Monthly Archives: October 2011

JetBlue has another “meltdown in a snowstorm” in Hartford

JetBlue Airways (New York) did not have a good public relations day on Saturday (as many other airlines also struggled against the weather) as a freak late October snowstorm hit the Northeast, especially around the northern New Jersey and central Connecticut area. A Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood-Newark Airbus A320 flight 504, after holding to land at EWR, diverted to Bradford International Airport (BDL) near Hartford, CT (why Hartford?), which was dealing with upwards of a foot of snow at the time.

When the diverted flight landed, the cockpit crew was unable to secure a gate to disembark the passengers or get help from its own company and pleaded for help from airport and the ATC tower. The passengers ending up being stuck in the plane (without workable toilets, water or food) for a reported eight hours. It is now a PR nightmare for JetBlue which has not yet issued a statement.

JetBlue had previously dealt with its famous (or infamous) JFK snowstorm and vowed to never have this winter snowstorm problem again.

Worse yet, there is now a federal mandate that prohibits just this type of problem.

Read the full story from gothamist: CLICK HERE

Aerolineas Argentinas prepares to add two former Airberlin Boeing 737-800s

Aerolineas Argentinas (Buenos Aires) is adding a new type to the fleet. The company is adding two former Airberlin Boeing 737-800s.

Copyright Photo: Malcolm Nason. Please click on the photo for the full story.

Aerolineas Argentinas Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Asiana Airlines Cargo’s two missing crew members bodies located

Asiana Airlines’ (Seoul) two missing crew members from the crashed cargo flight of July 28, 2011 have been located. The bodies have been located near Jeju Island. The crash is still under investigation according to The Korean Times.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Asiana Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Karl Cornil.

Qatar Airways to fly for an Iranian airline in Iran

Qatar Airways (Doha) is planning to operate its aircraft for an unnamed Iranian carrier on internal domestic flights in Iran according to a report by ISNA and The Peninsula. This is the first time a foreign carrier has been permitted to fly on domestic routes in Iran. There is a current aircraft and parts shortage in Iran due to the embargo.

Read the full report by The Peninsula: CLICK HERE

Qatar Airways Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Air Tanzania set to resume operations tomorrow

Air Tanzania (2nd) (Dar es Salaam) is preparing to relaunch domestic operations tomorrow (November 1) to Kigoma and Tabora with a single Bombardier DHC-8-300 according to this report by eTN. Previously the flag carrier suspended operations on December 8, 2008 due to financial problems.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

 

Air France expects to cancel around 15% of its flights today due a cabin staff strike

Air France (Paris) expects to cancel around 15 percent of its flights due to a strike by its cabin staff (flight attendants).

Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE

Air France Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Christian Volpati.

US Airways posts a third quarter net profit of $95 million

US Airways (Phoenix) reported its third quarter 2011 financial results. The Company reported a net profit excluding special items for the third quarter 2011 of $95 million, or $0.51 per diluted share. This compares with the third quarter 2010 net profit excluding special items of $243 million, or $1.23 per diluted share. On a GAAP basis, the Company reported a net profit for the third quarter 2011 of $76 million, or $0.41 per diluted share. This compares with the third quarter 2010 net profit of $240 million, or $1.22 per diluted share.

The company took delivery of three of its 12 A321 aircraft deliveries scheduled for 2011. The Company expects to take delivery of the remaining nine A321 aircraft in the fourth quarter 2011 and an additional 12 A320 family aircraft in 2012. These 24 aircraft will be used to replace legacy Boeing 737-300/400 aircraft.

US Airways Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

QANTAS Airways resumes operations after a court ruling

QANTAS Airways (Sydney) after grounding its entire mainline fleet this past weekend in a bold tactic to force the Australian government to intervene in the worst labor dispute in a decade according to this report by Reuters.

The flag carrier took the drastic step to ground all mainline flights on Saturday, stranding 70,000 passengers.

Australia’s labor tribunal ordered the airline to resume operations and banned trade unions from staging more strikes while negotiations continued.

Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE

QANTAS issued the following statement:

“QANTAS can confirm that all domestic and international services have resumed from mid-afternoon on Monday October 31 (Sydney time). We are deeply sorry for the inconvenience and stress our customers have faced over the past days and months. Industrial action is now over, you can again book QANTAS flights with confidence.”

QANTAS Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: John Adlard.

Air China completes its first biofuel demonstration flight

Air China (Beijing), in partnership with Boeing, Honeywell UOP, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), PetroChina and Pratt & Whitney, on October 28 completed a demonstration flight using a sustainable biofuel derived from biomass grown in China.

Air China’s Boeing 747-400 aircraft, powered by Pratt & Whitney PW4000 94-inch engines, completed approximately a one hour flight. No modifications to the aircraft or engine were required for the biofuel, which is a “drop-in” replacement for petroleum-based fuel.

The fuel source for this test flight is derived from the jatropha plant supplied by PetroChina. With the technology of UOP, the crude oil of jatropha could be transformed into aviation biofuel. In order to meet the standard of GB6537 and ASTM D7566-11 simultaneously, China Aviation Oil mixed aviation biofuel with traditional aviation kerosene by a proportion of 50:50.

According to the airline, “the quality of aviation biofuel may meet or even surpass the current aviation oil standard. Aviation biofuel can work properly after being directly mixed with traditional fossil-fuel, neither aircraft nor engine needs to be refit, and neither storage nor transportation facility needs to be built or rebuilt. At present, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of the US has ratified the standard of ASTM D7566-11. Therefore, any mixed aviation biofuel according to this standard can be used on business flights immediately. With such advantage, aviation biofuel may replace traditional fossil-fuel. The great pressure brought by the oil shortage would be reduced if aviation biofuel was industrialized.”

Presently, the second-generation biofuels are mainly derived from jatropha, camelina, salt plant and microalgae. These non-food sources do not compete with food crops for land or water. Also, many aspects should be taken into account in the process of aviation biofuel development, such as biodiversity protection, regional economic development promotion and more employment opportunities. Therefore, many industries include carriers and energy suppliers, and aircraft and engine manufacturers are working together now to accelerate the development and industrialization of sustainable aviation biofuel.

Photo: Air China.

Air China Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Is BMI Regional the next new Scottish-theme airline?

BMI Regional’s (Aberdeen) parent, Lufthansa AG, announced on October 28, 2011 that it was in advanced negotiations to sell the airline to a UK-based investor group by the end of 2011. The proposed sale includes all of the assets including the aircraft, route network and staff.

The new investor group plans to rebrand the airline with a Scottish name and marketing the rebranded airline as “Scotland’s national airline”.

BMI Regional currently operates Embraer regional jet aircraft from six British bases including Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Read the full report from the BBC: CLICK HERE

BMI Regional Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton. Please click on the photo for the full background on the airline.