating an unmanned aircraft in a "careless or reckless manner" in 2011. More

Zulu Flight Training Launches In Europe »

The first Zulu Flight Training office in Europe is now up and running in Geneva, Switzerland, Continental Motors Group announced this week. Like the original site for the project, in Spanish Fort, Alabama, the new office offers a simulator-based curriculum based in a convenient, urban location. The goal is to retain students who might otherwise abandon their training due to busy schedules and lack of proximity to the airfield. More

Short Final »

I was on my way back to Chicago Midway after delivering some freight out east. "It was a dark and stormy night" with scattered thunderstorms and few airplanes. I was with Cleveland approach when this call came through. ... Something Something Yankee: "Cleveland, this is Something Something Yankee. How do you hear?" ... Cleveland: "Loud and clear. How me?" ... Something Something Yankee: "Loud and clear, sir." ... After a bit of time, this communication was repeated. There seemed to be no other traffic in the area, and certainly radio chatter was absent. ... After Something Something Yankee had made his fourth request, this came over the frequency from an unknown transmitter: "Something Something Yankee, too loud and too often." ... There was quiet at that point. -- Linda D. Pendleton More