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Solomon Airlines to restore two routes

Solomons (Solomon Airlines) (flysolomons.com) (Honiara) is restoring two weekly routes after March 26: Honiara-Nadi and Honiara-Port Moresby. Both routes will be operated with Airbus A320s.

Copyright Photo: Peter Gates.

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Cebu Pacific mulls long-range low-cost flights

Cebu Pacific Air (Manila) is considering long-range, low-cost flights if the demand develops according to this article by Flightglobal. The airline does not have long-range aircraft on order.

Read the article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss.

Cebu Pacific Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Mandarin Airlines to start Taichung-Seoul service

Mandarin Airlines (Taipei) will start Taichung-Seoul (Incheon) flights on April 6 per Airline Route. The new route will operate with Embraer ERJ 190s and operate four times a week.

Mandarin Airlines was established on June 1, 1991 and was originally a joint venture of China Airlines and the Koos Group. The Chinese name of Mandarin Airlines was therefore created as a synthesis of characters from both investors. In the beginning, Mandarin Airlines mainly operated direct flights from Taipei to Canada’s Vancouver, Australia’s Sydney and Brisbane with large aircraft.

On October 31, 1992 the China Trust Group pulled out their investment in Mandarin Airlines, thus turning the airline into a company wholly owned by China Airlines.

On August 8, 1999, Mandarin Airlines merged with Formosa Airlines.

Copyright Photo: Manuel Negrerie. Embraer ERJ 190-100 IGW B-16829 (msn 19000302) of Mandarin Airlines arrives back at the Taipei (Sung Shan) base. B-16829 is painted in the special Sun Moon Lake/Mt. Jade color scheme.

t’way launches its third international route to Siem Reap

t’way (Seoul-Incheon) has launched its third international route. The seasonal Seoul (Incheon)-Siem Reap (Cambodia) will operate until March 22.

Copyright Photo: Joe G. Walker.

Emirates brings the Airbus A380 to Kuala Lumpur

Emirates Airline (Dubai) introduced the Airbus A380 to the Dubai-Kuala Lumpur route on January 1.

Flight EK 346 was piloted by Malaysian national Captain Kwong Yung Ling which arrived at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) on Sunday afternoon to a traditional welcome of a water canon salute.

Joining Captain Kwong on the flight deck for the first flight was First Officer Abdulaziz Alusaimi from the United Arab Emirates.

Copyright Photo: Arnd Wolf.

Emirates Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Turkish Airlines to launch Istanbul-Novosibirsk flights

Turkish Airlines (Istanbul) is launching nonstop service from Istanbul to Novosibirsk (Siberia), the third largest city in Russia, on March 14 according to Airline Route. The new route will be operated with Boeing 737-800s.

The company is also planning new service to Bremen and Leipzig.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems.

Turkish Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Transaero Airlines commences flights to the Seychelles

Transaero Airlines (Moscow) on January 2 launched a new Boeing 777 route between Moscow and Male. The new route will be operated every 10 days.

Copyright Photo: Konstantin von Wedelstaedt.

Transaero Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Aegean Airlines drops the Athens-Berlin Tegel route

Aegean Airlines (Athens) is planning to drop the Athens-Berlin (Tegel) route on January 8 according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Pedro Pics.

Aegean Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Pluna Lineas Aereas enters the Chile domestic market

Pluna Lineas Aereas (Montevideo) launches the Santiago-Concepcion domestic route in Chile on February 29 per Airline Route. The new route will be operated with Bombardier CRJ900s.

Copyright Photo: Alvaro Romero.

Pluna Slide Show: CLICK HERE

American Eagle to drop the Chicago O’Hare-Calgary route on January 30

American Eagle Airlines (2nd) (Dallas/Fort Worth) is planning to delete the Chicago (O’Hare)-Calgary route on January 30 according to Airline Route. The route is operated with Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

American Eagle Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Adria Airways to resume Ljubljana-London Gatwick flights

Adria Airways (Ljubljana) will resume Ljubljana-London (Gatwick) service on March 28 according to Airline Route. The route will be flown with Airbus A319s.

Copyright Photo: Andi Hiltl.

Adria Airways Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Frontier launches Kansas City-Orlando seasonal service and nonstop D.C. service from Grand Rapids and Madison

Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver) is launching service on three new routes: Kansas City (MCI)-Orlando (MCO), Grand Rapids (GRR)-Washington Reagan (DCA) and Madison,(MSN)-Washington Reagan (DCA).
Nonstop seasonal service between Kansas City and Orlando begins on January 5, 2012, and continues through April 15, 2012. The service will initially operate four days per week, then increase to six days per week beginning on February 23, 2012. Service will be provided on a mix of 99-seat Embraer ERJ 190 and 138-seat Airbus A319 aircraft.

Additionally, Frontier will launch two new routes to Washington (Reagan National), with nonstop service from Grand Rapids beginning on January 4, 2012, and from Madison beginning on January 5, 2012. Service will be provided on 138-seat Airbus A319 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

Frontier Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Lufthansa to drop the Dusseldorf-Athens route

Lufthansa (Frankfurt) on January 21 will eliminate the Dusseldorf-Athens route per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Rolf Wallner.

Lufthansa Slide Show: CLICK HERE 

Iceland Express to drop service to eight destinations

Iceland Express (Reykjavik) will not be operating next summer to the following markets from Keflavik according to Airline Route: Aalborg, Edinburgh, Friedrichshafen, Newark, Oslo, Stockholm (Arlanda), Winnipeg and Zurich.

This means the flights to the USA and Canada will be terminated.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best. Holidays-Czech Airlines is operating its two Airbus A320s for Iceland Express after the demise of Astraeus Airlines. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Route Map:

LOT Polish Airlines modifies its color scheme

LOT Polish Airlines (Warsaw) in November once again modified its livery. The first aircraft to be repainted is this Boeing 737-4Q8 SP-LLL (msn 25164), formerly operated by LOT Charters in the Centralwings livery. The revised livery has removed the blue cheatline along the window line. As an addition, a red accent stripe has been added on the tail. The logo remains the same.

The fleet is slowly being repainted.

Copyright Photo: Damian Leśniak. SP-LLL is seen at the Warsaw base on December 3, 2011 in the new look.

LOT Polish Slide Show: CLICK HERE

US Airways to add two Express routes from Charlotte on March 25

US Airways (Phoenix) will add two Express routes from the Charlotte hub on March 25 according to Airline Route: Charlotte-Des Moines will be operated with CRJ200 aircraft and Charlotte-Omaha will be operated with CRJ700 aircraft.

In addition, the newly-announced Philadelphia-Salt Lake City mainline route will be launched on May 24 with Airbus A320 equipment.

In addition on March 25, US Airways will add 10 new routes from Washington (Reagan National) as a result of the slot swap with Delta Air Lines. US will add new routes from DCA to Birmingham, AL, Fayetteville, NC, Fort Walton Beach, Islip, Jacksonville, NC, Little Rock, Memphis, Omaha, Pensacola and Tallahassee.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum. Please click on the photo for additional information.

SeaPort Airlines to fly Portland-Wenatchee starting on March 1

SeaPort Airlines (Portland) will begin Portland, Oregon-Wenatchee, WA service starting on March 1 with Pilatus PC-12 turboprops. The new route will be operated three times a day during business days according to the Wenatchee World.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Top Copyright Photo: Joe G. Walker.

Current Pacific Northwest Route Map (the airline also operates in the Mid-South):

Bottom Copyright Photo: SeaPort Airlines.

Jade Cargo International suspends cargo operations

Jade Cargo International (Shenzhen) has suspended all cargo operations.

On December 31, 2011 the company issued the following short statement:

“The temporary suspension of Jade Cargo services is due to overall weak air cargo demand. It will also provide the shareholders with an opportunity to coordinate with stakeholders to continue with the restructuring of the company’s financial structure.”

Jade Cargo International was established in October 2004 and is co-owned by Shenzhen Airlines, which has a 51% stake, Lufthansa Cargo with 25% and DEG – Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH, a subsidiary of the German state-owned bank KfW with 24% of the stock. Cargo operations commenced on August 5, 2006.

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton.

Jade Cargo Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Hebei Airlines takes delivery of its first two Embraer 190s

Hebei Airlines (Shijiazhuang) on December 20 took delivery of its first two Embraer ERJ 190-100LRs in a ceremony held at the Embraer’s headquarters in São José dos Campos, Brazil. The sale of these two E190s was confirmed this month, and the purchase of another eight jets is still subject to the Chinese government approval. Based in Shijiazhuang, the capital city of China’s Hebei Province, the E190s will be deployed to support establishing a hub network within Hebei Province, while also flying from Shijiazhuang to other provincial capitals, with more routes and frequencies.

The airline commenced operations on June 29, 2010.

Copyright Photo: Embraer.

Air Seychelles to end service to London, Paris and Italy on January 10

Air Seychelles (Mahe) is ending service to London (Heathrow), Paris (CDG), Milan (Malpensa) and Rome (Fiumicino) all on January 10.

Air Seychelles launched its London operations on October 26, 1983 using a British Caledonian Airways DC-10 to fly the first international inaugural flight of the airline. The Rome service was launched in March 1993 and flights to Paris started in December 1996.

As part of its restructuring and repositioning process to turn into regional airline, Air Seychelles has announced that it will be ending its European operations to Paris, London, Rome and Milan. Three Paris flights were initially to operate until end of March 2012.

Air Seychelles in 2012 will be operating only to Mauritius and Johannesburg using its Boeing 767-300 aircraft.

Passenger bookings to the three European destinations have continue to drop significantly after January 9, 2012 and the company made a commercial decision to cease operations to these European destinations early.

Air Seychelles has on-going discussions for a code share agreement with Etihad Airways to use an Air Seychelles aircraft on the Mahe-Abu Dhabi-Mahe route to link with Etihad’s international operations.

Blue Panorama anticipates that it will be operating flights between Italy and Seychelles soon.

Air Seychelles and its shareholder are in the process to finalize the return of its three Boeing 767-300 aircraft to the lessor.

For its planned regional operations next year, Air Seychelles will be acquiring a narrow-body Boeing 737-800 or an Airbus A320 for its operations to India, East Africa and the Indian Ocean.

Copyright Photo: Air Seychelles. The company’s 2011 livery on this Boeing 767-37D ER S7-AHM (msn 26328) will be short-lived.

Sky King adds C and T Charters titles to its Boeing 737-4Q8 N916SK

Sky King Airlines (Lakeland) has converted its titles on its Boeing 737-4Q8 N916SK (msn 24706) from Sky King to C&T Charters, its main Cuban charters client. The airliner also carries “Your Bridge 2 Cuba” sub-titles.

C&T Charters, Inc. (Coral Gables) is a company that offers charter flights from the United States to Cuba. The company was founded in June 1991 by businessman John Henry Cabanas, and has the required authorization and licenses from the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) U.S., as well as the landing rights in Cuba for this purpose.

C&T has transported over 1 million passengers to and from Cuba over the past twenty years.

Sky King flies for C&T Charters from Miami to Havana and Camagüey and also to Havana from New York and Chicago.

N916SK is pictured at Miami International Airport with the new look.

Copyright Photo: Robert Collazo.

Sky King Slide Show: CLICK HERE


The past 10 years have been the safest for airline safety in the United States

As we celebrate a new year it is appropriate to look back. The past 10 years has been the safest 10-year period for airline safety in the history of commercial aviation in the United States. In this 10-year period, U.S. air carriers only recorded 153 fatalities. That amounts to two deaths for every 100 million passengers carried. A remarkable record indeed. For all of the aviation professionals, we salute you for a job well done. It is surely the safest way to travel according to the Associated Press and this article by the Salt Lake Tribune.

Read the article: CLICK HERE


Happy New Year to all of our readers

We would like to wish all of our staff photographers, contributors and readers of the Airliners Gallery blogs and our our photo library our very best wishes for a safe and successful 2012.

How are we doing? We are proud to announce our readership of this World Airline News blog is up 198 percent in the past 12 months. We welcome all of our new readers and we pledge to give you the best (and free without ads) airline news in the coming year.

All contributions, articles, news and newsworthy images are always welcome.

Bruce Drum


World Airline News

Airliners Gallery

Copyright Photo: Ariel Shocron.

WestJet’s CEO Gregg Saretsky is considering smaller jets

WestJet Airlines’ (Calgary) Chief Executive Officer Gregg Saretsky believes it has already achieved its goals for sufficiently serving its medium size Boeing 737 markets in Canada. In order for the company to grow it needs to acquire smaller jets to serve smaller markets. The smaller aircraft will feed the main routes and eventually the airline will add long-range routes with larger aircraft according to this interview with Saretsky in the Globe and Mail.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

WestJet Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin.

Sunwing Airlines introduces a new logojet to promote Oasis Hotels and Resorts

Sunwing Airlines (Toronto) has introduced this new Boeing 737-800 to promote the Oasis Hotels and Resorts.

Copyright Photo: Gilbert Hechema. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Sunwing Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Iberia cancels 118 flights, pilots call for two more days of strikes to protest Iberia Express

Iberia’s (Madrid) pilots impacted the company yesterday with its second day of strikes this month. As a result 118 flights were cancelled, but all passengers eventually reached their destinations by rerouting or rescheduling.

Iberia Pilots, under the SEPLA union, have called for two more days of strikes next month, on January 9 and 11, demanding that the airline ceases its plans for creating a new “Low Salary, not Low Cost airline”, called Iberia Express.

Last week, Iberia advertised for A320 type rated pilots, ICAO Level 4 language proficiency and recent flight time, but no other requirements where specified. The company claims that it has received more than 1500 applications.

Two Vueling Airlines Airbus A320s have entered the Iberia hangars in order to be repainted onto the Iberia Express livery. Tthe company may start looking for Vueling pilots to fly the new IB Express routes.

British Airways pilots, represented by the BALPA union, visited Madrid on Wednesday to show their support to their IAG colleagues and to inform the striking IB pilots about the way BA pilots will help, as they see this IB Express company as a threat to their contracts, by outsourcing their European flights to this new company, or to newly-acquired BMI. Finally, reportedly the BA pilots told the IB pilots, that Willy Walsh had stated that he can resist all of the strikes by the IB pilots, thanks to the Spanish legislation, which mandates minimum services to be provided by the airlines.

According to the unions, BALPA will soon be joining SEPLA in its efforts against the outsourcing of the IAGs jobs and routes.

Copyright Photo: Ariel Shocron.

Iberia Slide Show: CLICK HERE

United Airlines’ mechanics ratify the new contract

United Airlines (Chicago), now the largest airline in the world, announced its mechanics, represented by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) ratified a new labor agreement with the company.

The new agreement covers approximately 5,500 United mechanics. The company and the IBT will soon commence negotiations for a joint collective bargaining agreement for mechanics at both the United and Continental subsidiaries. Continental mechanics represented by the IBT ratified their collective bargaining agreement in November of 2010.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck.

United Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Piedmont Airlines to cut 299 positions at LaGuardia

Piedmont Airlines (2nd) (US Airways Express) (Salisbury) is playing to eliminate 299 positions at New York (LaGuardia) to the recently approved slot swap with Delta Air Lines. Delta is building up a new hub at LGA while US is downsizing at LGA and concentrating on Washington (Reagan National).

299 customer service agents and fleet service workers will lose their jobs in two stages: on March 25 and on July 11, 2012 according to this report by The Street.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum. Please click on the photo for additional details.

US Airways-Piedmont Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Delta to end Washington Reagan National-Jackson, MS service

Delta Air Lines (Atlanta) is ending Washington (Reagan National)-Jackson, Mississippi service on March 2, 2012. The move is part of its swap deal with US Airways and DL is reducing its presence at DCA and building up at LGA. The route was operated by Atlantic Southeast Airlines (soon ExpressJet Airlines) as a Delta Connection flight.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Air China adjusts its Paris schedule

Air China (Beijing) on March 10, 2012 will resume nonstop Shanghai-Paris (CDG) service (flights CA 833/834). The existing Shanghai-Beijing-Paris (CDG) route will revert to just Beijing-Paris (CDG) nonstop service. Boeing 777-300 ER aircraft will now be used on both routes to replace the original Airbus A340-300s on the route.

Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord.

US Airways’ pilots express concern following the publishing of FAA’s new rest rules

The US Airline Pilots Association (USAPA), representing the pilots of US Airways, expresses concerns over the new FAA Flight and Duty Time rule addressing pilot crew rest. The new rule is the result of efforts to address pilot fatigue, brought to light primarily as a result of the fatal accident of Colgan Air Flight 3407 in Buffalo, NY that occurred in May 2009.

USAPA welcomes the publication of the long overdue rest rule, and acknowledges that positive steps were taken to mitigate fatigue in Wednesday’s final ruling.

However, USAPA believes some areas of the rule are in conflict with the stated goal of the improving passenger safety.

In response to the release of the new rest rules, USAPA President Captain Mike Cleary stated, “The new rule demonstrates troubling inconsistencies in its application to cargo operations and, therefore, fails to meet the FAA’s stated goal of One Level of Safety. Congress directed the FAA to create new science-based flight and duty rules to appropriately establish one level of aviation safety to protect the public. Under intense pressure from the cargo industry lobby, the FAA has failed to carry out this basic congressional mandate. Pilots work in a complex environment where a poor decision due to fatigue of one flight crew can magnify and affect the lives of many. The final rule exempts cargo carriers from adhering to the flight and duty regulations, allowing them to opt out of the new rule.” President Cleary continued, “USAPA strongly supports One Level of Safety – what’s safe for one pilot is safe for all, and these new rules fail to incorporate that commitment.”

All pilots are subject to the same physiological needs regardless of the type of air carrier operations. The new rule fails to acknowledge that basic fact by exempting certain segments of air transport. Added Captain Cleary, “Fatigue is fatigue, regardless of whether you’re carrying passengers or cargo. USAPA believes that, in the largely adversarial work environment that many are faced with today, strict government regulation must be in place to protect against potential abuses. Faced with the many potential challenges in round-the-clock air transport operations, a pilot must have the protections of strong Flight and Duty Time regulations and be free to remove him or herself from a flight due to fatigue without fear of recrimination.”

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

Kyrgyzstan Tupolev T-134A-3 EX-020 crashes in Osh, 31 injured

Kyrgyzstan Air Company (formerly Altun Air) (Bishkek) Tupolev Tu-134A-3 EX-020 (msn 61042) crashed today in Osh, Kyrgystan. The airliner was operating flight QH 3 from Bishkek to Osh with 73 passengers and six crew on board. The airliner made a hard landing, broke its wing, overturned and caught fire in heavy fog. 31 people were injured. 17 were hospitalized.

According to this report by the AP, rescuers quickly extinguished the fire and evacuated 82 passengers and six crew members.

The airline was founded in April 2001 as Altyn Air and started operations in 2001. It was rebranded as Kyrgyzstan Air Company on July 28, 2006 after taking over national carrier Kyrgyzstan Airlines.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Air Vallee wet leases this McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 from Medallion Air, will open two new routes from Parma

Air Vallee (Rimini) has wet leased this McDonnell Douglas DC-9-83 (MD-83) registered as YR-HBE (msn 49396) from Medallion Air. Medallion Air formerly operated this airliner for Trawel Fly.

Pictured at Parma on December 26, the company has announced two new routes from Parma.

Air Vallee will operate daily service to Catania starting on January 14, 2012. Air Vallèe also announced Air its intention to launch a route from Parma to Bucharest starting on March 31, 2012.

Copyright Photo: Marco Finelli.

Tor Air loses its Swedish AOC and shuts down

Tor Air (Gothenburg) lost its Air Operators Certificate (AOC) on December 20 and has suspended charter operations. The company has vowed to reapply for a new AOC.

Read the full story from Travel Weekly: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Fred Seggie. Please click on the photo for additional information.

Tor Air Slide Show: CLICK HERE

ANA to add “787” on the forward fuselage for all future Dreamliner deliveries

ANA (All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) has unveiled the design of its third Boeing 787 Dreamliner. The number “787” will be painted in a large bold blue font on the forward fuselage for all further 787 deliveries starting with its third Dreamliner onwards during its FY 2012. The first two Dreamliners were painted in a special livery to celebrate the launch of 787 operations. ANA is the launch customer for the new type.

Images: ANA.

Tiara Air Aruba gets ready to take delivery of its first Boeing 737-300

Tiara Air Aruba (Aruba) is getting ready to take delivery of its first Boeing 737-300. This Boeing 737-322 now registered as N189AQ (msn 24249) will be handed over to the island carrier in January 2012 as P4-TIE. The carrier adopted this new livery in 2011 to promote the island nation.

N189AQ is pictured at Opa-locka Airport near Miami after repainting.

Copyright Photo: Robert Collazo.

Tentative transition agreement reached for AirTran and Southwest flight attendants

The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA), representing 2,400 Flight Attendants at AirTran Airways (Orlando), announced a Seniority Integration and Transition Agreement with Southwest Airlines (Dallas), AirTran Airways and Transport Workers Union Local 556, which represents Southwest Flight Attendants.

The agreement outlines the full integration of AirTran Flight Attendants into Southwest as the two airlines merge. The agreement will be sent to Flight Attendants at both carriers for ratification.

AFA’s seniority integration policy promotes unity and protects a Flight Attendant’s years of service. This is the ideal as we recognize the contributions all Flight Attendants make to our careers. But, in merger such as this one between Southwest and Air Tran where Flight Attendants will not be represented by AFA once the merger integration is concluded, AFA has successfully lobbied for seniority protection under the law. Earlier this month AFA won a case before the federal court of appeals that confirms a Flight Attendants’ right to a fair and equitable process for seniority integration.

Air Tran AFA members will now decide whether to approve the tentative transition agreement that includes a seniority integration process or go to arbitration on the issue of seniority integration.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck. Please click on the photo for additional information.

What is the future of Air Zimbabwe?

Air Zimbabwe’s (Harare) future hangs in the balance. Many are calling for the debt-ridden national carrier to be declared bankrupt.

This pictured Boeing 767-200 was impounded at London (Gatwick) on December 12 due to the $1.2 million owed to American General Supplies. The long-range airliner has now been freed after the debt was paid and it arrived at Harare yesterday (December 25).

Flights to Johannesburg were suspended on December 16. The flights were suspended due to threats by ground handling company, Bid Air Services, to seize Air Zimbabwe aircraft due to unpaid $500,000 in service bills.

Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best.

ANA delays further 787 introductions, will add Dreamliner service to Seattle/Tacoma and San Jose

ANA (All Nippon Airways) (Tokyo) has announced a delay in start-up dates for Boeing 787 Dreamliner service to Beijing and Frankfurt due to “productivity reason”.

Tokyo (Haneda)-Beijing will be delayed from December to January 14, 2012 and Haneda-Frankfurt from January 21 to January 31.

In addition, ANA has announced new 787 service to both Seattle/Tacoma and San Jose, CA will start sometime after April 1, 2012 depending on delivery schedules.

Copyright Photos: Michael B. Ing. The special mood lighting on ANA’s 787 JA802A is dramatically displayed in these photos.


Saudi Arabia to permit foreign airlines to operate domestic flights

Saudi Arabia has decided to permit foreign airlines to operate domestic flights in the Kingdom according to this article by Kuwait Times.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord.

Saudi Arabian Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Sean Menke attempts to turn around Pinnacle

Pinnacle Airlines Corporation (Memphis) hired Sean Menke in July as its new chief executive officer (CEO). Menke, formerly the CEO of Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver), faces some tough decisions — cut the carrier’s costs, cut a deal for more cash from Delta Air Lines and possibly move to larger aircraft according to this article by The Commercial Appeal of Memphis.

PAC is the holding company of Pinnacle Airlines, Mesaba Airlines and Colgan Air (2nd).

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.


Warmest holiday wishes to all of our loyal readers and friends

Copyright Photo: Richard Vandervord. Click on the photo for additional details.

AirAsia X prepares to drop four destinations

AirAsia X (Kuala Lumpur) has informed the Ministry of Transport on its intention to drop all services to Paris, London, Mumbai and Delhi in February according to this article by Business Times.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Guillaume Besnard. Please click on the photo for additional information.

AirAsia X Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Hong Kong Airlines prepares to accept its first Airbus A320

Hong Kong Airlines (Hong Kong) in January will take delivery of its first Airbus A320. The carrier is adding a fleet of A320s in 2012. The first is pictured at Hamburg.

Copyright Photo: Gerd Beilfuss. Please click on the photo for additional details.

SriLankan Airlines restores service to Zurich

SriLankan Airlines (Colombo) today (December 23) restored twice-weekly service to Zurich, Switzerland. The flag carrier served ZRH from 1980 through 2005.

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton.

SriLankan Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Precision Air signs contract for four ATR 42-600s and one ATR 72-600

Precision Air Services (Dar es Salaam) and ATR on December 21, 2011 announced the signing of a firm contract for the purchase of four ATR 42-600s and one ATR 72-600 aircraft. The deal is valued at US $98 million.

Delivery of the 50-seat ATR 42-600s will start in late 2012. The ATR 72-600 will be delivered in 2014.

With this acquisition, Precision Air Services will bring its fleet of ATRs up to 14 aircraft, thus becoming the largest operator of ATR aircraft in Africa. The current fleet of ATRs includes five ATR 72-500s, two ATR 42-500s and two ATR 42-300s.

Copyright Photo: Robbie Shaw. Please click on the photo for additional details.

Dagestan Airlines is grounded

Dagestan Airlines (Makhachkala, Dagestan, Russia) at midnight on December 16, 2011 the state airline lost its AOC and it was grounded due to excessive debts even though it was a state-owned carrier of Dagestan. At the time of the grounding, the airline was operating three Tupolev Tu-154Ms, a single Tu-154B-2s, two Tu-134Bs, an Antonov An-24RV and Mil Mi-8 and Mi-8MTV helicopters.

Read the full report from Vestnik: CLICK HERE

The company had also been operating as South East Airlines.

The Russian government intends to ground all Tupolev Tu-154s in the next two years. The aging fleet will be retired and replaced.

Copyright Photo: OSDU. Please click on the photo for the full details.

Condor Flugdienst starts twice-weekly flights to San Juan

Condor Flugdienst (Frankfurt) on December 21 commenced twice-weekly service between its Frankfurt base and San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Copyright Photo: Arnd Wolf.

Condor Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Airberlin to add Dusseldorf-Las Vegas flights

Airberlin (airberlin.com) (Berlin) is expanding its flights to North America and will fly nonstop from Düsseldorf to Las Vegas twice a week as of summer 2012. With the new destination, Airberlin passengers can now fly to a total of seven destinations in North America (New York, Miami, Fort Myers, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas and Vancouver).

The first flight will take off from Düsseldorf on May 10, 2012. The flight will be serviced on Thursdays and Sundays using an Airbus A330. The departure time in Düsseldorf is 13:55, landing in Las Vegas at 16:15. The return flight to Düsseldorf will arrive at 13:30.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck.

Airberlin Slide Show: CLICK HERE

FedEx pilots respond to release of pilot fatigue rule

FedEx Express’ (Memphis) pilots have officially issued this response to the FAA’s final regulations concerning pilot fatigue:

“The FedEx Master Executive Council (MEC), the FedEx branch of the Air Line Pilots Association, International (ALPA), issued the following press release concerning the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) final regulations regarding airline pilot flight- and duty-time limitations and minimum rest requirements:

The release yesterday of the Federal Aviation Administration’s long-awaited science-based fatigue rule for flight and duty time was a political failure. The rule completely ignores the safety of cargo pilots and instead lets operators choose to ignore the safety improvements that will benefit pilots carrying passengers.

Fatigue affects all pilots. Over the first century of powered flight, countless accidents trace pilot fatigue as a contributing factor. “It is outrageous that the new rule does not include cargo. Cargo aircraft operate into the same airspace, into the same crowded airports surrounded by millions of homes and face the same challenges every other professional aviator encounters on a 24-hour basis,” said FedEx MEC Chairman Scott Stratton.

An NTSB spokesman summed it up well: “A tired pilot is a tired pilot, whether there are 10 paying customers on board or 100, whether the payload is passengers or pallets.” As the FAA said in its draft, “Fatigue threatens aviation safety because it increases the risk of pilot error that could lead to an accident.” This is particularly a concern for crews that fly “on the back side of the clock.” Ironically, the back side of the clock is exactly where the majority of cargo pilots find themselves operating aircraft.

The families of the pilots and passengers who perished in the Colgan Air Flight 3407 operating as Continental Connection accident brought the issue of pilot fatigue to the forefront. Initially, Congress and the FAA acted to address pilot fatigue. However, cargo carrier lobbyists were able to use a protracted backroom process to convince federal policy-makers that somehow cargo pilots and their families were less worthy of fatigue protection. The FedEx MEC is outraged at the casual dismissal of cargo pilots and their families. Industry commenters asserted that, “while a passenger-operation accident can result in numerous fatalities, an all-cargo accident would consist primarily of property damage.” The FAA apparently placed some value on this absurd statement and coldly used it to justify the subordination of cargo families. “This nonsense indicates the character of the political process that produced this rule,” said Captain Stratton. “It is clear that special interest money and politics won over safety today, but we will not sit idly by and allow another 50 years of ambivalence to take hold. Our work to achieve a single level of safety as envisioned by the founding members of the Air Line Pilots Association, International shall continue. There can be no “Scheduling with Safety” without “One Level of Safety.”

Copyright Photo: Nick Dean.

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