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Volume 12, Number 49a
December 4, 2006
 
Weather the Holidays with the New Garmin GPSMap 496
JA Air Center, Your Garmin Source, has the new Garmin GPSMap 496 with XM Weather, Terrain, AOPA Airport Guide, Taxiway Database, and built-in StreetPilot Automotive GPS in stock for immediate delivery. Call JA Air Center at (800) 323-5966, or order online.
If you are looking to sell your current GPS, JA Air Center Purchases Used GPS and Avionics — call for current values.

Visit the new GPSMap 496 Blog for more information on this exciting new product from Garmin.
 
The Blame Gameback to top 
 
Sponsor Announcement

LEX DENIES LIABILITY IN COMAIR CRASH
Comair Flight 5191 crashed solely because of the “negligence and wrongful conduct of Comair and its flight crew” according to a response by the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Airport Board and the airport corporation to a suit launched by Comair against the airport and the federal government. Comair said the suit is an attempt to spread the liability burden that will result from the Aug. 27 crash, which killed 49 of the 50 people on board. But the airport board says everything was by the book the morning the Comair flight took off from a general aviation runway that was too short for the Bombardier regional jet. More...

NOTAMS, SIGNAGE PROPER AT LEX, AIRPORT SAYS
The airport board admits that construction work was underway but it claims that NOTAMs were properly created and distributed and that signs leading to Runway 26, the main 7,000-foot runway that the flight had been cleared to, met all standards and that “configuration of the taxiways and runways at the Airport were safe, open and obvious to any pilots exercising ordinary care.” The airport board further alleges that the Comair crew should have noticed they were on the wrong runway in time to abort the takeoff. The statement also points out that hundreds of flights, including two airliners that immediately preceded Flight 5191, had no trouble getting to the right runway in the week prior to the accident. The defense also claims the crew didn’t have its full attention on the tasks at hand while taxiing, an allegation that could become clearer when some crucial evidence is released by the FAA and NTSB. More...

 
New Term Rates Available from Pilot Insurance Center
Private pilots that expect to fly less than 200 annual hours and have 100 or more solo hours — or who expect to fly 201-300 annual hours and have 400 or more solo hours — may qualify for new lower rates from the Pilot Insurance Center (PIC). PIC specializes in providing pilots — from student to ATP — with the life insurance protection they need. A+ RATED CARRIERS — NO AVIATION EXCLUSIONS — Quick and Easy Application Process. Get a Quote from PIC by calling 1-800-380-8376 or visit online.
 
Age 60 Panel Stalematedback to top 
 

NO CONSENSUS IN AGE 60 DEBATE
A panel formed by the FAA to advise on whether the agency should increase the mandatory retirement age of airline pilots to 65 has essentially thrown the issue back on the FAA’s lap. About the only thing the panel, made up of airline, union and pilot organization representatives, could agree on was that the issue was “contentious.” The panel, which was struck Sept. 27 by FAA Administrator Marion Blakey, handed its report to the FAA on Friday but the agency hasn’t released it. Panel members are also not saying much but a report by Bloomberg News says six of the 10 panelists voted against changing the age limit but four of those panelists were from the Air Line Pilots Association, which has long supported the so-called Age 60 rule. "It's basically a tie," Clay Foushee, a Washington consultant who was vice president of operations at Northwest Airlines, told Bloomberg "It doesn't really help clarify the matter at all. It's a very politically difficult situation for the administrator." More...

ECONOMICS, NOT SAFETY, AT ROOT OF AGE 60 SCUTTLE?
It's long been alleged by critics of Age 60 that it was imposed in 1960 at the behest of airlines who wanted to lower their labor and training costs by getting rid of their highest-paid captains (all of whom earned their stripes on piston-powered airliners) to make way for younger pilots who'd already been trained on jets in the military. Pilots unions remain generally opposed to increasing the age (there are exceptions, like Southwest's pilots' association) because it allows younger pilots to move up the seniority ladder quicker. However, as the so-called legacy carriers slash salaries and gut their lucrative pension plans, there are signs that sentiment is changing. More...

IS 70 TOO OLD TO FLY AIRLINERS?
On Nov. 23, the International Civil Aviation Organization adopted a rule that will allow pilots to continue flying until age 65 as long as there's someone younger than 60 in the cockpit with them. Just before that rule came into effect, the medical committee of the European Joint Aviation Authorities (JAA) revealed it had come to the conclusion that there was no medical reason to prevent airline pilots from working past age 60. The committee's opinion was discussed at Flight International's Crew Management Conference in Brussels on Nov. 20. More...

 
Fly with the Bose® Aviation Headset X
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Repair Station Regs Overhauledback to top 
 

NEW AIRCRAFT TECHNICIAN RATINGS PROPOSED
The FAA is proposing changes to the ratings of aircraft technicians under Part 145 by all but eliminating the so-called "class" structure of ratings and replacing it with more comprehensive and encompassing general ratings. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, which has been under construction for about five years, was published last week and appears to fundamentally restructure the qualifications standards for technicians to reflect modern aircraft construction. For example, the airframe rating has four subclasses (small composite construction, large composite, small all-metal and large all-metal) but in those ratings, which were drafted in 1962, the term composite refers to aircraft that have a mix of metal, wood and fabric in their construction and not to the modern definition of carbon fiber and resin. More...

PART 145 REQUIREMENTS MORE STRICT
The NPRM also looks at the general operation of repair stations and recommends some changes to ensure best practices and compliance with regulations. For instance, the new rule proposes to set in stone the requirement that a repair station have "permanent" quarters from which to operate. It won't preclude mobile repair capability but is designed to ensure that fixed facilities exist where technicians can operate comfortably and safely. The new regs would require a repair station to designate a "chief inspector," something many already do. The regs also propose to tighten up the application procedure to weed out bad actors in the industry. More...

 
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New On AVwebback to top 
 

AVWEB NOW HAS DAILY GA NEWS COVERAGE
You can now get the latest general aviation news from AVweb -- the world's premier independent aviation news source -- as it happens at AVweb.com. Or sign up for our news feed and have the most recent headlines pushed directly to your RSS-based news reader. Either way, you'll be able to read the same concise, but comprehensive, news stories that you've come to expect from AVweb. And for major breaking general aviation news, AVweb will send out news alerts via e-mail to keep subscribers informed. Don’t worry -- you'll also continue to receive AVwebFlash every Monday and Thursday morning. More...

NEW ARTICLES AND FEATURES ON AVWEB
COLUMNS

The Pilot's Lounge #107: Penny Foolish, Pound Stupid
How can someone spend a lot of money and even more time restoring an old airplane to a glorious work of flying art and then not spend the money it takes to make it safe? AVweb's Rick Durden is shaking his head in The Pilot's Lounge...
More...

 
Cessna Reason #1 — Pilots First
Leading the aviation industry isn't about bragging rights. Being No. 1 is about providing pilots with all of the things that make owning a Cessna such an irresistible value. Things like safety. Affordability. Reliability. Insurability. Flyability. And the world's largest service organization. All of which have helped make Cessna the Number-One-selling line of new single-engine aircraft. Explore more reasons at CessnaREASONS.com.
 
News Briefsback to top 
 

ATL CLASS B: LEGISLATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION?
Atlanta's Class B airspace changed in October through direct final rule action, and EAA Wednesday publicized its discontent with the FAA's choice to exclude general aviation from that rulemaking process. According to EAA, exclusion of affected parties disregards the FAA's own guidelines for "input by those who will be affected by rule changes." The FAA contends that actions were taken to "enhance safety and to prevent significant air traffic delays in the National Airspace System," but EAA made clear its position that such reasoning in this case is not supported by "valid and legal reasoning" and it fears that such action could be used to set a precedent. More...

NATA: TEB TOWN HALL MEETING AN "OUTSTANDING EXCHANGE"
A town hall meeting held in Teterboro this week to discuss traffic patterns at Teterboro Airport in New Jersey (the ILS approach takes aircraft directly over Hackensack Hospital) and safety and security concerns was "an outstanding exchange between the members of the community surrounding Teterboro Airport and the airport operators and tenants," according to National Air Transportation Association (NATA) President James K. Coyne. Residents not attuned to aircraft noise, emissions and traffic were introduced to new technologies including Required Navigation Performance and the elimination of circle-to-land approaches aimed at improving safety while also addressing quality-of-life issues for groundlings. Other steps have already been taken to improve airport/community relations. More...

BARNSTABLE AIRPORT WELCOMES AUDIT
The manager of Barnstable Airport in Hyannis, Mass., says he's looking forward to the results of an audit by FAA officials last week. "I think it will help us," said Airport Manager Quincy "Doc" Mosby. "I'm positive that we'll do fine." For whatever reason Barnstable, which is served by a handful of regional airlines flying to Cape Cod and nearby islands, is one of just two airports in the U.S. chosen by the FAA for audit this year, according to the Yarmouthport Register. A lawsuit launched by one of the airport's tenants, Rectrix Aerodrome Centers, over the alleged improper use of airport funds might have something to do with it, but the FAA isn't saying. According to the Register, Rectrix claims it was prevented from selling jet fuel at the airport when regulations that would have permitted the sales were concealed by the airport. More...

 
NEW: Flame-Resistant Leather Bomber Jacket from Perrone Leather!
Finally, a classic bomber jacket with safety features utilizing today's technology. The FlameGaurd™ A2 features the technological advances of FAA burn-certified leather and Nomex to bring you the protection you've been waiting for. Get more info or purchase by calling Aeromedix.com at (888)362-7123, or stop by their web site.
 
News Briefsback to top 
 

GAO RECOMMENDS NTSB TIGHTEN UP
The Government Accountability Office wants the NTSB to tighten up its operation on several fronts while doing more in-depth analysis on transportation safety issues. The GAO recently completed a report on the internal practices of the NTSB and found, essentially, that it was very busy investigating accidents and had not fully implemented so-called "leading management practices" in seven identified functions. The best definition for that process we could find is that functions are codified and written down so that all staff (theoretically) follow the same game plan. At any rate, the NTSB says it agrees it needs to pull up its socks in that area and also that it should do more safety studies when it sees trends developing in accidents. It's done four such studies in the last six years. On the financial side, the GAO says the NTSB's money-losing training center should either be made more effective or closed. More...

WAGSTAFF, DIAMANDIS HONORED
Aerobatic performer and competitor Patty Wagstaff was named the first winner of the Greater Miami Aviation Association's Amelia Earhart Award recognizing outstanding achievement in aviation by women. Another new award, the Neil Armstrong Award for aerospace leaders, went to Peter Diamandis, the CEO of the X Prize Foundation, which sponsored the competition for privately funded space exploration won by SpaceShipOne in 2005. The awards were handed out as part of the association's Wright Brothers Memorial Awards Gala Evening on Nov. 17. "We are the oldest aviation association in the U.S., and we are honoring women in aviation for their contribution through the years for the first time," Association President Oscar Garcia told the Miami Herald. More...

SMALL AIRPORT LANDS RE-ENGINING FACILITY
Inspiration for all those little airports out there looking for industry to help justify the business case for their existence comes from Three Rivers, Mich. The small community (8,000) has been chosen by the Clifford Development Group and Hov-Aire as the site for facility to install FADEC-controlled Williams FJ44 engines in Citation II aircraft. The mod, which is expected to be STC'd in 2007, boosts performance and range in the older-model Cessnas. The program was announced at the National Business Aviation Association's convention in October. More...

BONES RECOVERED FROM WWII BOMBER WRECK
Human remains have been recovered from the wreck of a Halifax bomber that was shot down in Poland in 1944. Ground penetrating radar was used to pinpoint the hulk of the four-engine bomber that was on a secret mission to supply Polish resistance forces. It was brought down by anti-aircraft fire, killing five Canadian and two British crewmembers. "It turned out that there is only a few tons of scrap, but we also found personal belongings, badges, maps, containers with ammo and cardigan pullovers," Piotr Sliwowski, chief historian of the Warsaw Rising Museum told CanWest News. "The most important were, of course, human remnants which gave it another, deeper dimension." More...

 
ASO — A Better Way to Sell Your Aircraft Share
Finding aircraft share buyers can be almost impossible. FBO bulletin board flyers are too limited, and ads in national publications are too broad. There's a better way, with ASO's Partnership Ads. List your share on ASO, the most trusted place for aircraft sales, where buyers search geographically to easily find your partnership listing. For a limited time, select Partnership Ads are complimentary. To get your share in front of potential buyers, call (888) 992-9276, or visit online.
 
News In Briefback to top 
 

ON THE FLY
Spectrum Aeronautical has received Organizational Designated Airworthiness Representative...
Galvin Flight Services will host the Pacific Northwest debut of the Diamond D-Jet...
U.S. Customs has set up an inspection center at Santa Maria Airport...
An Atlanta man died when the Cirrus SR22 he was flying crashed...
Dr. Jon Jordan, the FAA's Air Surgeon, is being recognized by his alma mater. More...

AVWEB'S NEWSTIPS ADDRESS...
Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something that 130,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to newstips@avweb.com. What have you heard? More...

READER FEEDBACK ON AVWEB'S NEWS COVERAGE AND FEATURE ARTICLES
AVMAIL

AVmail: Dec. 4, 2006
AVmail this week about safer, shorter runways, WAAS upgrades, TCAS troubles in Brazil and much more. More...

 
Tired of the High Cost of Fuel? GAMIjectors Are the Answer!
Don't be grounded by sky-high gas prices. Install GAMIjectors, and you could see up to a 20% cut in your aircraft's fuel bill. Balanced fuel/air ratios make your aircraft's engine run smoother, cooler, and more efficiently. Call 888-FLY-GAMI, or order a kit online for your Continental or Lycoming engine.
 
AVweb Audio Newsback to top 
 

AVWEB AUDIO NEWS
AVweb posts audio news on Mondays, plus a new in-depth interview each Friday. In Friday's podcast, you'll find an interview with Eclipse Aviation CEO Vern Raburn. Honda v-p Jeffrey Smith, who talked everything HondaJet with AVweb at Honda Aircraft's open house last Monday. And AVweb's podcast index includes interviews with Honda Aircraft's Jeffrey Smith; Cirrus Design cofounder and CEO Alan Klapmeier; Cessna chairman, president and CEO Jack Pelton; Spectrum Aeronautical chairman Linden Blue; and Adam Aircraft chairman Rick Adam. In today's news summary, hear about how Lexington Airport denies any liability for the Comair crash, the age-60 commission deadlocked on extending the retirement age for airline pilots, rules for maintenance facilities and technicians could get more strict, a bomber that crashed some 62 years ago was unearthed and more. Remember: In AVweb's podcasts, you'll hear things you won't find anywhere else.

Brought to you by Bose Corporation. More...

AVWEB'S BUSINESS AVFLASH
HAVE YOU SIGNED UP yet for AVweb's 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/ More...

 
WingX 2.0 Now Available — With NACO Approach Charts, SmartTaxi™, Online Weather, and Podcasts!
Hilton Software LLC has just released WingX 2.0 for the Pocket PC — now with approach charts, weather images, podcasts, N-number search, helicopter W&B, and SmartTaxi™ to help prevent runway incursions. Of course, this is in addition to WingX's great Weight and Balance, Route Planning, FARs, color-coded weather reports, and superb E6B capabilities. Excellent A/FD with auto-dial. WingX is now GPS-enabled! Learn more and download WingX at HiltonSoftware.com.
 
FBO Of The Weekback to top 
 

FBO OF THE WEEK: TAC AIR KTYS

AVweb's "FBO of the Week" ribbon goes to TAC Air at KTYS in Knoxville, Tenn.

AVweb reader David Stone said he literally got a warm reception from the facility's staff upon his departure.

"I showed up Wednesday before Thanksgiving with my wife and two sons. TAC Air had crew waiting with a luggage cart and even unloaded the plane. What wins my nomination, though, is TAC Air employees pulling the plane into a heated hanger Saturday morning after I called to have the plane pulled out front. The plane was covered in frost, and they saved me an hour and did not charge me a dime."

Keep those nominations coming. For complete contest rules, click here.

AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBOs in the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here next Monday!

More...

 
It's a Small Gift That Gives Big All Year Long
Give a membership gift to the National Aeronautic Association (NAA), our nation's oldest aviation organization. At $39 a year, NAA membership is a terrific value for any aviation enthusiast! Members receive the Smithsonian's Air & Space and NAA's Aero magazines, plus access to aviation records, product discounts, and much more. Call (703) 527-0226 (EST), or order online.
 
Video Of The Weekback to top 
 

VIDEO OF THE WEEK: MOUNTAIN AIR STRIP LANDING
Following up on last week's theme of challenging landings, we've got an air strip in Courchevel, France that you'll have to see to believe. Not only does the PC-12 pilot in this clip have contend with mountainous slopes, but he only has 550 m (1,800') to do it.

Click through to view the video, originally posted on YouTube by user Intagen. More...

 
The Best Tool in Your Toolbox Is Information!
Save money and time with helpful articles from Light Plane Maintenance magazine. Light Plane Maintenance brings you tips and techniques for maintenance procedures you can perform legally and easily on your aircraft. Order your subscription online for savings from the regular rate.
 
The Lighter Side Of Flightback to top 
 

SHORT FINAL
Overheard while flying practice approaches at Sioux City, Iowa:

Tower: "Skylane Eight Seven Charlie, cleared for the approach; caution, waterfall in the area."

Short silence, presumably while the Skylane pilot questioned passengers on the transmission.

Skylane: "Eight Seven Charlie, say again?"

Tower: "Skylane Eight Seven Charlie, cleared for the approach; caution, waterfall in the area."

Again, short silence.

Skylane: "Ah, cleared for the approach, but what do you mean by the waterfall caution?"

Tower: "Waterfall, you know: Ducks and geese...Waterfoul." More...

 

AVWEB APPRECIATES YOUR CONTINUED SUPPORT OF OUR SPONSORS,
WHO BRING YOU TODAY'S NEWS AND FEATURES AT NO COST TO YOU

Choose the Flight Explorer Edition Right for You
Flight Explorer is an information system tracking commercial and general aviation flights. With the Personal Edition, view air traffic for the U.S., Canada, or New Zealand and monitor and display real-time delay information, TFRs, SUAs, and more. With the Pilot Edition, view weather along a route, receive alerts with your preliminary flight plan, and have an e-mail sent to someone on departure or arrival. Click here for more information and to subscribe.

Going Off to Visit Friends and/or Family This Holiday Season?
Get there by sharing a ride. Pilot or passenger, long cross-country or short hop, PilotShareTheRide.com is for you! No cost to sign up, and you will save by sharing expenses! Check out the web site today.

Power Flow Is Now FAA-Approved for the Diamond DA40
The Power Flow Tuned Exhaust System is now standard equipment on all 2007 Diamond DA40 aircraft. Benefits include: Speed increases of up to 8 knots; 15% more climb; or, go the same speeds and save up to 1.2 gallons per hour. Starting in October, existing DA40 owners can retrofit their aircraft. For complete details, go online.

 
Names Behind the Newsback to top 
 

AVwebFlash is a twice-weekly summary of the latest news, articles, products, features, and events featured on AVweb, the internet's aviation magazine and news service.

Today's issue was written by Contributing Editors Russ Niles (bio) and Glenn Pew (bio).

Click here to send a letter to the editor. (Please let us know if your letter is not intended for publication.)

Comments or questions about the news should be sent here.

Have a product or service to advertise on AVweb? A question on marketing? Send it to AVweb's sales team.

If you're having trouble reading this newsletter in its HTML-rich format (or if you'd prefer a lighter, simpler format for your PDA or handheld device), there's also a text-only version of AVwebFlash. For complete instructions on making the switch, click here.

Aviate, navigate, communicate.