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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Porter Airlines says safety rebuke owing to manual

Porter Airlines said on Tuesday that no imminent safety issues were involved in an incident some 4years ago when it received a warning from Transport Canada inspectors charged with implementing new air safety regulations.

Rather, the incident involved a previously sanctioned maintenance manual that the small, regional airline was needed to bring more into line with the federal body's newly minted safety management system (SMS), Porter Chief Executive Robert Deluce said.


The issue occurred "in the early phase of our progress, at a time when we were struggling to realize the implication of SMS. Today SMS is much better understood," Deluce told.

He said Porter was the first planned airline in Canada needed to be fully SMS compliant as its launch coincided with the unveiling of the new regulations. Much bigger-rivals, Air Canada and WestJet Airlines, were given two to three years to phase in the rules, he said.

Postmedia group, which owns the National Post newspaper, described on Monday that Porter had in the past faced the menace of being grounded for failing to obey with Transport Canada's air safety regulations. It did not give details of what the issue involved had been or when it had happened.

Closely held Porter, which was establish nearly five years ago, flies to short haul destinations in Eastern Canada and the United States from the Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, which is placed just minutes from the city's center.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

BA says too early to start again Libya flights

British-Airways (BA)
British Airways (BA) said it is still reviewing the security risks of flying to Libya's capital Tripoli and will not restart operations before the NATO no fly zone is lifted.

The British flag carrier said it plans to start a review of the security risks of flying to the capital, Tripoli, but has no date to restart flights.

"We will be looking at chances to restart our operations when the no fly zone, which presently bars commercial operations and only allows limited charter flights for specific intention, is lifted," BA's international risk advisor William Sandover told Reuters.

The detail of this assess will get underway once the security situation on the ground and in the air becomes clearer.

IAG owned BA suspended its daily flight to Tripoli from London's Heathrow airport in February. In June BA said it hoped to restart its Libyan services at the end of October but this at the moment looks doubtful.

"We have not set a date to restart flights," said Sandover.

Some of British Airway's competitors are taking a less cautious approach and Libya's interim transport minister said this week that various international carriers have decided to start flights yet again.

Turkish Airlines is the lone carrier to have resume flights to Libya since rebel fighters captured Tripoli in August. A Turkish Airlines passenger service landed in Tripoli's Mitiga airport from Istanbul previous this month.

In March the U.N. Security Council approved a resolution on imposing a no fly zone in Libya to protect civilians from air attacks by fighters loyal to fallen leader Muammar Gaddafi.

The no-fly zone, extended for a further 90 days in late September, blocked all international commercial flights to and from the Libyan capital of Tripoli.

A U.N. Security resolution on Sept. 16 relieved some permit on Libya but kept the no fly zone in place, despite calls from South Africa and Russia for it to be lifted.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Flights will Increase at Gatwick Airport

Gatwick Airport
FLIGHTS at Gatwick Airport will add to more than 100 a day under a draft master plan reveals.

The plan, which lays out the airport's objectives up to 2020, projects around 286,000 flight activities a year, approximately 783 every day – up from 663 today.

Although the plan states that there is presently the infrastructure support to enlarge, airport bosses deny to rule out a possible future application for a second runway.

Gatwick's public affairs manager, Henry Parker, said: "In the event that a second runway is necessary, Gatwick is a part of nationally important infrastructure. It would be disingenuous of us to rule it out entirely.

It may be required in the future, but the key word there is 'may'.

"We desire to convey more long-haul flights into the airport. The goal is to become London's airport of choice."

The draft master plan entitled Gatwick Airport: Our dream for 2020 will now be subject to a three-month public consultation period of time.

Mr. Parker is eager to stress their instant plans fit within Gatwick's current one runway, two terminal format and the current £1.2 billion developments, including security enhancements and expansion of the north terminal. The plan projects a 20 percent increase in passengers through the gates, from 32 million a year to 40 million by 2020, with the airport maybe hitting its capacity of 45 million passengers a year by 2030.

Mr. Parker said: "It is about making it a superior airport to go through. We are radically changing the way we run the runway, increasing the flights per hr that we can accommodate."

With the airport presently generating £2 billion a yr for London and the south east, the plan proposes increasing this by £300 million a yr, creating 1,700 on site jobs.

Members of Gatwick Area Conservative Campaign welcomed what they called a "more realistic approach" from the airport, but said it was still not sufficient.

Vice chairman John Byng said: "It looks like the owners are being a bit more realistic, but we feel these forecasts about them running out of capacity by 2030 will prove false and they will never require a second runway."

Green campaigners bang the proposals, calling the increase unnecessary and risky.

Sarah Finch, borough councillor for Redhill East, said: "It makes no sense. We want to reduce traffic to airports if we are to decrease carbon emissions.

"There isn't room for enlargement that goes for the runway and flights."

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Qatar Airways extend North American cargo service

Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways will establish dedicated freight routes to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport and Toronto Pearson International Airport from its Doha hub through Luxembourg next month. Twice-weekly freight flights to Atlanta and Houston will commence on November 2 while Toronto will senjoy weekly service beginning November 7.

The flights, which will be performed on Boeing 777F airplane, represent a significant expansion plan for the Middle Eastern carrier. Previously, the only North American city served by Qatar Airways’ cargo division was Chicago. O’Hare International Airport will soon benefit from increased freight service, however, as Qatar increases its frequency to the Midwestern city on October 30.

“With the recent completion of our 35 percent stake in Cargolux, Europe’s largest cargo airline, we have enhance our focus on freighter operations, which ties seamlessly into the airline’s strategy to have as a lot of connecting points across the globe from our Doha hub,” Qatar Airways Group CEO Akbar Al Baker said in a declaration.

“We have recognized marvelous route expansion opportunities around the world, including North America, where the freighter market is enormous,” he continued.

Qatar Airways cargo service

Representatives for the carrier said that daily passenger routes to Washington, New York and Houston, along with thrice-weekly service to Montreal, also offer important bellyhold cargo capability. Only Houston, still, necessitated a dedicated cargo route to address demand.

Addressing demand was as well why Qatar Airways selected Atlanta as a destination for cargo service. As the 10th largest U.S. exporter to the Middle East last year, Atlanta offers Qatar Airways “a geographically desirable location for freight carriers and freight forwarders that want to enlarge their global networks with lower operating costs,” Hartsfield-Jackson Aviation General Manager Louis Miller stated.

“Companies eagerly can connect with air, road and railway transportation systems in Atlanta,” Miller said in a declaration. “The addition of Qatar Airways will further improve our airport’s reputation as a leading cargo airport.”

North America isn’t the only cargo market Qatar Airways is eying, still. The Doha-based carrier recently increased its cargo service to Kuwait, Bengaluru, Hanoi and Kozhikode, India. It will also establish weekly cargo service to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on October 30.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Muslim woman litigates Southwest Airlines after being taken off flight

Muslim woman sues Southwest Airlines
A Muslim woman, Irum Abbasi from San Diego is suing Southwest Airlines after being taken off a flight in March when crew members deemed her activities suspicious.

She was wearing a hijab, the Islamic head scarf, was seated on a flight preparing to depart from San Diego's Lindbergh Field for San Jose. When a flight attendant became concerned about something she thought Abbasi had said on her cell phone.

Abbasi later said that she told somebody on her cell phone, "I have to go," but that the attendant thought she had said, "It's a go."

Irum Abbasi was escorted off the airplane by an employee of the Transportation Security Administration.

A U.S. citizen, Irum has lived in the US for a decade after emigrating from Pakistan. She was taking a flight to San Jose, where she is a graduate student at San Jose State.

The lawsuit, register on her behalf by the Council on American-Islamic Relations-California and noted San Diego civil liberties attorney James McElroy, accuse the airline with discrimination.

Three days after the March 13 incident, the airline make an apology and noted that Irum Abbasi was seated on the next flight to San Jose and given a travel voucher.

"We genuinely apologize for the customer's difficulty," the airline said in its public apology.

McElroy and representatives of the board on American-Islamic Relations have scheduled a news conference outside the terminal at Lindbergh Field to talk about the case.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Six airlines suspended service to Pak, NA told

Pakistan Defense Minister Ch. Ahmad Mukhtar
Pakistan Defense Minister Ch. Ahmad Mukhtar has informed the National Assembly that nearly six international airlines have suspended their operations to Pakistan airports because of security and commercial reasons.

In a written statement, he told the Lower House that British Airways, Air France, Lufthansa of Germany, Singapore Airlines, Swiss Air and Indian Airlines have suspended their operations because of above-mentioned reasons. But, he stated that currently 25 foreign international airlines have filed their landing schedules for destination in Pakistan in the summer 2011 season and for operating their flights regularly.

He further confirmed that the Civil Aviation Authority has not endure any losses because of the suspension of flights by the airlines mentioned above, as commencement of operations by any airline or its enhancement/ reduction in number of frequencies being operated is a continuous feature of any airport.

It may also be added that on this period NAS Air of Saudi Arabia, Eriterian Airline and KAM Air of Afghanistan have begin their operation to/from Pakistan beside Turkish Airline has as well increased their flights from 4 to 7 per week.

About the LNG import, Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Dr Asim Hussain in a written statement also informed the House that Liquefied Natural Gas was not being imported now as LNG infrastructure needed to receive LNG was not available. However, he added that steps like fast tract LNG import projects through the private sector at their cost and risk without any government guarantee, gas import project such as Iran-Pakistan Gas Pipeline projects Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India project (TAPI) under development and increase indigenous gas production were being taken to manage the shortage of natural gas in the country.

Pakistan Airlines logo
To another question regarding any proposal to import gas from Iran, the minister affirmed that an agreement has been signed between Interstate Gas System Pvt. Limited from Pakistan side and Natural Iranian Gas Company from Iran side for execution of the project while first gas flow is estimated by the end of December 2014.

Likewise, Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Moula Baksh Chandio in his written reply told the National Assembly that NAB has arrested 495 accused from March 2006 to March 2011 out of which 198 accused persons have been convicted, demur ex-public holders, on the same period while 620 accused except ex-public office holders have so far been released on bail including accused arrested prior to March, 2006.

Monday, October 3, 2011

India, 25 others be against EU airline carbon charge plan

Airline carbon emission charge
European Union plans to charge airlines for carbon emissions are "discriminatory" and violate global laws, a group of 26 countries as well as the United States and China said in a joint declaration released by the Indian govt.

India, which hosted a two day meeting in New Delhi this week, said delegates from the non EU countries, which are too members of the U.N.'s International Civil Aviation Organization ICAO.L executive council, accepted to lodge a formal protest against the EU's new rules at the council's next gathering.

"There was large concern expressed by all countries present, without exception, that the unilaterally imposed EU (emissions trading scheme) measures were conflicting with the international legal regimes," the statement said.

"The legal debilities in the EU laws were pointed out. It was affirmed by the various delegates that they were also discriminatory (to) carriers."

The EU says it wants to put a price on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions to guard against futurity climate impacts such as crop failures, droughts or flooding.

It has established an emissions trading scheme ETS.L to assist it cut carbon dioxide emissions, which it has pledged to decrease by 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2020.

As of January 2012, airlines flying into or out of EU airports will have to surrender permits to cover up all the CO2 they emit throughout the entire flight. They join some 11,000 factories and power plants already in the $100 billion market.

ICAO said the issue of aviation in the EU ETS is on the schedule for the 190-nation body's next meeting in November, where the group of 26 countries said they will submit a working paper on with their joint statement in opposition of the scheme.

Critics as well as the 26 opposing governments have called the "unilateral" scheme illegal, saying it breaches the Chicago Convention on international aviation as well as some provisions under the World Trade Organization WTO.L.

Three U.S. airlines are presently challenging the EU plans in Europe's highest court, which is due to provide its first opinion on the case on October 6.


Although opposition to the EU's aviation policy is getting more blatant, the bloc's executive indicates no signs of yielding.

"The EU is not allowing for backing down," an EU spokesman told, adding up that the bloc's executive support other countries to in its place adopt similar emissions reducing goals.

The EU keeps that it could exempt airlines from countries that have adopted climate policies took for equivalent to Europe's targets.

But some nations have flouted at the offer and retaliated instead through other means, saying aviation should be regulated on a global level by measures approved by all ICAO members.

China blocked a $3.8 billion aircraft buy by Hong Kong Airlines from France-based Airbus (EAD.PA) at the Paris air show in June, sources said, adding to worries of a brewing trade war.