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The Top Headlines From AVweb's Expanded,
Illustrated News Coverage At AVweb's
REPORT: PILOTS FAILED TO DETECT FUEL LEAK...
The pilots of an Air Transat Airbus A330 that glided to a landing
in the Azores in August 2001 responded incorrectly to a fuel leak over
the Atlantic Ocean, according to the official report
on the incident, released Monday. The pilots, reacting to what they
thought was a fuel imbalance, fed fuel into the leak, and soon
succeeded in inadvertently pumping all their fuel overboard, far from
land. The report said the pilots acted from memory rather than
utilizing a checklist, so they never saw a "Caution" note in the Fuel
Imbalance checklist that might have caused them to consider that the
real problem was not an imbalance but a fuel leak. More...
THEY SAVED THE AIRPLANE...
However, the report also found that there was not a "clear,
unambiguous indication or warning that a critical fuel leak existed,"
and the pilots had never experienced such a situation during
operations or training. The investigators also said that Capt. Robert Piché's skill in conducting the
subsequent engines-out dead-stick landing saved the lives of the 306
passengers and crew on board. The glide began at about 18,000 feet,
lasted 19 minutes, and traversed 65 nm. Air Transat CEO Allen Graham
said, "Since the occurrence we have reviewed our training programs and
enhanced our processes, in terms of both maintenance and flight
operations. ... This event is unique in our history."
SAYS: NEGLIGENCE; UNION SAYS: COMPETENCE
Lawyer Glenn Grenier, of the Toronto law firm Goodman and
Carr, has filed a $30 million class-action lawsuit against Air
Transat, Rolls-Royce and Airbus on behalf of 193 of the passengers.
"Up to the point in time when the engines flamed out, the pilots were
in error and they were negligent in the operation of the aircraft," he
said after the report was released, The Canadian Press reported on
Tuesday. The Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), the union
representing the pilots, saw things differently: "The report ...
underscores the competence and professionalism exhibited by the two
pilots in overcoming a host of misinformation and safely landing the
aircraft and safeguarding the passengers under exceptional
circumstances," ALPA said in a news release. More...
The FAA recently posted its revised "Flight Plan," an effort to direct its goals and
priorities for the next year, and asked for input. It got a
substantial critique from the folks at AOPA, who said the plan
doesn't pay enough attention to general aviation. AOPA said the FAA
needs to focus on improving GA airports and adding more instrument
approaches. The FAA should stand up for GA when security agencies
restrict airspace access, AOPA said. The FAA also could do a better
job of providing advance notice of airspace restrictions. "I realize
this may require reform of the system used to disseminate critical
information, the Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) system," AOPA President Phil
Boyer said. More...
AOPA EXPO OPENS ... AND AVWEB IS THERE
AOPA's annual three-day convention and trade show opens today in Long
Beach, Calif. FAA Administrator Marion Blakey will address the first
general session via live video from D.C., and astronaut Mike Melvill
is today's live luncheon speaker. Tomorrow, Adm. David Stone, head of
the Transportation Security Administration, will talk about GA
security, and Saturday features an open forum with AOPA leaders. The
Long Beach Convention Center hosts 500 exhibitors and a series of
educational forums, and 70 aircraft are on static display at Long
Beach Airport. AVweb staffers are already on site, so watch for
their live coverage in Monday's AVflash and NewsWire.
LOOK TO THE PIEDMONT HAWTHORNE AIRCRAFT SALES TEAM WHEN
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SETTLES "REVERSE-DISCRIMINATION" LAWSUIT
The FAA has settled a lawsuit in which a white male worker at the
agency's William J. Hughes Technical Center, in Atlantic City, N.J.,
alleged that he was repeatedly passed over for promotion during his
28-year career while the positions he applied for were given to
less-qualified minority and female applicants. Michael Ryan will be
given a promotion with back pay, and the FAA has agreed to review its
hiring and promotion policies, according to Hanan Isaacs, Ryan's
lawyer. FAA spokesman Greg Martin told AVweb yesterday, "With
the assistance of the court, we reached a settlement we believe is
fair to both parties and upholds the FAA's ongoing commitment to
ensure a workplace free of unlawful discrimination in any form."
Meanwhile, an administrative judge ruled last week that at least three
FAA managers manipulated personnel records in order to artificially
meet diversity goals, and violated federal civil-rights laws.
SEEKS NEW CEO
During 12 1/2 years with Ballistic Recovery Systems (BRS), CEO Mark
Thomas led the company's evolution from a strapped-for-cash operation
that lost money on every transaction to a fast-growing, profitable
industry player with a product that at last count had saved 176 lives. Last week,
Thomas announced that he's ready to move on. "It's a very
amicable breakup," he told AVweb on Tuesday. "It's been one
heck of a run. It's been fun. ... But it's just the right time for
me." Robert Nelson, chairman of the board, has been named interim CEO
while the company searches for Thomas's replacement. "I'm working with
the company on a transition plan, and BRS is poised and ready to
grow," Thomas said. More...
|ADD CELL/SATELLITE PHONE INTERFACE TO YOUR LIGHTSPEED
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CITATION CJ3 FAA-CERTIFIED
The FAA presented Cessna with full Type Certification for the Model
525B Citation CJ3
in Wichita last Friday. The newly certified Citation completed 150
hours of function and reliability testing on Oct. 9. Cessna plans to
deliver the first Citation CJ3 later this year. The CJ3 has a longer
cabin than the CJ2, new Williams International FJ44-3A engines and a
fully integrated Collins avionics system. The jet is certified for
single-pilot operation and has a maximum cruise speed of 417 knots at
33,000 feet, according to Cessna. Service ceiling is 45,000 feet and
the maximum gross takeoff weight is 13,870 pounds. More...
SAYS BIZAV PAYS ITS WAY
Somebody must be getting a free ride, because the business-aviation
folks have now declared they too -- like their big brothers, the airlines -- pay more than their fair share of the
cost of the national airspace system. The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA)
hired an economics firm to study the issue, and found that bizav paid $188
million in federal excise taxes in 2001, which was $4 million more
than its share of aviation costs for that year (the latest year they
could get data). "This study refutes recent suggestions that the
general and business aviation community does not pay its fair share of
the costs of operating the nation's air traffic control system," said
NBAA CEO Ed Bolen. More...
LONG FLIGHTS FEEL SHORTER WITH A COMFORTABLE
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SAYS IT WILL SHOOT DOWN SUSPECTED DRUG PLANES
Starting this week, the government of Brazil joins Colombia in
empowering its air force to shoot down suspected drug planes.
The policy is meant to staunch a growing commerce in cocaine using
airstrips hidden in the vast Amazon forest. The Aviation Crime
Prevention Institute (ACPI), based in Ormond Beach, Fla., warned last
week that the policy could increase aircraft thefts, because drug
smugglers will seek to replace any lost aircraft. So far this year,
nine single-engine Cessnas have been reported stolen, four of those in
Baja, Mexico, the ACPI said. Authorities in Brazil said they have
careful procedures in place to ensure that no innocent flyers are shot
down. Planning a trip? More...
AEROSPACE STEPS BACK FROM THE EDGE, VIA KUWAIT?
Aerospace, of Melbourne, Fla., announced yesterday that Kuwait
Finance House - Bahrain has signed an agreement to acquire 75 percent
of the stock of Liberty's parent company, through a combination of
stock purchases from stockholders and a working capital investment.
Liberty's management and staff will remain unchanged. Liberty
manufactures the FAA-certified two-seat Liberty XL2 aircraft. KFH
Bahrain is a multibillion-dollar company and is also an investor in
Millennium Aircraft Leasing, which owns and leases commercial
airliners. "We have known for some time that we have an outstanding
two-seat aircraft, but we now have both the financial capability to
properly support it, and the flexibility to develop the world's best
light aircraft brand," said Liberty's co-founder and president,
Anthony Tiarks, in a news release. More...
E-OX TOP-QUALITY PORTABLE OXYGEN SYSTEM FROM
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JET CRASHES IN MISSOURI; NTSB UPDATES PINNACLE DETAILS
A twin-engine turboprop carrying two crew members and 13 passengers
crashed Tuesday night in Kirksville, Mo. The British Aerospace
Jetstream 32, operating as American Connection Flight 5966, hit trees while
making a visual approach to the Kirksville Regional Airport at about
7:45 p.m. local time, crashed, and burned on impact. The aircraft's
wings apparently were broken off by contact with the trees, NBC News
reported last night. The flight originated in St. Louis. Yesterday,
NTSB investigators reported two survivors. Both of the airplane's data
recorders were also found. The FAA said the crew was last heard from
several minutes before the crash, and gave no indication of trouble.
Also yesterday, the NTSB released additional details from its investigation into the Pinnacle
Airlines crash that killed two crewmen last Thursday.
NTSB dedicated a training academy to accident victims...
change at airport security gates totaled $321,329.48...
Eagles to participate in "Make A Difference Day"...
DHS to report on progress in restoring GA access...
FAA form for
Light-Sport Designated Pilot Examiner now online...
restrict unscheduled arrivals starting Nov. 1...
A TV in Oregon
transmitted a distress signal on 121.5. More...
NEWSTIPS ADDRESS ...
Drop us a line. Heard something that 130,000 pilots might want
to know about? If it caught your eye, it will probably interest
someone else, too. Submit news tips via email to email@example.com.
ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
The Cessna, The Sky ... and the
Cartoonist: Chapters Four and Five
John Ewing continues flight
training with chapters on climbs, descents, and turns. But things are
never easy when going "back to school" in the retired years of life,
and our writer/cartoonist is flummoxed by more technical vocabulary
and high-g-force turns. But he's looking forward to the time he can
move into the right seat of the plane where the "real" pilots sit.
What's New -- Products and
This month AVweb's survey of the latest products and
services for pilots, mechanics and aircraft owners brings you aircraft
airbags, amphibious GlaStars, large flat panel displays, lightweight
headsets and much more.
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVwebs NO-COST twice monthly Business
AVflash? Reporting on breaking news, Business AVflash also focuses on
the companies, the products and the industry leaders that make
headlines in the Business of Aviation. Business AVflash is a must
read. Watch for a Business AVflash regular feature, TSA WATCH: GA
IN THE "SPOTLIGHT". Sign up today at http://www.avweb.com/profile/
MODERNIZING YOUR TRANSPONDER DOESN'T GET ANY
Narco Avionics is proud to announce the
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plug-and-play replacement for the old mechanical KT76A. The
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replacement for the Narco AT50, AT50A, AT150, or AT155. COMING
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FALL SPECIAL: purchase an AT165 and get an AR850 for $99. For
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QUESTION OF THE WEEK ...
Pilots. Controllers. Safety. This week, AVweb asks: Given an
above-average pilot or an above-average controller, who do you think
is more important to safey? PLUS: Results of last week's question on
aviation conventions. More...
HEADING TO THE AOPA EXPO?
Check out WSI's complimentary
AOPA Expo web site for the latest weather conditions and forecasts, at
PICTURE OF THE WEEK ...
"Picture of the Week" celebrates another first today! As we were
reviewing the top ten finalists, we discovered that our #1 and #2
selections were from two people with the same last name and the
same address! How could we pass up the opportunity to name our first
double winner? Congratulations go to the Pullanos of Mays Landing, New
Jersey matching hats are on the way! More...
|Sponsor News and
Access to AVweb and AVflash is provided by
the support of our fine sponsors. We appreciate your
|AVIDYNE CERTIFIES XM DATALINK WEATHER
Avidyne has received a Technical Standard
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|"MID-TEENS PHYSIOLOGY" NO! THAT'S NOT TEENAGER
It's one of the articles in the November issue
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the rules; "Redundant Singles" tips on making it so; "Straight
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|DIAMOND AIRCRAFT OFFERS PERFORMANCE, COMFORT, VALUE,
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YOU LOVE THE CHALLENGES AND REWARDS OF FLYING THE
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|FIRST WORLD FLIGHT: THE ODYSSEY OF BILLY MITCHELL
IS A MUST-READ!|
Three years before Lindbergh's flight to
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|SEPTEMBER 11, 2001 HELD IN MEMORIES FOR GENERATIONS WITH
On September 11, 2001, four American planes were
hijacked and used as bombs. This tragic event affected not only
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music-themed account, composed by a retired commercial pilot, of the
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EVERY PILOT THAT WANTS TO FLY WITH AGGRESSIVE CONFIDENCE
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|THE TURBINE PILOT'S FLIGHT MANUAL HAS ALL JET &
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