FAA proposes new flight restrictions around manhattan
The Federal Aviation Administration is proposing restructuring the low-level VFR airspace around Manhattan in response to this summer’s collision between a sightseeing helicopter and a light aircraft over the Hudson River. FAA wants to separate traffic flying over the river from aircraft flying to and from heliports and seaplane bases by altitude, and will include a new Class B VFR corridor that the agency wants to be the preferred choice of pilots flying over the Hudson.
The new airspace will go from 1,300 feet to 2,000 feet and aircraft within it will operate under direct air traffic control. Uncontrolled VFR traffic will operate between 1,000 and 1,300 feet and pilots will be required to monitor a common frequency and announce entry, progress, and departure from the airspace. The working traffic below 1,000 feet will monitor the same frequency. New charts will be created to clearly delineate the corridors and will highlight the hybridized Class B. “These steps will significantly enhance safety in this busy area and create crystal-clear rules for all of the pilots who operate there,” says FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt. The new rule would also formalize some common practices.
Epa introduces new deicing rule
The Environmental Protection Agency is proposing a new rule that would make deicing practices on aircraft and at airport runways more environmentally friendly while maintaining operational safety. EPA estimates that six major airports, which are among the largest users of aircraft deicing fluid, would likely install centralized deicing pads to comply with the proposed requirements. Airports using lesser amounts of deicing fluid would collect 20 percent of the spent fluid with technologies such as glycol recovery vehicles. The estimated 50 airports that currently use urea to deice runways would use more environmentally friendly deicers, or reduce the discharges of ammonia from continued use of urea. A number of airports in the country already comply with the proposed requirements, says EPA. Visit www.epa.gov/guide/airport.
aci-na — Airports Council International-North America names four winners for its 2009 Environmental Achievement Awards:
• Burbank/Bob Hope Airport won the environmental management award for its Hangar 25, the world’s first aviation facility certified LEED-platinum by the U.S. Green Building Council.
• Reno-Stead Airport’s Stead Solvent Site Remedial Action program was tapped for the 2009 mitigation award. The airport uses state-of-the-art equipment to remove trichloroethylene (TCE) contamination from the groundwater and soil at the airport.
• Dallas/Fort Worth Int’l Airport earned this year’s outreach, education, and community involvement award with its Protect Our Planet Science Festival and DFW Airport Earth Day.
• Toronto Pearson Int’l Airport is the first airport to win the newly added award category for Special/Innovative Projects for its Partners in Project Green & Pearson Eco-Business Zone.
aero mark — an FBO located at Idaho Falls, ID opens its new FBO and hangar building, dubbed Aero Mark XL, featuring a 30,000-sq. ft. hangar and 12,000 sq. ft. of office space.
air safety flight academy — of Glendale, AZ is adding a second campus at the North Texas Regional Airport in Denison. The agreement is a five-part contract with Grayson County, the cities of Sherman, Denison, and Pottsboro, and Grayson County College (GCC). The college will provide dormitory facilities for the flight training students.
airtran, continental — agree to exchange slots at Washington Reagan and New York LaGuardia airports. AirTran will cease Newark Liberty operations on October 25, and announced it will expand operations at LaGuardia and Washington Reagan on November 4.
air trek — of Punta Gorda, FL, in what is termed an unprecedented decision, gets a favorable ruling from an NTSB Administrative Law Judge who orders FAA to pay the air ambulance operator $120,169.35 for attorney fees and expenses pursuant to the Equal Access to Justice Act. According to the law judge, the “Administrator failed to achieve his ultimate goal in the prosecution of the underlying action,” which was the revocation of Air Trek’s air carrier certificate. The revocation order initially contained 38 factual allegations and 14 regulatory violations. As a result of the FAA’s actions, Air Trek was grounded for nearly 15 months.
alaska airlines — adds a second daily non-stop between Austin and San Jose.
american eagle airlines — switches to innovative clean technology when repainting its aircraft, using Pantheon Enterprises’ non-toxic surface pretreatment, PreKote, to prep all of its planes for painting. PreKote, which promotes paint adhesion and prevents corrosion, is an environment-friendly alternative to hexavalent chromium.
arsa — Aeronautical Repair Station Association releases a study that provides fresh insights about the aviation maintenance (MRO) industry’s economic footprint and impact on the U.S. economy. The report, prepared by AeroStrategy of Ann Arbor, MI, determined that spending in the global MRO market exceeded $50 billion in 2008, with North America (the U.S. and Canada) accounting for $19.4 billion of the total. When induced and related economic effects are considered, the MRO industry’s annual impact on the U.S. economy is $39 billion. The report is available at www.arsa.org/node/586.
asa — offers its 2010 FAR/AIM Series for flight crews and for aviation maintenance technicians; www.asa2fly.com.
Bruegger’s — credited with launching the bagel bakery concept nationally, opens its fourth airport location at Cleveland Hopkins Int’l Airport.
capital region int’l airport — in Lansing, MI is granted Foreign Trade Zone status by the federal government.
cessna aircraft co. — a Textron Inc. company, announces that Atlas Air Service AG, its Citation Authorized Sales Representative in Germany, opens a Citation Service Center at Bremen Airport.
city of salina (ks) — Saline County, the Salina Airport Authority, and the Salina Area Chamber of Commerce announce a strategic plan to develop the SLN Aviation Service Center as a premier location for aviation businesses to establish facilities for the maintenance, repair, and overhaul of general aviation, commercial, and military aircraft. The authority is completing more than $5 million in improvements to airfield runways and taxiways. Earlier this year a new $6.1 million, 69,000-sq. ft. maintenance, repair, and overhaul hangar was completed and ready to be leased.
cutter aviation — adds on-demand charter at its new Texas base located at the Cutter Aviation FBO facility at Collin County Regional Airport in McKinney.
dane county regional airport — in Madison, WI announces $20 million in infrastructure investments, including two taxiways; a glycol retention facility; airfield electrical system upgrade; general aviation apron; and corporate hangar area development.
delta, us airways — agree to exchange slots at New York LaGuardia and Washington Reagan National airports, subject to government approvals. US Airways will obtain 42 Delta slot pairs at Washington Reagan, where it will add 15 new daily destinations, using larger dual-class jets. US Airways will transfer to Delta 125 LaGuardia slot pairs currently used by US Airways Express, and will discontinue 26 Express destinations, resulting in a cut of 300 employees at its Piedmont subsidiary. US Airways does not plan changes to mainline flight levels at LaGuardia, including its Shuttle service. A swap of LaGuardia gates will allow Delta to consolidate operations, including its Shuttle.
dot office of inspector general — finds that the FAA’s process for awarding stimulus funds for Airport Improvement Program (AIP) projects does not meet federal requirements, in an advisory to DOT. Federal stimulus requirements call for transparent, merit-based selections and effective administration of funds, but FAA awarded millions to low-priority airport projects of questionable economic merit and to airports whose operators have histories of grant management problems, says the OIG. FAA said it wanted to ensure widespread geographic distribution of funds. DOT was awarded $1.1 billion in stimulus funds for airport improvements; FAA has approved [at press time] some 263 projects worth $873.9 million.
embraer — suspends operations at its Executive Jet Services facility at Bradley Int’l Airport in Windsor Locks, CT, a temporary shutdown due to the economic downturn. The 47,700-sq. ft. center opened in October 2008, one of three new Embraer-owned executive jet centers in the U.S. dedicated to support of the company’s Legacy 600 and Phenom 100 very light jets.
european commission — publishes an advance copy of the new list of aircraft operators and the EU country to which they are assigned for the purpose of complying with the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS). The new version of the list includes nearly 4,000 worldwide operators compared to the 2,755 that appeared on the original list published in February. [For more on this topic, see “Inside the Industry”, page 26.]
european regulators — officially recognize IS-BAO, the International Standard for Business Aircraft Operations, as an industry standard for business aircraft operations. The approval by the European Union’s standard body is expected to facilitate recognition of IS-BAO in the upcoming European Aviation Safety Agency Implementing Rules.
faa — Federal Aviation Administration releases final rulemaking changes to 14 CFR Parts 61, 91, and 141. This final rule addresses the training, qualifications, certification and operating requirements for pilots, flight instructors, ground instructors, and pilot schools. The final rule includes over 100 revision items that together incorporate a vast number of changes to the flight training environment including:
• Qualification and training requirements for pilots that use night vision goggles;
• Clarifications on the use of flight training devices and flight simulators in maintaining instrument recency;
• Changes in the certification requirements for private and sport pilots licenses;
• Changes in the training and proficiency for instrument, commercial, and ATP licenses; and
• Changes in the issuance of medical certificates in some instances.
• FAA also releases a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to update the Part 23 standards to accommodate new light and very light jets. NPRM would standardize certification requirements, clarify areas of nonstandardization and misinterpretation, and codify existing certification requirements in special conditions for new turbojets that incorporate new technologies. Comments are due by Nov. 16.
hawker beechcraft services — opens its expanded, factory-owned aircraft maintenance and service facility at Indianapolis Int’l Airport (IND). The facility includes a 7,700-sq. ft. terminal operated by Signature Flight Support and a 47,300-sq. ft. maintenance hangar.
• Hawker Beechcraft Corp. is awarded a contract to provide the T-6A trainer aircraft to the Israeli Air Force. This is the first Foreign Military Sales Case contract for HBC.
int’l council of air shows — projects that the air show industry will see record attendance during the 2009 season, up 20 percent or more compared with 2008.
jacksonville aviation authority — names three board members to a new Security Committee to evaluate security costs and efficiency at Jacksonville Int’l Airport. The committee is exploring the feasibility of utilizing Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office officers and Community Resource Officers at JAX. The committee is charged with evaluating whether the option makes financial sense.
kendall-tamiami executive airport — receives $4.2 million from FAA for funding to extend the airport’s primary runway. The remaining funding for the project will come from the Florida DOT and the airport authority.
korean air cargo — in September adds a third weekly B-747-400 flight to Toronto Pearson Int’l Airport.
massport — Massachusetts Port Authority unveils a radar system designed to detect large ships in Boston Harbor and measure their height. The $1.3 million radar will enhance an infrared camera system that is already in place to detect ships in the main channel of the Port of Boston when weather obscures them from view from the air traffic control tower at Boston Logan.
meridian air charter — at Teterboro, NJ adds a Bombardier Global 5000 to its fleet of charter aircraft.
nasa — Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, CA is named a 2009 Historic Aerospace Site by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).
new jersey appellate court — overturns a lower court ruling that would have allowed the town of Readington, NJ, to seize, by use of eminent domain, over 600 acres of land surrounding the privately owned, public-use Solberg-Hunterdon Airport. The airport, which is owned and operated by the Solberg family, has desired to retain the ability to expand the current runway for safety. The town, however, planned on seizing the land through the use of eminent domain to preserve “open space” to prevent any future expansion of the airport.
nfpa — National Fire Protection Assn. issues a proposed Tentative Interim Amendment (TIA) to NFPA 407/Standard on Aircraft Fuel Servicing, which addresses aircraft refueling trucks that are equipped with diesel particulate filter (DPF) regeneration equipment. For information visit www.nfpg.org or www.nata.aero.
ntsb — National Transportation Safety Board is making 19 safety recommendations for Helicopter Emergency Medical Services that focus on pilot training; safety management systems to minimize risk; collection and analysis of flight, weather, and safety data; flight data monitoring; development of a low altitude airspace infrastructure; and the use of dual pilots, autopilots, and night vision imaging systems (NVIS).
orlando int’l airport — is one of 13 expanded pilot locations for the Dept. of Homeland Security’s Global Entry International Trusted Traveler Program, bringing the total number of airports using the system to 20. The program uses a biometric scanning machine to help expedite international arrivals for registered U.S. citizens.
phillips 66 aviation — is doubling its aviation fuel rebate to all EAA Young Eagles volunteer pilots through December 31st, offering a $2 rebate for every gallon of avgas purchased using the Phillips 66 Aviation Personal card to introduce young people to the joys of flight.
proof of pudding: fresh gourmet — opens three kiosks at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta Int’l Airport.
sporty’s foundation — awards three scholarships to students in the University of Cincinnati’s Professional Pilot Program.
tampa int’l airport — opens its new Air Cargo Road extension, allowing access for the airport’s east side development area.
tsa — Transportation Security Administration, which has $1 billion in stimulus funds, uses $240 million to purchase enhanced explosives detection devices at the ten airports: Washington Dulles; Lambert-St. Louis; Yellowstone Regional; William P. Hobby/Houston; St. Petersburg/Clearwater; Gallatin Field/Bozeman, MT; Little Rock National; Tulsa; Charlotte Douglas; and Colorado Springs.
• TSA also awards Trinity Technology Group of Fairfax, VA a $10.9 million contract to provide private screening at seven Montana airports. The contract covers screening of both passengers and checked baggage and could create jobs at the seven locations.
twc aviation, inc. — a charter firm based at Van Nuys, CA adds a 14-passenger Gulfstream G550 ultra-long range jet to its fleet.
vector aerospace — Helicopter Services North America at Andalusia, AL now offers Bell Helicopter-certified airframe repair capability for the OH-58 (Kiowa) A and C models.
TSA Rethinks LASP
The Transportation Security Administration reports it will issue a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM) to replace the Large Aircraft Security Program (LASP), which met with much industry resistance.
Brian Delauter, the new acting general aviation manager for TSA, says the agency has worked with industry over several months to consider changes to the LASP proposal. He recently met with the National Business Aviation Association’s Security Council, at which time he said an SNPRM was currently undergoing internal coordination. Doug Carr, NBAA vice president for safety, security, and regulation, says agency officials appear to be “close to having what they believe will be the next version.”
It’s also reported that Delauter is looking into a range of other business aviation security issues, including international waivers, and plans to work with U.S. Customs and Border Protection to improve the waiver request process.
St. Louis-based insurer Travers & Associates introduces coverage that allows customers to only pay for insurance when they actually need it — by the flying hour.
According to Travers, customers pay an hourly rate for each hour the airplane flies (based on the Hobbs Meter). With a nominal fixed monthly base rate, the program allows operators to maintain cash flow and have insurance costs directly correspond to revenue. There is a cap in place that makes sure customers only pay as much as they would have paid had they purchased the annual premium, no matter how many hours the airplane flies. Visit www.traversaviation.com.