Thursday, 30 September 2021

American Airlines returns to Sydney

AMERICAN AIRLINES B777-323 N726AN (MSN 31550)     File Photo


American Airlines is headed back to Sydney, with the Oneworld member and Qantas partner now scheduling the return of its Los Angeles-Sydney route from early January 2022.

This will come four months after the US carrier suspended the long-standing flights at the end of August 2021 "due to the ongoing travel restrictions" sparked by Covid-19, an American Airlines spokesman said.

But with the worst of those days behind us, American Airlines has set a course back onto the trans-Pacific corridor. The daily flight, AA73, will depart LA on the 4th January 2022 at 22.50, arriving in Sydney on the 6th January at 07.00. The return leg from Sydney, AA72, departs on the 6th January at 09.55 arriving back in LA at 06.00 on the same day.

American's Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner will be assigned to the 14-15 hour trek, with plenty of variety for how you fly: from 30 lie-flat business class berths to 21 premium economy recliners and 234 economy seats, 36 of which have extra legroom.

United Airlines has continued flying its Boeing 787s between Sydney and Los Angeles throughout the pandemic, Delta Air Lines' Airbus A350 also remains a regular fixture between the two cities.

Qantas will resume daily Sydney-Los Angeles and Melbourne-Los Angeles flights from the 18th December. 

Singapore, London and Los Angeles all headline the airline's overseas return from December, with daily flights – mostly on the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner – and Qantas is planning to reopen its lounges at those destinations.

Jetsetters can also look forward to taking off for Vancouver, Tokyo, Fiji and Honolulu in the days following. Hong Kong, San Francisco and Dallas/Forth Worth are back on the map from the week commencing the 14th February 2022 – Qantas has decided to permanently close its popular Hong Kong lounge. 





Story sourced from here

Wednesday, 29 September 2021

United Airlines fined for tarmac delay's violation.

UNITED B737-924 N68807 (MSN 42819)      File Photo

The US Department of Transportation (DoT) has fined United Airlines US $1.9 million (AUS $2.6 million) for violating tarmac delay laws. According to the government department, it is “the largest fine issued” in history for tarmac delays. The investigation was run by the Department’s Office of Aviation Consumer Protection (OACP) and found the Chicago-based carrier violated the laws on twenty-five flights from 2015.

Under DOT laws, large airlines are prohibited from allowing domestic flights to remain on the tarmac longer than three hours, and international flights for more than four hours. According to the consent order, United failed to adhere to the contingency plans for lengthy delays for 20 domestic flights and five international flights. All aircraft remained on the tarmac for longer than the permitted time and the DOT said the delays impacted a total of 3,218 passengers.

For any exempted delays – such as safety, security or air traffic control reasons – airlines are required to provide food and water for passengers.

“The carrier also failed to have sufficient resources to implement its contingency plan for lengthy tarmac delays,” said the DOT. The consent order was served on 24 September, and United Airlines said they are “committed to full compliance”.

“While United enters freely into this settlement with the Department, it does not agree with the Department’s description of the flights in this order,” the carrier said.

“United believes there is also a tension between the rules and operational decisions to position flights to take advantage of windows of opportunity to get the passengers to their ultimate destination.”

The airline said the consent order covers over five years, and only 25 of almost 8 million flights have occurred during the time of the warranted enforced action.

“With regard to some of the flights in this order, United respectfully disagrees with the Department that enforcement action is warranted,” United said.

The rule prohibiting long tarmac delays on domestic flights was enforced in 2010, and a year later the law expanded to include international flights at US airports. The last significant fine was served to American Airlines (US$1 million) and Delta Air Lines (US$750,000) in late 2019 for also violating long tarmac delay rules.

Despite the carrier’s response, the OACP said it “carefully considered” the facts and concluded the airline was responsible for violating the laws.

US$950,000 of the penalty is required to be paid in 30 days after the order and US$750,000 will be credited to United for passenger compensation.

The last US$200,000 will be credited to United for its costs in developing a “diversion management tool” for the improvement of its contingency plan.



Story sourced from here

Tuesday, 28 September 2021

Unattended child attempts to open emergency exit on Citilink flight.

A Citilink plane heading from Jakarta (CGK/WIII) to Batam (BTH/WIDD) had to make an emergency landing yesterday after an unattended child attempted to open an emergency exit mid-flight. The plane made the unscheduled stop in Palembang’s Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Airport (PLM/WIPP) at 4:05pm after the flight’s captain decided to take the precautionary measure following the incident.


According to Citilink, the child was not under the supervision of their parents when they detached the safety cover to the latch of an emergency exit door.

Thankfully, the door did not open mid-flight.

“The cabin crew immediately sought an explanation from the child’s parents. The parents were also required to make a statement to the authorities at Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II,” Citilink Corporate Secretary and CSR VP Diah Suryani said in a statement published yesterday. No sanctions have been announced for the parents thus far.

Under current COVID-19 protocols, children under the age of 12 are not permitted to travel by air. Diah said the child in this incident had received official dispensation to travel by the COVID-19 Task Force at Soekarno-Hatta Airport.

The plane later took off from Palembang at 7.08pm and touched down in Batam at 7:52pm, 52 minutes later than it was scheduled to land.



Below statement is from Citilink

Flight QG944, Jakarta-Batam route made an emergency landing at Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II International Airport, Palembang on September 27, 2021 at 16:05 WIB. 
The pilot decided to make an emergency landing because a child passenger was allegedly about to open the emergency door while the plane was in the air. VP Corporate Secretary & CSR of PT Citilink Indonesia, Diah Suryani explained, the incident was triggered by children who were in seat row 11 on flight QG944 removing the emergency door lever protective cover or emergency exit cover handle. At the time of the incident, the children's passengers were out of the supervision of their parents.

Knowing the incident, Citilink cabin crew in charge of taking action in accordance with procedure immediately informed the incident to the Captain. Furthermore, the Captain decided to divert the flight to the nearest airport to technically check the condition of the aircraft and ensure the aircraft was in safe condition, in order to ensure the safety and security of the flight.

"In addition, the cabin crew immediately requested information to the child's parents. The child's parents were also questioned by the authorities when landing at Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Airport, Palembang," Diah said in a written statement.


Aircraft Information:
Airline: Citilink
Code: QG/CTV
Aircraft: Airbus A320-214
Registration: PK-GLY
Serial Number: 05830
First Flew: October 2013

Saturday, 25 September 2021

As international flights resume, could Queensland be left behind?

Queenslanders could remain grounded while residents of other states head overseas in December.

Australia's international borders are set to reopen in December, but Queenslanders could remain grounded as overseas flights take to the skies. State Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk this week pushed back on the nationally-agreed plan to unlock Queensland's state borders and restart international travel once the country reaches the 80% 'double-jab' vaccination milestone.

Speaking with media at a press conference, Palaszczuk claimed the national plan had not been finalised, with further modelling by the expert Doherty Institute still to be shared with state and territory leaders tabled before the next national cabinet meeting.

"The Doherty modelling has not been released publicly... but 80% will mean different things to different states," she said.

She also cast doubt on whether Queenslanders might be able to travel overseas before the end of the year, following a promise by federal Tourism Minister Dan Tehan that the country's international borders would be unlocked by Christmas.

"We have to stick to the national plan that will see our international border open up – at this rate by Christmas at the latest," Tehan told the National Press Club on Wednesday.

"People will be able to freely travel outside of Australia, with no restrictions or no limitation... obviously, it will be dependent on the requirements that are put in place of the countries that they are travelling with."

Vaccine passports, home quarantine

Tehan confirmed that Australia is in negotiations with several countries to establish quarantine-free "travel bubbles", alongside ongoing trials of home quarantine for travellers returning from other destinations, while the government's 'vaccination passport' QR code system has been sent to Australia's overseas embassies for compatibility checks with other country's systems. "What we've seen so far and all the reports back, is that the QR code system – which has obviously been modelled on the international aviation organisation's model of what they think is needed in a QR code – seems to be interoperable with most of the countries that we've been dealing with,” he said.

"So that when those international borders open, hopefully at the latest by Christmas, that Australians will be able to travel with a QR code link to their passport which will be able to show a proof of vaccination."

Qantas intends to resume international flights from December 18. While most of the first wave of flights spear out from Sydney and Melbourne, the schedule lists Brisbane-Singapore and Brisbane-Los Angeles from December 19, 2021, with Brisbane-Noumea from January 8, 2022 and Brisbane-San Francisco from February 14, 2022.

Fiji Airways also plans to relaunch flights to Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane by December 1 as the Pacific nation gears up for the return of international tourists, while Hawaiian Airlines is also eyeing a return to Sydney and Brisbane from mid-December.

Brisbane flyers left behind?

However, as previously reported, Qantas has said it's prepared to leave Brisbane and Perth off its overseas reboot if Queensland and similarly recalcitrant Western Australia insist on keeping their states closed after reaching the 80% vaccination threshold.

"It is a national plan, and it's our view... we should open up together," Qantas chief customer officer Stephanie Tully told a Tourism Australia webinar earlier this month.

"But if not, we can plan for scenarios that Sydney and Melbourne can open up," she said, adding that "it's not ideal", but the airline needed to get moving again.

"We're excited to see that Australians want to travel. We think as soon as borders open up there will be large influx of demand."

WA Premier Mark McGowan recently said the state's 'hard border' would likely come down in "February, March or April – I suspect it will be one of those months."

This could see Qantas' flagship Perth-London route temporarily rerouted to fly to London via Darwin should WA remain closed.

The airline says it "is investigating using Darwin as a transit point, which has been Qantas' main entry for repatriation flights, as an alternative (or in addition) to its existing Perth hub given conservative border policies in Western Australia."

Qantas expects non-stop flights between Australia and London will be even more popular in the post-Covid era.

"I think it would be a terrible shame, if when we got to Christmas, from NSW you could visit your relatives in London, but can't visit your relatives in Perth," Qantas CEO Alan Joyce has said.





Story By David Flynn, and sourced from here
As international flights resume, could Queensland be left behind? - Executive Traveller


Friday, 24 September 2021

C-17 Globemaster practice flypast

BRISBANE CITY



Yesterday a Boeing C-17A Globemaster III strategic aircraft from RAAF Base Amberley conducted several low level rehearsal fly-past's over Brisbane city in preparation for this year’s Riverfire which is held on Saturday the 25th September. The flypast took place from 12.06pm to 12.18pm.

Around 2.30pm Helicopters from the School of Army Aviation in Oakey also conducted a low level rehearsal along the Brisbane River in the CBD in preparation for Riverfire, unfortunately commitments prevented me from attending this rehearsal.

The C-17A Globemaster III flew over Mt Coot-tha and Suncorp Stadium then headed south along the river at South Bank to the Goodwill Bridge before repositioning to fly east along the Kangaroo Point cliffs toward the Storey Bridge.
There were two fly-past's, one flown at 1000 feet and then the second flown at a height not below 300 feet.

First flight was on the 07/11/2006
28/11/2006 accepted by the RAAF in California USA.
04/12/2006 arrived in Canberra Australia from the USA.
In service with the 36 Sqn RAAF.



RAAF BOEING C-17A GLOBEMASTER III
A41-206 (MSN 06-0206)
























What is Riverfire
Riverfire is one of Australia's leading international arts festivals, and is held each September in Brisbane. Its presence dominates the city for three weeks in September and its line-up of classical and contemporary music, theatre, dance, comedy, opera, circus and major public events such as Riverfire attracts an audience of around one million people every year.
The close of the festival is celebrated by a huge fireworks display with fireworks coming from barges in the river and from the roof of many buildings around the city and of course the RAAF aircraft displays

Thursday, 23 September 2021

Virgin Galactic flights on sale for $600,000

It’s the hottest ticket money can buy – well, a lot of money. 
Flights to space with Virgin Galactic have finally opened up to sales again.

Keen stargazers – wealthy, keen stargazers – will be able to snap up $614,000 tickets on future Virgin Galactic space flights, after the company resumed selling tickets following a six-year hiatus. Shares of Virgin Galactic rose almost 6 per cent higher on Friday after the ticket sale announcement, ending the trading day at $US33.37 ($A45.42).

Sales will initially open to “early hand-raisers” who have already expressed interest in paying for a flight, the company said, and another list will then be created for new reservations. The company said it will sell single seats, package deals and a “full-flight buyout”. It’s unclear precisely how each tier will be priced, but the starting price is $US450,000, or $A614,000.

Virgin Galactic ticket sales have been closed since the fatal 2014 crash of a test flight.

But a huge number of people are already on the waiting list for their own trip to space, including Melbourne man Scott Copeland, who scored his ticket through a Virgin Australia competition in 2014. The company’s billionaire founder Sir Richard Branson promised to fly to space himself before opening up commercial operations, and last month, he made the trip.

Branson’s flight marked the first time a billionaire space pioneer rode to the atmosphere on his own company’s rocket, stealing the thunder from Amazon founder Jeff Bezos who rode to space just a week later. “Leveraging the surge in consumer interest following the Unity 22 flight, we are excited to announce the reopening of sales effective today, beginning with our Spacefarer community,” Virgin Galactic chief executive officer Michael Colglazier said on Thursday evening in a statement.

“As we endeavour to bring the wonder of space to a broad global population, we are delighted to open the door to an entirely new industry and consumer experience,” he added.

Virgin Galactic announced the resumption of ticket sales alongside its second-quarter earnings, which showed it posted an adjusted EBITDA loss of $US56 million, slightly wider than the $US55.9 million loss in the prior quarter. The company reported revenue of $571,000 for the quarter, enough to cover a seat on one of its future spaceflights.

Its revenue largely came from scientific research experiments, the company said.

The company added that it’s targeting late September for its next test flight, which will carry members of the Italian air force and is expected to generate revenue. Upon the completion of that flight, the company expects to undergo an “enhancement period” before launching a final test flight. After that, Virgin Galactic will begin passenger flights. Mr Colglazier said on a conference call with investors that the enhancement period will likely run into mid-2022, pushing back the start of passenger operations to the second half of next year.




Story sourced from here
Virgin Galactic flights on sale for $600k | news.com.au — Australia’s leading news site

Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Qantas, Jetstar announce $20 flight sale as states set to reopen

As NSW and Victoria prepare to reopen, Jetstar and Qantas have dropped a slab of fares to get people flying again.
                                                                            File Photo

As vaccine uptake climbs across Australia, fully-vaccinated residents in both Victoria and NSW are hoping for eased border restrictions between the two states in the coming months.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced on Sunday that border measures would be scaled back for the double-jabbed on the 5th of November. Now Qantas and sister airline Jetstar have launched sale fares they promise are at rock bottom.

A Jetstar 24-hour flash sale. which began at 5pm on Monday, saw fares from $20 one-way for flights from Melbourne Tullamarine to Sydney, Newcastle and Byron Bay, and from Melbourne Avalon to Sydney.

“As Victoria and NSW approach the 80 per cent double vaccination target, and travel between the two states looks set to reopen, we know there will be many people wanting to plan a well-earned holiday or visit loved ones,” Jetstar Group chief executive officer Gareth Evans said in a statement.

“With Jetstar fares as low as $20, we expected those seats to be snapped up quickly, helping to revive the tourism industry and support local businesses, as well as get more of our people back to work.”

Meanwhile, Qantas has launched a five-day sale featuring all-inclusive fares from $99 one-way between Melbourne Tullamarine and Sydney, as well as sale fares across six regional routes between
Victoria and NSW including Sydney to Bendigo and Mildura and Melbourne to Byron and Coffs. Travel periods for the sales will be between November 5 and mid-December 2021, as well as selected dates between January and March 2022 for some Qantas fares

If the Victorian Government’s road map is pushed back, or customers are unable to travel for any reason, they will be able to change the date of their travel but a fare difference may apply.
The Qantas Group’s vaccination reward program includes the option for a $20 travel voucher for fully-vaccinated travellers, which can be used across Jetstar or Qantas flights, including these sale fares.

The airlines will also be adding more flights back into their schedules to meet an expected surge in demand when travel restrictions ease, just in time for Christmas.





Story sourced from here
Qantas, Jetstar: Airlines offer $20 flights as Vic, NSW set to reopen borders | news.com.au — Australia’s leading news site

Sunday, 19 September 2021

Air France makes emergency landing in Beijing


AIR FRANCE A380-861 F-HPJF (MSN 064)

An Air France flight from Beijing-Capital International Airport (PEK/ZBAA) to Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG/LFPG) was forced to return to Beijing to make an emergency landing due to smoke on board the aircraft.
According to the newspaper Beijing Daily, the plane took off from the Beijing Capital International Airport in the early hours of Saturday morning, and soon thereafter, a bang was heard in the area of the tail of the jet, following which black smoke emerged.



According to a passenger a 'bang' was heard at row 52 in the passenger cabin. A passenger in or near the left-hand window seat reported rush of air coming from under his feet, followed by loud noise from the ceiling and the smell of smoke. There was no fire. Initial information suggests there was an air conditioning system failure.

Air France Statement:

"Air France confirms that the crew of flight AF393 on the 18th September 2021 from Beijing airport to Paris-Charles de Gaulle in a Boeing 777 returned to Beijing after 14 minutes due to a technical incident. A failure in the aircraft's pneumatic system led to an overpressure in one of the air-conditioning pipes, which spread residue and dust in the cabin.

The crews are trained and regularly instructed to carry out this procedure in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications and the aircraft's instructions.

The aircraft landed normally in Beijing at 4.03am (local time).

The customers were taken care of by Air France teams and accommodated at the airport. They will be flown back to Paris today on another Boeing 777.

Maintenance work will be carried out on the aircraft concerned before it is returned to service.

Air France recalls that the safety of its crews and customers is its absolute priority and regrets the inconvenience caused by this situation.

No individuals were injured in the incident.
The causes of the incident remain unknown.

Aircraft Information:
Airline: Air France
Code: AF/AFR
Aircraft: Boeing 777-328
Registration: F-GSQD
Serial Number: 32726
First Flew: Sept 2004
Age 17 yrs



Friday, 17 September 2021

ANA Launches auction of old aircraft parts and memorabilia

ALL NIPPON AIRWAYS B787-9 JA873A (MSN 34530)    File Photo

All Nippon Airways (ANA) aircraft parts and memorabilia are going up for sale on a Japanese online auction site later this month. ANA calls the items one-of-a-kind parts and valuable airline goods. Delving through the PR guff, everything from small items like key rings to not so small items like first class suites, are up for bids.

Beginning September 21, SorANAka Yahoo! Auctions Store will start accepting bids. First up is an original ANA international first class mock-up seat and a Boeing 777-300ER window frame.
ANA calls it an “effective use of retired aircraft parts”.

Part of the profit from the auction will be donated to an external charity such as the Japanese Red Cross or Save the Children.

It isn’t the first time All Nippon Airways has monetized aircraft memorabilia. Earlier this year, the airline did a brisk trade flogging off bar carts. Despite weighing over 20 kilograms, ANA reportedly sold 220 surplus carts over a three-month period for around US$1000 each. One buyer described the bar carts as “very convenient and functional.”

“A lot of things can be put in a cart, which people usually see only onboard, and it would look nice by just placing it in a room,” an ANA flight attendant told Japanese media outlet The Mainichi. Alas the ANA bar carts came empty. Last year, Qantas sold 1,000 former Boeing 747 bar carts in two hours. Also priced around US$1000, the Qantas bar carts were thoughtfully filled with 160 miniature wine bottles, two full-size bottles of champagne, and a decent supply of snacks to help soak it all up.

ANA has also sold some interesting gear from retired Boeing 767-300 aircraft. According to The Mainichi, this year ANA has sold four thrust levers priced at about $10,900, four control sticks priced between $6,800 and $7,300, nine cockpit ceiling panels for $2,000 each, and three sets of mock-up passenger seats for between $5,500 and $6,400 each.

All Nippon Airlines has also found success selling inflight food. In March ANA sold over 264,000 economy class inflight meals, making $1.8 million in the process.

“Each time we place the meals on our online market site, they sell out within 45 minutes on average, an ANA spokesperson said at the time. “Some items were gone in five minutes.”


Monetizing airline food is a particularly Asian shtick. Malaysia Airlines, Air Asia, Singapore Airlines, and THAI have all turned to it since the travel downturn. Cash-strapped airlines outside the region haven’t ventured down this road. Quite possibly that’s because the economy meal product on so many western legacy airlines is so awful they’d get laughed off the internet.

Indeed, not many airlines outside the Asia region have turned to these gimmicky style stunts to keep their regular passengers engaged. Gimmicky can be good. You’d have to figure there would be a few punters across the United States happy to shell out cash or points for a seat out of a retired AA aircraft, or perhaps a Delta branded cabin partition.

ANA fanboys and fangirls can find out all about the upcoming auction on the Yahoo Japan website.

Below is from the auction website
As the first installment of the SorANAka Yafuoku store, the company will exhibit products for Boeing 777-300ER aircraft on international aircraft. First Class mock-up (model) seats and window frames for both first and business classes will be accepted from 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, with the end scheduled to end around 9-10 p.m. on Thursday. The bid start amount is 7,730 yen for mockups and 773 yen for window frames. The second series will be exhibited around October, and in addition to mock-up seats for international business class, a model plane of the 747-400 (registration symbol JA8094) and an aircraft identification plate (nameplate) of JA8094 will be prepared. In April, SorANAka opened in Rakuten Ichiba as a new mail-order site that deals with food specialties from all over Japan. They sell ordered gourmet dishes such as miso ramen sets from Hokkaido and izakaya sets from Hakata. Yafuoku will be SorANAka's second store. Ana All Japan Trading co., Ltd. has been operating its own mail order site "ANA STORE/ ANA Shopping A-style" since 2000, mainly targeting members of ANA Mileage Club (AMC), ANA's mileage system. A-style also sells goods such as aircraft parts, but A-style sells multiple in-flight carts and processed parts for a fixed amount. At the SorANAka Yafuoku store, the company aims to increase the number of sales channels by offering a single item such as sheets at auction.






Story sourced from here (with additions)
ANA Launches Auction Of Old Aircraft Parts And Memorabilia - Simple Flying



Thursday, 16 September 2021

Qantas to fly Sydney-Vancouver all year round / Air Canada returns to Sydney

    QANTAS B787-9 VH-ZNF (MSN 36239)


Qantas is upgrading its Sydney-Vancouver flights from a seasonal service to run throughout the year, challenging Air Canada to satisfy pent-up demand for travel once Australia's international borders reopen. The direct twice-weekly flights, which departed Sydney on Wednesdays and Saturdays and Vancouver on Sundays and Thursdays, ran from December to January each year.
In addition to Australians heading for the cosmopolitan harbour city and gateway to the Canadian Rockies, the airline expects plenty of Canucks to be lured down under.

Canada only this month began welcoming back international travellers, who must be fully vaccinated at least 14 days before entering the country with a vaccine recognised by the Canadian government: this includes the AstraZeneca, Moderna and Pfizer jabs being used in Australia, along with North America's single-dose Johnson & Johnson shot.

Qantas is scheduling three flights a week between Sydney and Vancouver from the 18th of December, with a Boeing 787-9 taking on the 15-hour trek.

Air Canada plans to restart its Sydney-Vancouver route on the 17th of December with four Boeing 777 flights per week.

Both Qantas and Air Canada tempt premium travellers with a fully lie-flat bed in business class, where the 1-2-1 seating layout also offers direct access to the aisle.

Ahead of their flight back to Sydney, Qantas' business class travellers and top-tier Qantas Frequent Flyers holding Gold, Platinum and Platinum One status will enjoy access to the Vancouver lounge of Oneworld partner Cathay Pacific.



AIR CANADA B787-9 C-FGDZ (MSN 37173)

As mentioned Air Canada plans to restart Sydney-Vancouver flights from December, with flights now on sale as both Australia and Canada reopen their international borders.

However, as expected, trans-Pacific travel will be restricted to people who have been fully vaccinated – and only "with the Government of Canada-accepted vaccines", the airline notes – although this set includes the AstraZeneca, Moderna and Pfizer jabs being used in Australia.

"As travel restrictions ease across the globe, we are committed to rebuild our international network and continue as a global carrier connecting the world with Canada," said Vic Naughton, General Manager, Australia and New Zealand at Air Canada.

"Our flights from Sydney to Vancouver conveniently connect to our flights across Canada and the U.S. at our Vancouver hub."

Air Canada says its "industry-leading" Clean Care+ bio-safety protocols will give passengers peace of mind both in airport lounges and in the air, and has launched a dedicated online Travel Hub guide to help guests understand their key travel requirements.

The restart timetable for Air Canada's Sydney-Vancouver route sees an initial four flights per week on the airline's long-range Boeing 777-200LR jet, which features spacious Signature Class lie-flat business suites, along with premium economy and economy class seating.

AC34 will depart Sydney on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday.
AC33 will depart Vancouver on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.






Stories sourced from here

Tuesday, 14 September 2021

Four dead after L-410 plane crash-lands in Eastern Siberia

A Let L-410UVP-E20, travelling from Irkutsk Airport (IKT/UIII), Russia to Kazachinskoye Airport (UITK) Russia, was destroyed when it crashed in a forest about 4 km short of the runway near  Kazachinskoye Airport.
Four people have died and five more were injured following the crash-landing which had 14 passengers and 2 crew members.
The crash happened in Russia's Irkutsk Region earlier on Sunday,
The plane crashed on an island in a river from a low altitude in conditions of thick fog according to reports.
The aircraft was owned and operated by Aeroservice, but according to the media, the flight was a combined flight for Aeroservice and SiLA (Siberian Light Aviation).

This is the second crash for SiLa in a matter of months.
Back on the 16th July an Antonov An-28 airplane (RA-28728) flipped over during a forced landing between Kedrovo and Tomsk, Russia. All aboard survived the accident.
A survivor reported that both engines had failed in icing conditions, necessitating a forced landing.


Aircraft Information:
Airline: Aeroservice
Aircraft: Let L-410UVP-E20
Registration: RA-67042
Serial Number: 2916
Engines: 2 General Electric H80-200
First Flew: 2014



Thoughts and prayers are with their families and friends during this difficult time.

Monday, 13 September 2021

Mega airports: The biggest airport for every Continent

For many people, commercial aviation is an industry where size matters. Indeed, you don’t have to be at an airport for very long to see that the (admittedly increasingly rare) sight of an Airbus A380 or Boeing 747 turns more heads than most aircraft. But what about the largest airports in the world? 

Here’s a rundown of the biggest one on each continent

Asia – Dammam King Fahd International, Saudi Arabia

The Saudi Arabian city of Dammam is the home of Asia’s largest airport. Known as King Fahd International (DMM), this facility is, in fact, the largest airport in the world by surface area. It measures 776 square kilometers (300 square miles), although its actual terminal building is comparatively small at ‘just’ 36.75 square kilometers (14.19 square miles).

A reported 10 million passengers pass through Dammam every year. This means that, despite its impressive size, King Fahd International actually only ranks third in Saudi Arabia in terms of passenger numbers (behind Jeddah and Riyadh). Its busiest route serves Dubai. This key UAE destination sees around 70 flights a week from Dammam.

The airport’s two runways are suitably large, each clocking in at 4,000 meters long. It opened in 1991 as a US airbase during the Gulf War. However, since November 1999, it has played a commercial role, and now sits proudly atop the largest airport rankings for both Asia and the world as a whole. Dammam’s old Dhahran Airport is now a Saudi airbase.via Wikimedia Commons

North America – Denver International, USA

According to AeroTime, the second-largest airport in the world by surface area, and the largest in North America, is Denver International (DEN) in the US state of Colorado. It measures 135.7 square kilometers (52.4 square miles), making it around six times smaller than the colossal King Fahd International despite being the world’s second-largest airport.

Part of the reason for Denver’s size is its larger-than-average runways. The lengthiest of these is 4,877 meters long, and is necessary owing to the airport’s higher altitude. Being located around 1.6 km (1 mile) above sea level, the lower air density requires greater true airspeed for aircraft to safely take off due to the decreased power output in such conditions.

Denver International Airport opened in February 1995. In doing so, it replaced the city’s old Stapleton International. Today, it is a key hub for ultra-low-cost carrier Frontier and Star Alliance founding member United. It is also a focus city for Southwest Airlines.

Africa – Cairo International, Egypt

Cairo International Airport (CAI) in Egypt is Africa’s largest airport, with a surface area of 36.3 square km (14 square miles). According to AeroTime, this makes it the ninth-largest airport by surface area in the world as a whole. Cairo is Africa’s second-busiest airport by passenger traffic, behind South Africa’s Johannesburg O. R. Tambo International (JNB).

Cairo International is located in the suburb of Heliopolis, approximately 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) northeast of the Egyptian capital itself. As well as being the base of the country’s flag carrier and Star Alliance member EgyptAir, Cairo is also a hub for Nile Air. This carrier, which is the country’s largest privately-owned airline, primarily serves Saudi Arabian destinations.

Oceania – Alice Springs, Australia

Oceania is home to several key international airports that serve an array of destinations worldwide. These include Sydney and Melbourne in Australia, and Auckland in New Zealand. However, its largest is, in fact, a regional airport that serves Alice Springs in Australia’s Northern Territory. It measures 35.5 square kilometers (13.7 square miles) in area.

The only scheduled flights at Alice Springs (ASP) are domestic services to other destinations within Australia. The airlines that operate these include Airnorth, Alliance Airlines, Qantas, QantasLink, Virgin Australia, and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines.

The airport’s website markets its large surface area as one of its key selling points. It offers development opportunities on-site ranging “from airport and aviation-related activities to camel grazing, horticulture, commercial activities, and light industrial opportunities.” Various airlines have also stored aircraft there during the coronavirus pandemic.

Europe – Paris Charles de Gaulle, France

When it comes to European airports, you might have thought that Amsterdam Schiphol would be the largest. After all, the famous ‘Polderbaan‘ is situated a considerable distance from its terminal. However, Click Travel Tips reports that France’s Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) takes the top spot, measuring 32.4 square kilometers (12.5 square miles).

The airport opened in March 1974, and will celebrate its 50th anniversary later in the decade. It serves as a hub for French flag carrier Air France, as well as the airline’s cargo division. Air France Hop, easyJet, FedEx, and Vueling are also among the airlines to have a significant presence. The facility boasts four runways, one more than neighboring Orly Airport’s three.

South America – Buenos Aires Ezeiza International, Argentina

While slightly more difficult to ascertain figures for South American airports, research suggests that the largest airport in this region by surface area is Argentina’s Buenos Aires Ezeiza International (EZE). This airport is also known as Ministro Pistarini International, after Argentine general and politician Juan Pistarini. It began using his name in 1985.

According to Airport Technology, the airport has an area of 34.75 square km (13.42 square miles). Both AerolĂ­neas Argentina's and local low-cost airline Flybondi have hubs there. It celebrated its 70th anniversary just two years ago, having opened in April 1949. The facility is located 21 meters (67 feet) above sea level, and 22 km (14 mi) from the city center.




Story sourced from here

Sunday, 12 September 2021

Emirates flies from Mumbai to Dubai with one passenger

EMIRATES B777-31H A6-EBR (MSN 34483)

We’ve all seen or read about a lot of empty or near empty long haul flights due to the pandemic, and we’ve even seen stories of some flights with just one passenger, though typically those involved much smaller planes. However, this is the first time I ever recall seeing a story of a plane this big with just one passenger.

A traveler uploaded a video of himself flying from Mumbai to Dubai on an Emirates Boeing 777-300ER, and he was the only passenger. It’s reported that this flight took place on the 19th May.

In the roughly two minute video, the traveler states he doesn’t usually take videos, but that he “felt special” because he was the only passenger on the Emirates flight to Dubai.

In the video you can see the passenger escorted down the jet bridge to the door of the plane (given that he was the only passenger), and once onboard he’s greeted enthusiastically by several crew members, who clap for him.

The captain even comes out and says “usually we do a big PA announcing the flight details, but since it’s the only one here onboard, I’m going to give it to you.” The passenger jokes that the last time he did a charter, it was a 50-seater. The crew then gives him a tour of the three cabin plane, which features a total of 354 seats.

It’s not entirely clear which cabin the passenger had booked, and which cabin the passenger ended up flying in. While I realize there are usually strict rules surrounding complimentary upgrades, I feel like this is one instance where it would have been appropriate to bump him up to a premium cabin, if he wasn’t in one already. 

Why would Emirates even operate this flight?

Some might wonder why Emirates would bother operating a flight with just one passenger. Well, the logistics of international aviation are rather complicated nowadays:
While the Mumbai to Dubai flight may have only had one passenger, it’s possible that the Dubai to Mumbai flight was full; even as Emirates has now stopped carrying passengers from India, the airline continues to carry passengers to India (and just operates the return flight without passengers)
Many airlines are nowadays operating cargo-only flights with passenger aircraft; so just because the cabin is empty doesn’t necessarily mean the airline is losing money

While odds are good that Emirates wasn’t exactly rolling in the dough carrying just one passenger, I suspect the situation wasn’t as bad as it looks.
Bottom line

It sure has been a wild ride for the airline industry in the past 16 months. We’ve seen a lot of flights emptier than usual, though an Emirates 777 flying with just one passenger has to be some sort of a record.

That must have been a cool experience for the passenger!



Saturday, 11 September 2021

20 Years since 9/11

The September 11 attacks, better known as 9/11 were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks by the militant Islamist terrorist group al-Qaeda against the United States of America on the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001.

On that morning, four commercial airliners traveling from the northeastern United States to California were hijacked mid-flight by 19 al-Qaeda terrorists. The hijackers were organized into three groups of five hijackers and one group of four. Each group had one hijacker who had received flight training and took over control of the aircraft. Their explicit goal was to crash each plane into a prominent American building, causing mass casualities and partial or complete destruction of the targeted buildings.

The first plane to hit its target was American Airlines Flight 11. It was flown into the North Tower of the World Trade Center complex in Lower Manhattan at 8:46 am. Seventeen minutes later at 9:03 am, the World Trade Center's South Tower was hit by United Airlines Flight 175. Both 110-story towers collapsed an hour and forty-two minutes later, leading to the collapse of the other World Trade Center structures including 7 World Trade Center, and significantly damaging surrounding buildings.

A third flight, American Airlines Flight 77, flown from Dulles International Airport, was hijacked over Ohio. At 9:37 am, it crashed into the west side of the Pentagon (the headquarters of the American military) in Arlington County, Virginia, causing a partial collapse of the building's side. The fourth, and final flight, United Airlines Flight 93, was flown in the direction of Washington, D.C. This flight was the only plane not to hit its intended target, instead crashing in a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania at 10:03 am. The plane's passengers attempted to regain control of the aircraft away from the hijackers and ultimately diverted the flight from its intended target. Investigators determined that Flight 93's target was either the White House or the U.S. Capitol.

The attacks resulted in 2,977 fatalities, over 25,000 injuries, and substantial long-term health consequences, in addition to at least $10 billion in infrastructure and property damage. It remains the deadliest terrorist attack in human history and the single deadliest incident for firefighters and law enforcement officers in the history of the United States, with 340 and 72 killed, respectively.

“The terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were not only assaults on the United States of America, they were also aimed at the global air transportation system,”.

“We must continue to give the families and loved ones of the victims, and the victims themselves, the recognition and acknowledgement they deserve, while drawing inspiration from the heroes that day.” Billions of dollars have funded airport and aircraft security since then, but the aviation sector still remains a prime terrorist target, industry leaders say.

The 19 hijackers involved killed almost 3,000 people that day.

American Airlines flight 11 and United Airlines flight 175 were the first to crash into the buildings – both killing over 2,500 people, including the terrorists and the flight crew.

Then, American Airlines flight 77 crashed and killed almost 200 people.

The “ultimate sacrifice” of all flight crew, especially on the last flight, United Airlines flight 93, who disrupted the final attack, resulting in the death of all onboard.

United Airlines flight 93 coming from Newark was the one hijack attempt that failed to reach the buildings, as flight crew were able to deter the jet, landing in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

Although all died, many commemorate the first responders on that aircraft who potentially saved thousands of other lives that would have been lost if it crashed into the buildings.

“Two decades later, we are still living with their consequences, including a vastly expanded security and intelligence apparatus that overlays air travel,”. Since that day, security at airports and on planes have continued to tighten, as it began the epidemic of terrorist attacks in years to come.

Airlines were directed to enforce locked and armoured cockpit doors to keep pilots safe, meaning all new aircraft were required to be manufactured that way. Bans were placed on sharp objects and screening became federalised by the Transportation Security Administration.
As terrorist fears grew, regulators began to respond faster to threats. At the end of 2001, the failed attempt of the “shoe-bomber plot” resulted in the requirement of removing shoes during screening.

In 2006, when British police discovered the trans-Atlantic bomb threat, passengers were banned from carrying liquids and gels of a certain size in luggage. Numerous other security measures have been enforced amid different terrorist threats, but Walsh said “security is a constantly evolving challenge”. Although security has “significantly progressed”, he believes the sector “must stay ahead of emerging security threats” as new forms continue to emerge.

“To do this effectively we need to take a more integrated approach on things like cyber risks, drones, and insider threats,” Walsh said.

TO EVERYONE THAT LOST A LOVED ONE THAT DAY AND TO THOSE LEFT BEHIND WHO STILL SUFFER, THOUGHTS AND BEST WISHES GO OUT TO YOU ALL.


Friday, 10 September 2021

Turkish Airlines A330 suffers engine failure: Circles for 4 hours

TURKISH AIRLINES B787-9 TC-LLI (MSN 65809)          File Photo


A Turkish Airline A330 found itself flying over Istanbul for four hours with a failed engine.
TK42 departed Istanbul Airport (IST/LTFM) for Johannesburg-O.R. Tambo International Airport (JNB/FAOR) and found itself in trouble during the initial climb after the left engine emitted several loud noises and flames for a few seconds. The plane finally landed safely four hours and 25 minutes after departure.

TK42 departed Istanbul International Airport at 02:02 AM local time, 15 minutes behind its scheduled time. However, the 9-hour and 35-minute journey did not go to plan. Within minutes of taking off, the left side engine emitted several loud bangs followed by streaks of flames, alarming passengers onboard. Travelers on the left side even captured video of the incident.

The pilots quickly shut down the engine and made a sharp turn to return to Istanbul Airport. However, landing back was not as simple as it seemed. Since the A330-300 was fully loaded with fuel, the pilots had to reduce weight to land safely and prevent a hard landing. This resulted in the aircraft taking over 20 circuits at 6,000 feet over the Black Sea to burn fuel.


The aircraft spent four hours in the holding pattern before landing in Istanbul at 06:28 local time. No one onboard was injured, and passengers had to wait five more hours before a replacement A330 could carry them to Johannesburg. The pilots were quick to respond and announced that the aircraft was facing technical issues over the passenger announcement system. This likely helped calm nerves as travelers spent hours at the same spot.

In situations such as this, airlines usually opt to dump fuel. Fuel dumping is available in most long-haul aircraft and allows pilots to dump excess fuel using nozzles in the wings. However, A330 customers can choose whether or not to include a dumping mechanism since the aircraft can safely divert on a single engine. Moreover, fuel dumps are reserved for time-pressing emergencies, such as medical or immediate safety, since they can have an impact on the ground too. Considering TK42 still had one working engine, burning fuel was a feasible choice.

Aircraft Information:
Airline: Turkish Airlines
Code: TK/THY
Aircraft: Airbus A330-303
Registration: TC-JOB
Serial Number: 1514
Age: 7.5 years
First Flew: 11/03/2014
Engines: 2 x GE CF6-80E1A3







Story sourced from here with additions
Turkish Airlines A330 Suffers Engine Failure: Circles For 4 Hours - Simple Flying

Thursday, 9 September 2021

Air New Zealand drops Sydney flights this October

AIR NEW ZEALAND B787-9 ZK-NZM (MSN 38180) File Photo

Air New Zealand’s October trans-Tasman timetable sees Sydney bypassed in favor of flights to six other destinations in Australia. However, with New Zealand and Australia both pausing their quarantine-free travel corridor, the chances of many trans-Tasman flights operating at all are slight.

Air New Zealand has already suspended its Australian flights in the wake of COVID-19 outbreaks in both countries and the pause of the travel corridor. Now, in an advisory issued on Thursday, Air New Zealand has listed regular passenger flights to Perth, Adelaide, Hobart Melbourne, Gold Coast, and Brisbane between September 25 and October 30. But the airline noted it would not schedule passenger flights into Sydney over the period.
 
Multiple Air New Zealand flights slated for Melbourne next month

Commencing Saturday, September 25, Air New Zealand has timetabled in a daily Boeing 787-9 service between Auckland and Melbourne. NZ123 will depart AKL at 08:55 each morning until October 30. Out of Melbourne, NZ124 pushes back at 12:05.

Melbourne will also see Air New Zealand flights from Wellington, Queenstown, and Christchurch. Operated by an A320neo, NZ255 will depart Wellington (WLG) at 06:05 on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday mornings through to October 30. The return service, NZ250, departs Melbourne at 18:15 on the same day.

Out of Queenstown (ZQN), NZ265 will depart at 15:30 on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. The return service, NZ264, pushes back from Melbourne at 09:20 on the same day.

Three flights a week are also scheduled to come in from Christchurch. After a couple of different departure times, NZ213 settles into a 10:45 departure from CHC on Fridays, Sundays, and Wednesdays over October. An Airbus A320neo operates this flight. The return sector, NZ, 214, departs MEL at 14:00 on the same day. With local cases of COVID-19 rising again in Melbourne, the chances of the majority of these flights operating are remote.

Gold Coast flights planned but not yet scheduled

Brisbane also sees flights scheduled from Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, and Queenstown between September 25 and October 30. Ramping up to four flights a week, an Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 will operate NZ141 out of Auckland at 09:15 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. The return flight, NZ146, pushes back from Brisbane at 11:15 on the same days.

Air New Zealand A320neos are also timetabled to fly to Brisbane three times a week from Wellington, Christchurch, and Queenstown.

Air New Zealand notes it is planning flights to the Gold Coast over October. However, at the time of writing, the airline’s website has not listed the flights. In its advisory, Air New Zealand states it plans to fly between Auckland and the Gold Coast three to four times a week until October 30.

Hobart, Adelaide, & Perth stay in the Air New Zealand timetable

Hobart will continue to see its government-subsidized Air New Zealand flights scheduled. Operating as NZ197, an Air New Zealand A320neo will leave AKL at 09:00 on Thursdays and Sundays through to October 30. The flight back to Auckland, NZ198, will depart HBA at 12:30 on the same day.

Out of Auckland, NZ191 will fly to Adelaide on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays. The A321neo will depart Auckland at 08:40. The return flight, NZ192, pushes back from ADL at 12:15 on the same days.

Finally, Air New Zealand plans to fly to Perth three times a week from Auckland over October. However, this is not yet reflected in the published schedules. There are sporadic instances of a 10:50 departure from Auckland, NZ175, using a 787-9 Dreamliner. Out of Perth, there are also scattered instances of NZ176 pushing back at 18:45 for the overnight flight back to Auckland.

Perth, Adelaide, Hobart, Brisbane, and the Gold Coast are all presently unaffected by lockdowns and local cases of COVID-19. But the critical Air New Zealand destinations of Melbourne and Sydney are shut down and set to stay that way over October.

Air New Zealand has already dropped Sydney over October. Considering the deteriorating situation in Melbourne, it is passing strange the airline continues to schedule so many flights to Australia’s second-biggest city over October.

Until the quarantine-free travel corridor reopens (and it isn’t likely to anytime soon), trans-Tasman passenger traffic will remain thin. It makes Air New Zealand’s latest trans-Tasman schedules highly optimistic and, in the case of Melbourne, almost certain not to operate.




Story sourced from here
Air New Zealand Drops Sydney Flights This October - Simple Flying


Wednesday, 8 September 2021

Lufthansa planning 747 routes from October



While many airlines around the world are scrapping the Queen of the sky's from their fleet, Lufthansa, the world’s biggest user of the passenger Boeing 747 is planning on returning the Queen to the sky. It has both the B747-400 and B747-8. Its iconic B747-400s are due to resume service from the 31st of October with 10 routes, joined by another in March 2022. Its B747-8s, meanwhile, are expected to fly to 16 destinations at the end of October. 

Lufthansa has eight Boeing 747-400s with an average age of 21.4 years, ch-aviation.com indicates. Some of the quadjets have been returning from storage ahead of their scheduled and anticipated return to service. All eight machines are due to be used again before being withdrawn and replaced by incoming Boeing 777-9s.

The German carrier expects to resume commercial B747-400 flights on October 31, the first day of the northern hemisphere winter. As you’ll appreciate, this is liable to change, although Euro control data from last week shows that Frankfurt was Europe’s fourth-busiest airport by total flights.

Lufthansa plans 11 B747-400 routes

Lufthansa expects 10 routes by the type from the 31st October , with an 11th – to Seattle – due on March 27th, the start of summer 2022. All routes are bookable by the 744, all are from Frankfurt, and all are once-daily. If they all do take off on October 31st, the 744 will have 10 outbound flights that day, OAG shows, behind the A330-300 (13), A340-600 (14), and B747-8 (16).

At 5,322 miles, Frankfurt-Seoul is the longest route. In contrast, Frankfurt-Dubai (3,022 miles) is the shortest. LH630 is scheduled to depart Frankfurt at 13:30, arrive Dubai at 22:45, leave at 01:50, and arrive back in Germany at 05:45. 
It’ll compete directly with two daily A380 flights by Emirates.

Lufthansa’s B747-8 fleet comprises 19 examples, averaging 7.9 years. Across all carriers, there are just over 10,000 747 flights this year, with the 74H now the leading variant – mainly thanks to Lufthansa. The equipment has been used regularly through the pandemic.


Looking at the week starting October 31st, the following routes are expected. All are bookable, from Frankfurt, and once-daily. Some 12 of these 16 are already operated by the 74H, but Hong Kong, JFK, Singapore, and Tokyo are scheduled to see the variant from October 31st.

  • Bangalore
  • Buenos Aires
  • Chicago
  • Delhi
  • Hong Kong
  • Houston
  • Johannesburg
  • Los Angeles
  • Mexico City
  • New York JFK
  • Newark
  • San Francisco
  • Sao Paulo
  • Shanghai
  • Singapore
  • Tokyo Haneda

If all B747-400 and B747-8 routes operate as planned on this day, there will be 26 departures from Frankfurt.




Monday, 6 September 2021

Philippine Airlines files for bankruptcy

PHILIPPINES A320-214 RP-C8612 (MSN 3553)      File Photo

Philippine Airlines has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in New York with a lender-supported plan that helps the country’s main carrier recover after the pandemic devastated global travel. The company aims to cut US$2 billion in borrowings through a proposed restructuring plan, which needs court approval and will allow the carrier to reduce its fleet capacity by 25%, it said.

Philippine Airlines will also get US$505 million in equity and debt financing from its majority shareholder, as well as US$150 million of debt financing from new investors. Chapter 11 lets a company continue to operate while it restructures. The filing on Friday comes after the airline spent months negotiating with its stakeholders. Billionaire owner Lucio Tan called the filing a “major breakthrough” for the carrier.

The restructuring plan allows the airline “to overcome the unprecedented impact of the global pandemic that has significantly disrupted businesses in all sectors, especially aviation, and emerge stronger for the long-term,” Tan, who’s the chairman and chief executive officer, said in a statement. In response to the coronavirus outbreak, the Philippine government has banned travel to Hong Kong, along with Macau and mainland China.

Earlier this month, the Philippines' Labor Department announced that it would offer financial assistance and temporary housing to workers who'd gotten stranded in the capital en route to their jobs overseas.
How Covid changed the recovery flightplan. While an end to lockdowns eased the strain on travel at the start of the summer season in the Northern Hemisphere, the delta variant of Covid-19 has recently begun hurting many airlines, especially in the U.S. and China.

PHILIPPINES A321-231 RP-C9903 (MSN 5787)     File Photo

Philippine Airlines is the latest international carrier to reorganize in the United States, under U.S. bankruptcy code. By using Chapter 11, the company will subject its reorganization plan to the final decision of a U.S. judge. A statement on the flag-carrier’s website says “Chapter 11 is a globally recognized U.S. legal process that many airlines have used to reinvent themselves into more successful companies. The restructuring will enable PAL to emerge with fresh capital, lower debt and a sturdier financial foundation for the future.”

Bankruptcy experts say the U.S. is often the preferred venue, in part because the law in America is more favorable to a company, and partly because creditor contracts are often based on state law in New York or Delaware.

Latam Airlines, based in Chile, Aeromexico and Colombia’s Avianca Holdings all sought court protection in New York last year, blaming the drop in air travel caused by the coronavirus. The pandemic has forced airlines to suspend flights, lay off employees and seek financial help. In June, Garuda Indonesia’s president said the carrier was considering options including restructuring debt and renegotiating contracts with aircraft lessors.

The challenges for PAL Holdings, the holding company of Philippine Airlines, predate the pandemic. It has reported losses since the first quarter of 2017. The company suffered a record 71.8 billion pesos (US$1.4 billion) loss in 2020, compared with a 10.3 billion peso shortfall the year before. The airline will continue to operate its passenger and cargo flights based on demand and travel restrictions, and promises that “All current and future tickets and travel vouchers will be honored, subject to the usual terms and conditions of use.”

The company also said it expects to gradually add domestic and international flights as the market recovers.



This article is published under license from Bloomberg Media: the original article can be viewed here


Sunday, 5 September 2021

Happy Father's Day


Today Australia, Fiji, New Guinea and New Zealand celebrate Father's Day and for many Australians, it's going to be a very different Father's Day this year given the coronavirus pandemic and states in lockdown. I lost my dad in May last year so this is the second Father's day without him, but along with my wife and two daughters we will be thinking of him today as we celebrate.



















Social-distancing restrictions mean the usual family get-together's today may not be possible, while travel restrictions mean many of us won't be able to get across state borders to visit our families in person. What ever you do I hope you have a great day.

I always thought Father's day was the same day all over the world. Each country sets its own dates for Father's Day and has some of its own traditions around the opportunity to show love to Dad at home and in the community. Traditions vary for Father's Day celebrations around the world. For example, some countries link Father's Day to the Feast of St. Joseph on March 19, which celebrates Joseph of Nazareth, father of Jesus. In Germany, Father's Day is commonly celebrated by men loading wagons with beer and heading off into the woods. In Russia, Father's Day overlaps with their Defender of the Fatherland Day. So, while fathers are honored, many of them march in military parades in their home towns on the same day. 

Below is a list of counties and dates for Father's Day

U.S., Canada, and the U.K.
The date varies in these countries, but it always falls on the third Sunday in June.
2020: June 14
2021: June 20

Austria and Belgium
These two countries are aligned with each other (but not many others) on when to celebrate Father's Day.
2020: June 7
2021: June 13

Samoa and Brazil
August is the month to honor dads in these two countries.
2020: August 9
2021: August 8

Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden
Much of Scandinavia celebrates Father's Day in November.
2020: November 8
2021: November 14

Countries Where Father's Day is Celebrated Annually on March 19
These seven countries all share a March tradition of when to celebrate Father's Day.

Andora
Bolivia
Honduras
Italy
Liechtenstein
Portugal
Spain

Other Countries' Father's Day Dates

Each of these countries has picked its own date to celebrate Father's Day. Some are calendar-based and some are on the same date each year.

Germany: sixth Sunday after Easter
Romania: second Sunday in May
Togo: third Sunday in May
Russia: February 23 every year
Egypt: June 21 each year
El Salvador: June 17 each year
Guatemala: June 17 each year
Haiti: last Sunday in June
Jordan: June 21 each year
Lebanon: June 21 each year
Lithuania: first Sunday in June
Nicaragua: June 23 each year
Poland: June 23 each year
Syria: June 21 each year
Uganda: June 21 each year
Dominican Republic: last Sunday in July

Happy Father's Day to all the dad's out there,  I hope you have a wonderful day.

Rest in peace Dad, I miss you and love you so much.

Saturday, 4 September 2021

Remembering Alaska Airlines Flight 1866

 

ALASKA B737-990 N248AK (CN 62469)         File Photo

Alaska Airlines, Flight 1866 (AS66) was a scheduled passenger flight from Anchorage (ANC/ PANC), to Seattle (SEA/KSEA), with intermediate stops at Cordova (CDV/PACV), Yakutat (YAK/PAYA), Juneau (JNU/PAJN), and Sitka (SIT/PASI). The flight departed Anchorage at 09:13 and landed at Cordova at 09:42. AS66 departed Cordova at 10:34 after a delay, part of which was attributable to difficulty in securing a cargo compartment door. The flight landed at Yakutat at 11:07. While on the ground, AS66 received an air traffic control clearance to the Juneau Airport via Jet Route 507 to the Pleasant Intersection, direct to Juneau, to maintain 9,000 feet or below until 15 miles southeast of Yakutat on course, then to climb to and maintain FL230. The flight departed Yakutat at 11:35, with 104 passengers and seven crew members on board. At 11:46, AS66 contacted the Anchorage ARTCC and reported level at FL230, 65 miles east of Yakutat. The flight was then cleared to descend at the pilot's discretion to maintain 10,000 ft so as to cross the Pleasant Intersection at 10,000 feet and was issued a clearance limit to the Howard Intersection. At 11:54, the controller instructed AS66 to maintain 12,000 feet. Approximately 1 minute later, the flight reported level at 12,000 feet. The changes to the flight's original clearance to the Howard Intersection were explained to AS66 by the controller as follows: "I've got an airplane that's not following his clearance, I've got to find out where he is." The controller was referring to N799Y, a Piper Apache which had departed Juneau at 11:44 on an IFR clearance, destination Whitehorse, Canada.
On two separate occasions, AS66 acted as communications relay between the controller and N799Y.
At 11:58, AS66 reported that they were at the Pleasant Intersection, entering the holding pattern, whereupon the controller re-cleared the flight to Howard Intersection via the Juneau localiser. In response to the controller's query as to whether the flight was "on top" at 12,000 feet, the captain stated that the flight was "on instruments." At 12:00, the controller repeated the flight's clearance to hold at Howard Intersection and issued an expected approach time of 12:10. At 12:01, AS66 reported that they were at Howard, holding 12,000 feet. Six minutes later, AS66 was queried with respect to the flight's direction of holding and its position in the holding pattern. When the controller was advised that the flight had just completed its inbound turn and was on the localizer, inbound to Howard, he cleared AS66 for a straight-in LDA approach, to cross Howard at or below 9,000 feet inbound. The captain acknowledged the clearance and reported leaving 12,000 feet. At 12:08 the captain reported "leaving five thousand five ... four thousand five hundred," whereupon the controller instructed AS66 to contact Juneau Tower. Contact with the tower was established shortly thereafter when the captain reported, "Alaska sixty-six Barlow inbound." (Barlow Intersection is located about 10 nautical miles west of the Juneau Airport). The Juneau Tower Controller responded, "Alaska 66, understand, ah, I didn't, ah, copy the intersection, landing runway 08, the wind 080° at 22 occasional gusts to 28, the altimeter now 29.47, time is 09 1/2, call us by Barlow". No further communication was heard from the flight.
The Boeing 727 impacted the easterly slope of a canyon in the Chilkat Range of the Tongass National Forest at the 2475-foot level. The aircraft disintegrated on impact killing all 111 passengers and crew.

PROBABLE CAUSE: 

"A display of misleading navigational information concerning the flight's progress along the localizer course which resulted in a premature descent below obstacle clearance altitude. The origin or nature of the misleading navigational information could not be determined. The Board further concludes that the crew did not use all available navigational aids to check the flight's progress along the localizer nor were these aids required to be used. The crew also did not perform the required audio identification of the pertinent navigational facilities."



Aircraft Information
Airline: Alaska Airlines
Code: AS/ASA
Aircraft: Boeing 727-193
Registration: N2969G
Serial Number: 19304
First Flew: 24-06-1966
Age: 5 years 2 months
Engines: 3 Pratt & Whitney JT8D-7B