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Volume 7, Number 23
June 10, 2009
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CBP on "Heightened Alert" During Customs Checkback to top 

A spokeswoman for the Washington headquarters of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) says the drawing of weapons in the ramp inspection of an aircraft in Long Beach, Calif., last month was justified but not "normal." Kelly Ivahnenko also told AVweb that general aviation pilots can expect more ramp checks by Customs and Border Protection agents thanks to the newly instituted Electronic Advance Passenger Information System (eAPIS). She stressed it's unlikely many of the checks will have the level of intensity employed May 22 with Long Beach, Calif., pilot David Perry and his three passengers. Ivanhenko said in an interview on Tuesday that there was a "heightened alert" involved in the Long Beach operation but she also said she could not discuss the circumstances that led to a more aggressive posture than normal by the CBP and local police. She also said that while eAPIS had nothing to do with the Long Beach inspection, information provided through eAPIS could result in more frequent GA inspections. The system, which involves the online filing of flight and passenger information for transborder flights, became mandatory on May 18. In an interview and podcast with AVweb, Perry said he and his passengers were put in unnecessary peril by gun-wielding enforcement officials. Ivahnenko stressed Perry's experience is not what most pilots should expect if they're checked by the CBP. "This I would not classify as common or routine," she said. But she also said the Long Beach action was justified, even though the search turned up nothing illegal. "While the involvement of more than one law enforcement agency and the heightened alert of the situation were slightly unusual, it is within (CBP's) authority to inspect inbound and outbound travelers, vehicles, planes, cargo, etc.," she told AVweb. She also said that only the Long Beach police officers assisting the operation actually drew weapons and CBP agents kept theirs holstered, something Perry vehemently disputes. "Every one of them had their weapons out," Perry said More...

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Onex Seeks to Expand Aircraft Leasing Holdingsback to top 

Onex Corp., one of the parent companies of Hawker Beechcraft, is reportedly making a play for International Lease Finance Corp., the world's largest aircraft leasing company. ILFC is now owned by American International Group (AIG), which is busy shedding assets to pay off the loan portion of its $182 billion government bailout. ILFC leases airliners to most of the world's airlines and has been a reliable cash cow for AIG since it purchased the company from founder Steven Udvar-Hazy in 1990. Onex, which bought Raytheon's general aviation division in partnership with Goldman Sachs and renamed it Hawker Beechcraft in 2008, is a Toronto-based investment company that frequently delves into aerospace enterprises. Onex President Gerry Schwartz is characteristically tight-lipped about the ILFC bid. More...

Business Aviation Will Help Companies Not Only Survive
But Prosper During the Current Financial Crisis

To be your most productive, and your most efficient, you must keep flying. Because in so doing, you will emerge from these times even stronger than before. And you will replace the uncertainty that surrounds many, with the confidence and courage to light the way for all. Visit
If It's Green, It's Got to Be Good (Right?)back to top 

The FAA and American Airlines have wrapped themselves in the eco banner in selling the benefits of the NextGen airspace system. The agency and airline are promoting the environmental benefits of the system with the announcement that the latest technology and techniques will be used for a "green" flight from Paris to Miami on Thursday. But what it really comes down to is that the 767 will go GPS direct rather than following the airways and use gradual rather than stepped climbs and descents. In other words, it will operate like general aviation has for more than a decade. The flight has earned a remarkable amount of attention from the mainstream media. More...

EAA AirVenture Oshkosh — The World's Greatest Aviation Celebration
July 27 - August 2 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin
This year is too BIG to miss. Literally. Witness the world's largest airliner — Airbus A380 — overtaking AeroShell Square; see the first world public debut of Virgin Galactic's WhiteKnightTwo; attend appearances by the U.S. Airways Flight 1549 cockpit crew; and enjoy performances by the Doobie Brothers on opening day and comedian Jeff Dunham Saturday night. This is your last chance to save! Buy your tickets online before June 15 and save $2 on every daily ticket and $5 on every weekly ticket. Visit today.
Union, Airline Clash Over Airbus Upgradesback to top 

Air France has accelerated its effort to replace pitot tubes on its Airbus aircraft after members of one pilots union threatened to refuse to fly the unmodified airplanes, the New York Times reported on Tuesday. The airline had said over the weekend it would replace the sensors on all Airbus A330 and A340 airplanes over the next few weeks. But on Monday, Alter, a union representing about 12 percent of Air France pilots, posted a notice on its Web site urging its members to "refuse any flight on an A330/A340 which has not had at least two pitot sensors modified," according to the Times. SNPL-ALPA, which represents the largest share of Air France pilots, made no such suggestion, but union spokesman Eric Derivry told the Associated Press: "What we know is that other planes that have experienced incorrect airspeed indications have had the same pitots. And planes with the new pitot tubes have never had such problems." More...

Share Your Thoughts on Aviation Headsets
What's important to you when choosing an aviation headset? Please take a few moments to complete an online survey. Help influence the headset industry.

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News Briefsback to top 

The NTSB this week is holding a three-day hearing on the January ditching of US Airways Flight 1549 in New York's Hudson River. On Tuesday, the board heard Capt. Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger recall his decision-making process on that day. After considering all the possible choices, "The only option remaining in the metropolitan area that was long enough, wide enough and smooth enough to land was the Hudson River," he said. "I couldn't afford to be wrong." Passenger Billy Campbell, who was the last passenger off the airplane, told the NTSB that the jolt when the airplane hit the water was violent, and water immediately began to rush into the cabin through a broken window. After everyone got out of the airplane, the life raft that some were in began to sink, because it was still tethered to the airplane, but somebody on a nearby boat tossed them a knife to cut the rope. Campbell said there was not just one lucky break that day but many that allowed everyone to survive. "There were 14 or 15 miracles that had to occur," he said. More...

You and Your Dollars Go Further in a Diamond
When smart pilots compare safety statistics and resale values, plus maintenance, insurance and operating costs, it's clear that investing in a Diamond pays big dividends. Top that off with Diamond's outstanding performance, luxurious interior and cutting-edge technology, and there's no question — you'll go further in a Diamond.
Opinion & Commentaryback to top 

The airplane's automation is a popular and understandable whipping boy. But, asks resident blogger Paul Bertorelli on the AVweb Insider, what if the crew just drove the thing into a level 6 thunderstorm? Sometimes the simplest theories are the hardest ones to accept. More...

Corporate Aviation Management Certificate with Embry-Riddle and the NBAA
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University offers the most comprehensive Corporate Aviation Management Certificate program approved by the NBAA Professional Development Program (PDP) for the Certified Aviation Manager (CAM). For details, visit Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University's web site at
Who's Whereback to top 

Don Campion
Don Campion, president of Banyan Air Services, was inducted into the Florida Aviation Trades Association (FATA) Entrepreneurial Excellence Hall of Fame. Banyan opened 30 years ago at Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport.

Pilot Journey Airplane Sales has added two staff members. Dan Luketic will be Director of Airplane Sales and Marketing, and Doris Fowler will be the Assistant to the Director.

Get a promotion or a new job? Your colleagues want to know about it, and AVwebBiz can get the word out. Drop us a line about the staff appointment, with a nice recent photo, and we'll do our best to include it in our new section, "Who's Where." The items will be permanently archived on AVweb for future reference, too. More...

International Civil Aviation Organization — ICAO
ICAO documents are now at the AVweb Bookstore in convenient and economical eBook format. ICAO, a division of the United Nations, sets the global standards for international aviation, including communications, airport design, overseas routes, ATC, hazmat transport, and much more. If you are involved with international air transportation, these documents are critical information for your operations and planning departments. Click here for the growing product listing.
AVweb Media: Look, Listen, Laugh and Learnback to top 

Thanks to seismic shifts in the news business, many local television outlets can no longer afford their own turbine-powered eye-in-the-sky. As a result, Robinson is doing a brisk business selling its R44-based ENG camera ship. AVweb visited Robinson in Torrance, California for a closer look. More...

Video Marketplace Spotlight

Bendix/King AV8OR Demo
When Bendix/King rolled out its AV8OR portable GPS last summer, the $749 retail price — about $675 discounted — caught GPS buyers by surprise. So did the AV8OR's feature set, which includes a touchscreen interface and automotive navigation as built-in standard capability. In this video, AVweb's editors took the AV8OR out for a spin to wring out its major features.

Click here to watch the video (and discover other great products) at AVweb's Video Marketplace.

Economic Challenges Call for Proven Advertising Results — AVweb Delivers Results
Since 1995, AVweb has been the most comprehensive no-cost aviation site online. Advertisers reach over 255,000 pilots, aircraft owners, and aviation professionals via a unique and effective combination of newsletter text messages and web site banner ads. Links send readers directly to advertisers' web sites for instant information. Click now for details on AVweb's cost-effective programs.
The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You!back to top 

Our best stories start with you. If you've heard something 200,000 pilots might want to know about, tell us. Submit news tips via email to What have you heard? More...

Safety Equipment — Add Aviation Safety to Your MEL
A Minimum Equipment List is not complete without a subscription to Aviation Safety. Discover this informative, instructive monthly publication that sharpens your air readiness. Order your subscription online for savings from the regular rate.
Names Behind the Newsback to top 


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

The AVwebBiz team is:

Timothy Cole

Editorial Director, Aviation Publications
Paul Bertorelli

Russ Niles

Contributing Editors
Mary Grady
Glenn Pew

Features Editor
Kevin Lane-Cummings

Scott Simmons

Jeff van West

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