¦ The International Air Transport Association announced its forecast for 2009 showing an industry loss of $2.5 billion. All regions, except the US, are expected to report larger losses in 2009 than in 2008. Industry revenues are expected to decline to $501 billion. This is a fall of $35 billion from the $536 billion in revenues forecasted for 2008. This drop in revenues is the first since the two consecutive years of decline in 2001 and 2002. Passenger traffic is expected to decline by 3 percent following growth of 2 percent in 2008. This is the first decline in passenger traffic since the 2.7 percent drop in 2001. Cargo traffic is expected to decline by 5 percent, following a drop of 1.5 percent in 2008. Prior to 2008, the last time that cargo declined was in 2001 when a 6 percent drop was recorded.
¦ An HSE research report on baggage loading was published based on the findings of a collaborative project at East Midlands Airport. The research project explores the health risks associated with manual loading of bags into the holds of narrow bodied aircraft. The report also examines the effectiveness of new technology, extending belt loaders (EBL), and provides an update on previous research and studies. The research was a collaborative project carried out with the cooperation of the airport, airlines, ground handlers, manufacturers of ground support equipment and workers’ representatives, with the aim of improving understanding of the risks and developing agreement on good practices.
¦ The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced results for November showing a 4.6 percent drop in international passenger traffic and a 13.5 percent drop in international cargo. International capacity dropped by 1.0 percent. The November international passenger load factors stood at 72.7 percent, which is a decline of about 3 percentage points over the same month last year.
¦ Advantech, a provider of embedded solutions and services, released two products for its Mobile Resource Management product lines. The VITA-350P, which is an ARM/Xscale, Windows CE embedded, Mobile Data Terminal, and the TREK-305R, which is a 5.7” TFT vehicle-mount display panel. The combination of VITA-350P and TREK-305R offers real-time tracking, as well as an efficient dispatch navigation and vehicle data collection system, designed for fleet owners and drivers alike.
¦ AirBridgeCargo Airlines has signed a major cargo handling contract with Aviapartner Cargo in Amsterdam Schiphol for the provision of full cargo and ramp handling services, effective Jan. 1, 2009. Aviapartner Cargo will provide AirBridgeCargo with a comprehensive range of services at the airport, including loading and unloading of aircraft, pushback and towing, headset, ground power, deicing, crew transport, freight transfer, flight documentation and planning, crew briefing, weight and balance, load-plan and load-sheet. Cargo handling services will incorporate warehousing, ULD build-up and breakdown, inventory control, documentation for import and export, customs clearance, tracing, and dangerous goods handling. It will also support ABC’s specialist requirements for the handling of vulnerable products, live animals and perishable shipments.
¦ Swissport International, an airport ground and cargo handling company, has signed a cooperation agreement with Lufthansa Cargo, one of the world’s leading air cargo carriers, to provide airfreight handling services for the partner airlines of the Lufthansa Cargo Group (incl. Jade Cargo) at Amsterdam Airport for the next three years. Swissport Cargo Services has been selected following an extensive tender process, and should commence its new operations March 1.
¦ DatcoMedia announced an agreement with Southwest Airlines, Delta Airlines and Northwest Airlines to launch a Web version of its GSE Express program for all GSE locations. Partnership with NAPA has developed a new ground support equipment software application to help organize customers’ GSE needs. DatcoMedia’s has used Microsoft® .NET technology to automate the daily routines for the GSE departments.