Industry News

Briefings ...

air charter safety foundation — develops two resource documents and a brochure addressing the need for, and implementation and evaluation of, Safety Management Systems (SMS) programs;

airtran airways — adds service from Orlando Int’l Airport to Sangster Int’l Airport in Montego Bay, Jamaica. AirTran also launches nonstop service from Lexington’s Blue Grass Airport to both Orlando and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Int’l Airport.

akron-canton (OH) airport — reports its busiest January ever, with nearly 107,000 passengers — up 4 percent compared to 2009.

american airlines — a founding member of the oneworld Alliance, files an application with the U.S. DOT to acquire two daily slot pairs to operate year-round scheduled service to Tokyo Int’l Airport at Haneda starting Oct.1, 2010.  American proposes to fly from JFK Int’l Airport.

  • American Airlines and Japan Airlines file an application with U.S. DOT for antitrust immunity to forge a closer relationship and implement a Joint Business Agreement governing the operation of their flights between North America and Asia.

asa — Aviation Supplies & Academics, Inc. of Newcastle, WA offers its 2010 catalog, with textbooks for pilots and aviation maintenance technicians, test preparation books and software, FAA handbooks, pilot supplies, and more;

aspen avionics, inc. — an Albuquerque-based manufacturer of the Evolution Flight Display System, announces the approval of a Supplemental Type Certificate for installation of the Aspen EFD1000H into the Bell 206 and Bell 407 model helicopters. STC was developed in partnership with Keystone Helicopters.

Brian foley & associates — predicts a steady 2.7 percent per year (Compound Annual Growth Rate) between now and 2019, with industry delivering some 8,900 business jets worth $170 billion to be delivered through the period. Some 48 percent are expected to go to non-North American markets, a major shift.

  • Foley’s analysis of bizjet fuel consumption shows some 1.6 billion gallons of jet-A were used by business jets in 2009. Foley forecasts 21 billion gallons to be consumed through the coming decade, with the annual average reaching 2.5 billion gallons in 2019.

cessna aircraft co. — a Textron Inc. company based in Wichita, announces the first Citation CJ4 built on Cessna’s new assembly line records its first flight.

  • Cessna adds seven flight training schools to its global network of some 280 Cessna Pilot Centers (CPCs): Air Associates of St. Louis; Fly Carolina in Rock Hill, S.C.; FreeFlight CDVA in Lokeren, Belgium; Gulf Air Center in Gulf Shores, AL; Gunner Aviation in Rancho Murieta, CA; Phoenix East Aviation in Daytona Beach; and Premier Flight Training in North Las Vegas.

chicago dept. of aviation — commissioner Rosemarie S. Andolino and four CDA team members travel to Abu Dhabi at the invitation of the Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC). In 2009, the CDA signed a memorandum of understanding with ADAC establishing O’Hare Int’l Airport and Abu Dhabi Int’l Airport as “sister airports.”  The agreement outlines a process for the airports to share technical, commercial, and environmental best practices, and establish committees to work cooperatively on various issues.

  • Chicago Dept. of Aviation also receives objections from United and American over planned hikes in O’Hare rents and landing fees by millions of dollars.
    In addition, the city intends to use the money to repay bonds, which carry a 4 percent variable interest rate and aren’t due for another 20 years. The issue surfaced amid talks over the next phase of O’Hare’s expansion plan.

cincinnati/northern kentucky int’l airport — reports that passenger traffic at CVG grew almost 21 percent in the 3rd quarter of 2009 as compared to 2008.

citationair by cessna — enters a deal to become the exclusive private aviation sponsor of the “Imus in the Morning” nationally syndicated morning radio talk show.

clay lacy aviation — at Van Nuys is named the Embraer authorized service center for Phenom 100 and 300 jets in Southern California.

delta air lines — files an application with the U.S. DOT to offer nonstop service between Tokyo’s Haneda Airport and Seattle, Detroit, Los Angeles, and Honolulu.

dubuque regional airport — kicks off a promotional campaign dubbed “Fly DBQ First” to draw more passengers and flights as officials begin work on building a new terminal.

dulles jet center — at Washington Dulles Int’l Airport sees three of four hangars collapse under the weight of some two feet of snow on Feb. 5. Up to 14 aircraft experienced varying degrees of damage, including Gulfstreams, Bombardier Globals, and Dassault Falcons, among others. DJC has retained KCE Structural Engineers, of Washington, D.C. to assist with the deconstruction, site work, design evaluation, and reconstruction. The $60 million center opened in late 2006.

duncan aviation — of Lincoln, NE and Bendix/King by Honeywell sign an agreement that gives Duncan exclusive rights to sell and service Honeywell’s Portable Cockpit Information system, the AV80R Horizon 3D, a portable electronic flight bag.

  • Duncan also reports it completed 627 work orders on Bombardier aircraft models at its Lincoln and Battle Creek, MI facilities, including 270 for Challenger aircraft and 357 for Learjet aircraft. It completed 802 work orders on Cessna Citation aircraft models.

FAA — Federal Aviation Administration proposes a $2.9 million civil penalty against American Eagle Airlines for operating more than 1,000 flights using airplanes on which improper repairs were performed on landing gear doors. FAA alleges that between February and May 2008, American Eagle conducted at least 1,178 passenger-carrying flights using four Bombardier jets with main landing gear doors that had not been repaired in accordance with an A.D. that became effective in August 2006.

  • FAA also issues a final rule affecting sport pilots and flight instructors with a sport pilot rating, based upon the rule changes proposed in an April 2008 Notice of Proposed

Rulemaking. The rule did not finalize all of the proposed changes including:
- Replace sport pilot and sport pilot flight instructor privileges with aircraft category and class ratings;
- Require issuance of category and class ratings by designated pilot examiners; and
- Require one hour of flight training on the control and maneuvering of an airplane solely by reference to instruments for student pilots seeking a sport pilot certificate to operate an airplane with a VH greater than 87 knots CAS and sport pilots operating airplanes with a VH greater than 87 knots CAS.

frontier airlines — adds a third nonstop flight to Denver from Tucson.

gama — General Aviation Manufacturers Assn. reports that industry billings dipped to $19.5 billion, a 21.4 percent decrease from the 2008 record high of $24.8 billion, but the third highest year ever. The piston airplane segment experienced the greatest decline at 54.5 percent. Shipments totaled 965 units in 2009, compared to 2,119 in 2008.

hawker beechcraft — posts a $712 million operating loss in 2009, with sales at $3.2 billion in 2009, compared with the $3.5 billion in 2008.

iata — International Air Transport Assn. reports that 2009 recorded an accident rate for Western-built jet aircraft that was the second lowest in aviation history — one accident for every 1.4 million flights. It is a significant improvement of the rate recorded in 2008 (one accident for 1.2 million flights). 

j.d. power & Associates — 2010 North America Airport Satisfaction Study finds that providing high levels of airport passenger satisfaction results in a strong positive impact on retail spending, with satisfied passengers spending 45 percent more than “disappointed” passengers. Same report names Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County, Kansas City Int’l, and Indianapolis Int’l Airport as tops in their respective airport categories for customer satisfaction.

lambert st. louis int’l airport — begins $50 million in modernization projects resulting in the largest interior renovation in its history. Construction will begin in the fall of 2010. The two-year plan is the latest phase in the Airport Experience Program, focused on improving passenger services and airport operations in Lambert’s Terminal 1.

  • Lambert-St. Louis and the St. Louis Airport Commission also sign off on a development agreement that gives Aero St. Louis, LLC (subsidiary of Aeroterm) the right to develop 76 acres of airport property with prime airfield access. The property is the former manufacturing and office complex of McDonnell Douglas.  Aero’s investment could total $40 million if all phases of the redevelopment plan are fully delivered.

lawa — Los Angeles World Airports appoints Jess Romo, airport manager at LA/Ontario Int’l Airport, to also manage Van Nuys Airport. He replaces Selena Birk, who moves to lead the Regulatory Compliance and Standards Division at LAX.

lee county (FL) port authority — and the Lee County Alliance for the Arts unveil an exhibit entitled “Early African-American Pioneers of Lee County” at Southwest Florida Int’l Airport.

massport — Massachusetts Port Authority approves more than $1 billion to fund 379 projects as part of its fiscal year 2010 – 2014 comprehensive financial plan of capital improvements. The five-year plan, amended annually, is expected to sustain the equivalent of 1,244 full-time construction jobs. It will fund various initiatives, including construction of a consolidated rental car facility and security enhancements.Capital program totals $737 million; Customer Facility Charges will be used to partially finance the rental car facility.

mayo aviation — of Denver is expanding its charter fleet into the Northeast U.S. with the acquisition of Portland, ME operator CharterOps, Inc.

metropolitan nashville airport authority — starts construction of a new 900,000-sq. ft. consolidated rental car facility, or CONRAC, which will accommodate 2,400 units and feature up to 21,000 square feet of covered walkways.

moody’s investors service — says U.S. airports face risks that outweigh their growth potential and has a negative rating outlook for the sector for the next 12 to 18 months. Moody’s said U.S. airport credit remains in a tenuous position as solid growth is not expected to take hold soon.

nata — National Air Transportation Association names Gary Driggers, long-time executive at Midcoast Aviation, this year’s recipient for the William A. “Bill” Ong Memorial Award. NATA’s Award for Distinguished Service is being awarded to the Rep. Jerry Costello (D-IL), chair of the U.S. House Subcommittee on Aviation.

  • NATA also reports that Washington state legislators are considering imposing a tax increase on aircraft owners and operators via House Bill 3176, which would would impose a 0.5 percent excise tax “for the purpose of using any aircraft in the state.” The new excise tax would replace the current fixed fee for aircraft registration.

oag — reports global airline capacity for February 2010 showed positive growth, marking the sixth consecutive month in which overall airline capacity has shown growth, with 272.7 million available seats, an increase of 5 percent over February 2009.

propel aviation sales & services, llc — at Kendall-Tamiami (FL) Airport is named a Caravan Authorized Sales Representative for the states of Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.

schindler — of Switzerland is awarded a $40 million contract to supply 70 escalators, elevators, and moving walks for Los Angeles Int’l Airport.

TSA — Transportation Security Administration reports it is in favor of scaling back a proposal that would include general aviation into the the Large Aircraft Security Program (LASP). TSA is working on a revised plan with industry and expects to have it completed this fall, and will hold the first gathering of a general aviation security working group March 9-10.

united airlines — increases service from Harrisburg Int’l Airport, with six daily nonstop flights between MDT and Chicago O’Hare. 

us airways — returns to Melbourne (FL) Int’l Airport with the the first of 21 weekly flights from the airline’s hub in Charlotte, N.C.

u.s. dot — says Delta Air Lines and US Airways can swap takeoff and landing slots at airports in New York and Washington, but they must sell some of the slots to protect competition. The airlines respond in a joint statement that if the order is implemented as proposed, they don’t expect the deal to go forward.

vermont — Governor Jim Douglas signs a proclamation declaring February “General Aviation Appreciation Month”, highlighting the significance the industry has on Vermont’s statewide economy. 

viking air — of Victoria, B.C. opens a new 84,000-sq. ft. facility to support an expansion of its operations for Series 400 Twin Otter production and ongoing customer support of de Havilland aircraft. Viking Air bought the type certificates for the out-of-production de Havilland Twin Otter in 2007 to further support its spare parts manufacturing and direct sales to operators.

west star aviation — at East Alton, IL has been trained to perform wing tank dry bay modifications on Falcon 50, 900, and 2000 series aircraft.