“My father taught that the only helping hand you are ever going to be able to rely on is the one at the end of your sleeve.”
J. C. Watts, Jr.
African Pilot’s August edition
The August edition of African Pilot that features all the aviation businesses at Lanseria International Airport that took part in this feature is complete. The August edition will enter its circulation phase from today and will be fully circulated by early next week. Apart from the Lanseria feature, this bumper edition of 174 pages has more than 35 fully illustrated articles published. It has also become abundantly clear that African Pilot is the only aviation publication that has being interacting with its clients on a regular basis throughout the COVID-19 lockdown period.
Bose offer on aviation headsets
If you’re thinking of buying a new headset, Bose has a great promotion running until 9 August 2020.
If you buy either a Bose ProFlight Series 2 or a Bose A20 headset, you’ll receive a FREE Bose SoundLink Revolve Bluetooth® speaker (retail value R 5,990.00).
If you need more than one aviation headset, you can get 10% off, providing they’re all part of your original order.
The promotional item will be available for redemption at your Bose authorised reseller after the promotion ends. You can locate your preferred Bose dealer for further advice, assistance and a product demonstration at bose-aviation.eu/shops.
For more information, talk to your Bose dealer, or go to the Bose Aviation website.
Significant changes coming to African Pilot
Someone once said the only thing that is sure is that things will change. Over the past 19 years that African Pilot has been publishing its monthly aviation magazine, we have been fixated on the printed version. Now that the magazine is being published in the digital format, we will be increasing the font size by 50%, adding many more pages and preparing several other changes that will greatly enhance the reader’s experience on digital platforms. The August edition will probably land up as a 160 to 170-page edition, because as a digital publication, the number of pages does not affect the production. The fact that readers will be positioned to access the August edition on any device means that the African Pilot will become far more user friendly. This will be the first of a series of enhancements that will culminate in an interactive publication with provision for picture galleries and short videos by the end of this year. The August 2020 edition will be the first magazine to adopt some of these changes, with others to follow from September onwards.
African Pilot’s September edition
The September edition of African Pilot will feature Avionics and Instrumentation, which is normal since I usually bring the newest developments of the exciting developments announced at AirVenture in Oshkosh each year. However, this year I will have attended several online webinars during the AirVenture week to find out as much as possible about what is to be launched to the aviation world.
The material deadline for the September edition in on Wednesday 19 August 2020.
For advertising opportunities please contact Adrian Munro at e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or Cell: 079 880 4359. All editorial material should be sent to me at: email@example.com.
The following are links to all the magazines that African Pilot produced this year so that you can download all the 2020 editions in magazine view format:
WhatsApp your questions or concerns to
+27 (0)60 012 3456
About African Pilot
There is no doubt that African Pilot provides the finest overall media reach of all aviation publications in Africa where we are in a position to provide professional video and stills photography, website development, social media platforms, company newsletters as well as several other important media services to our customers. Naturally the monthly printed magazine has an incredibly long shelf life due to its excellent design and layout. Then of course the monthly magazine is also available as a digital edition where ALL advertisers have enjoy the direct routing to their websites at a touch on a smart phone or tablet as well as a click of the mouse on a computer screen.
Do you want instant aviation news and opinions?
Visit www.APAcom.co.za and register yourself as a user
SOUTH AFRICAN AVIATION NEWS
SACAA General Notice #GAD-2020/003_1 dated 17 July 2020
The most important change in this document is the following:
iv) Arrival and Departure aerodrome or site remains the same for the flight, with latitude granted for off base refuelling or event participation under the approved applicable SOP
2.4. For the purpose of proficiency flights in 2.2. and 2.3. above a pilot may request that a nominated and current senior mentor pilot or instructor be permitted to accompany the applicant as a safety pilot in order to promote proficiency and safety during such flights.
b) In the case of parachuting and hang or paragliding, tandem operations are NOT permitted.
i. Each owner / pilot requesting a flight to be undertaken under the applicability of this Notice will be required to complete a flight request form that is accessible on the websites of the Aero Club of South Africa www.aeroclub.org.za and / or the Commercial Aviation Association www.caasa.co.za. (This will include a Covid-19 compliance form).
SACAA medical requirement
The above is yet another ridiculous attempt to enforce regulations on aviation crew members by the SACAA, which clearly infringes on the rights of South African citizens.
SACAA Industry Communique
SACAA Financial position – impact of COVID-19
SACAA User Fees Principles Deloitte presentation
What happened in aviation over the past week?
Cigarette crime syndicates in Tshwane involving corrupt Metro Police Officers. Previously never seen footage of Police Corruption: https://youtu.be/sZ4KvSjMRFY
On 12 July 2020, in Hercules, Pretoria, one of our international client’s business was illegally invaded by three Tshwane Metropolitan Police Department officials:
• The heavily armed officials are seen placing a cigarette carton on the table and then proceeding to intimidate and harass the employees of our client.
• The police officers falsely alleged that our client was illegally trading in cigarettes.
• Over 300+ cartons of cigarettes (stock held on the premises, but not being sold) were stolen by these officials.
• The officers proceeded to open false charges of trading in cigarettes against our clients.
• When the police submitted the cigarettes as evidence, they did not submit all the confiscated stock! Only a minimal number of cartons were submitted.
• Bail was granted, but the matter was never processed and no explanation was given to the clients and the confiscated stock was not returned!
• Our legal representative informed us that more than 20 persons, in a similar position were seen in court and their matters were also not duly processed.
• No accountability was taken by the authorities whatsoever at all.
Police Corruption is a serious crime and it is escalating at an immense rate. Victims are intimidated to such an extent that they fear for their safety and lives. The authorities who are appointed to protect the South African public are rapidly becoming part of the problem.
The public has one of two options, either to go to the SAPS for help or to contact professional and reputable safety-and security services. ‘Specialised Security Services’ is receiving more and more cases involving thugs in uniform, with claims ranging from fraud and theft to intimidation and extortion.
These police officials are part of a bigger scheme run by syndicates, who can transport and distribute stolen items. The biggest heists, ATM-bombings and cash-in-transit attacks are all the more supported by security officers, police officers, prosecutors and the judiciary.
It seems as if – in the South Africa of today, a person can commit a crime and can get away with it! This is exactly the reason why we are contacted by the public, who prefer to place their trust in our organisation, for their personal safety and for the knowledge that justice will be done. Our organisation relies on trusted and highly experienced individuals with-in the SAPS and judiciary system. If you have any further information or have experienced a similar situation, please contact our offices immediately.
All information received will be treated in the strictest confidence and every identity will be protected.
Specialist Investigators into Serious Violent & Serious Economic Crimes
PSIRA Reg. 1590364/421949
Mobile: +27(0) 82 447 6116 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
AFRICAN AVIATION NEWS
Ethiopian Boeing 777 freighter catches fire in Shanghai
According to multiple photos and videos circulating on Chinese social media, the fire seems to have originated on the main cargo deck and burned through the upper fuselage. Presently there is not much information available about this incident, but the aircraft is believed to be ET-ARH, a five-year old Boeing 777 Freighter. It arrived from Brussels Airport on Tuesday and was scheduled for São Paulo on Wednesday. Videos posted show the Airport fire department are on the scene and are bringing the fire under control. Li batteries perhaps?
WORLDWIDE ACCIDENTS AND INCIDENTS
Plane carrying Dale Earnhardt Jr. on fire
One of Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s pilots kicked open the main cabin door wide enough for the NASCAR legend and his family to escape to safety. All five people and a dog survived after the Cessna Citation crashed while the pilots were trying to land in August 2019 at the municipal airport in Elizabethton, Tennessee. Both Earnhardt and the pilots told NTSB investigators that it seemed the right landing gear collapsed during a hard landing. Earnhardt also tried to get the rear hatch open. He told pilot Jeff Melton to try the cabin door again. According to a statement from Earnhardt and his wife to accident investigators, there was heavy smoke coming from the bathroom and flames were visible.
Security video from the airport showed the crash. According to the NTSB examination summary. the plane bounced when it first touched down and on the second touchdown, the right landing gear collapsed and the wing tip contacted the runway. After leaving the runway, the plane went down a hill for 400 feet, even crossing a 25-foot wide creek bed before sliding up a hill, slamming through a chain-link fence and stopping on the edge of a highway. The report says the three Earnhardts each had minor injuries, but the pilots were not injured.
NTSB preliminary report: Evektor Aerotechnik SportStar
On 1 July 2020, an Evektor-Aerotechnik Sportstar, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident at Leeward Air Ranch Airport (FD04), Ocala, Florida. The sport pilot was fatally injured. According to local law enforcement officials, the pilot was returning to her home airfield following a morning flight to Williston, Florida. A witness reported that the airplane was landing on runway 18. However, it was higher than normal on final approach. The airplane touched down ‘quite a way’ down the runway and bounced twice. The airplane then banked to the left and went out of sight at the left side of the runway. Another witness observed the airplane touch down on the nose wheel. It then bounced, flipped and landed upside down. An inspector with the Federal Aviation Administration responded to the accident site and examined the wreckage. The wreckage was found inverted and there was no fire. The fuselage and both wings were structurally damaged.
Worn ignition switch and key leads to fatal unintended engine start
After completing a personal flight with his wife, the private pilot secured the Cessna 182’s engine by placing the mixture control in the idle cut-off position. Based on physical evidence observed after the accident, he likely moved the ignition switch toward the off position and removed the key. The pilot’s wife indicated that, after they performed local errands and returned to the airport, the pilot was performing his pre-flight inspection of the airplane with the ignition key in his pocket. Although security video at the airport in Cleveland, Tennessee, did not capture the accident sequence and the pilot’s wife, who was by the airplane’s right cabin door, did not see her husband move the propeller, she heard the propeller move and the engine starting or trying to start. The pilot likely slightly moved the propeller and the engine briefly started. The propeller then rotated and fatally injured the pilot. The engine did not continue operating, and the propeller stopped rotating.
Post-accident examination of the 42-year-old ignition switch revealed that it appeared to be in the off position when observed visually from the pilot’s seat, but its actual selected position was more toward the right magneto position. The switch and key were determined to be slightly misaligned with the instrument panel placard markings. On- and off-airframe operational testing of the ignition switch in the as-found position revealed the right magneto was hot, or not grounded. In addition, examination of the cut surfaces of the key notches revealed relatively smooth and reflective surface features consistent with a worn surface on the flank of the notch adjacent to the key retention ridge and on the tip end of the shank opposite the notched side. Examination of the key cylinder revealed an area with a smooth and reflective surface consistent with wear on the lower side of the key slot. The location and shape of the worn area was consistent with wear contact with the tip of the key as it was inserted and removed.
The key could be removed from the switch in any of the five positions due to the wear of the switch’s internal components, contrary to its intended function that would retain the key in any position except the off position.
Although the switch manufacturer tested all new switches to ensure this functionality when new, that test is not specified to be performed at any time as part of any inspection or checklist by the switch manufacturer, airframe manufacturer, or Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 43 Appendix D. Although the mechanic who performed the last annual inspection reported the key-to-switch integrity was satisfactory with no discrepancies, the worn condition of the ignition switch likely existed at the time of the annual inspection, which was about 31 flight hours before the accident flight. In addition, during the annual inspection when the mechanic installed the ignition switch after repairs, he failed to properly align the switch positions with the marks on the instrument panel placard.
WORLD AVIATION NEWS
Boeing 737 MAX AD in the ‘near future’
The FAA is set to announce a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on the Boeing 737 MAX that will precede an Airworthiness Directive (AD) that will set out the terms of changes to be made before the airliner can return to service, centering on design changes and crew procedures. The agency has set a 45-day comment period, though it has not said exactly when the NPRM will be published. Regardless of when, the FAA says it will ‘retain its authority to issue airworthiness certificates and export certificates for all new 737 MAX airplanes manufactured since the grounding. The FAA will perform in-person, individual reviews of these aircraft. The agency continues to follow a robust certification process. In addition to the standard FAA certification team, the 737 MAX Technical Advisory Board (TAB) continues to provide valuable review and consultation. The FAA admits that there are still several open items beyond the NPRM, gathering comments and finally issuing the AD. Among them: a review of proposed flight training for crews ‘based on the design change and crew procedures.’ The FAA will also be conducting a final review of Boeing’s design documents.
Wrapping up the notice, the FAA says that it ‘will not speculate when the work will be completed. The agency continues to follow a deliberate process and will take the time it needs to thoroughly review Boeing’s work. We will lift the grounding order only after FAA safety experts are satisfied that the aircraft meets certification standards.’
Meanwhile, the Chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Peter DeFazio, has sent a letter to FAA Administrator Steve Dickson requesting the results of a safety survey the agency committed surrounding oversight of the Organization Designation Authorization (ODA) programme. In particular, DeFazio, while emphasising that a strong culture inside the FAA is necessary to be sure it maintains control and oversight of the ODA programme, has specifically requested a copy of the survey, raw survey data and ‘analytical products that pertain to the survey results, including power-point presentations, memorandums, reports, studies, statistical analyses or any other records.’ In his request, DeFazio said that the survey represented ‘positive steps,’ but the ‘results must be thoroughly analysed and properly implemented.’ Dickson has until 3 August to comply.
EAG proposes electric airliner
The Electric Aviation Group (EAG) has announced a proposal for a 70-seat hybrid-electric airliner, in what amounts to ‘going big’ in next-gen regional airliners. According to the company, ‘Whilst a number of small electric and hybrid-electric aircraft, up to 19 seats, have been proposed, their limited range and small capacity will make it difficult for an airline to deploy them on profitable routes in sufficient numbers to have a measurable impact on the environment and make a profit.’ The high-wing regional jet, with a pair of turboprop engines and two electric booster motors, could be ready for service by 2028.
EAG, a UK-based engineering and development firm, says that its focus is on ‘the key technical and integration challenges facing a larger aircraft and EAG has shown that it is possible to launch regional aircraft with up to 70 seats and ranges up to 1200 nautical miles. Since the majority of commercial flights flown in the World on a daily basis are at ranges less than this there is an unrivalled opportunity for a first mover in this sector.’
Dubbed a ‘disruptive’ design, there are nevertheless few details given about this airliner, though it is touted as potentially ‘whisper-quiet’ and having ‘efficient battery integration.’ Images of the design concept show solar cells along the top of the fuselage. It is said to have both STOL performance and be capable of ‘gear-assisted take-off run,’ which sounds like a lot of fun for ex-naval aviators with carrier experience but maybe not so much for Aunt Marge. The company also says that this will be a ‘future proof’ design able to accommodate technological changes, such as newer, more energy-dense batteries, as well as a switch to all-electric power should those come to fruition.
Pakistan’s Aviation Authority continues to discover / suspend unlicensed pilots
Following the scandal that took place weeks ago when media reports documented the fact that many Pakistani pilots were flying with bogus licences, more fake pilots continue to be uncovered and grounded. So far, media reports suggest that 262 pilots were found to have questionable certifications and put under investigation. Late last week a further 15 pilots have been suspended. Abdul Sattar Khokhar, Spokesman for Pakistan’s Aviation Division confirmed that (at the time) some 262 pilots were identified as possessing fake licenses by a Board of Inquiry and grounded immediately. So far; 28 of those under investigation have had their certificates cancelled. Yet another 93 pilots are being investigated while the remaining 141 cases are under initial investigation and may be concluded within a week or so.
US border patrol agents stop attempted ultra-light smuggling
On Saturday morning El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents assigned to the Calexico Station seized methamphetamine in an ultra-light aircraft smuggling attempt. The incident occurred when Border Patrol agents observed the aircraft flying at a low altitude. Agents responded to the area and located a white duffle bag and a metal basket on a field road. Inside the duffle bag, agents discovered 26 clear plastic containers containing a white crystal-like substance. Agents then transported the basket, the duffle bag and its contents to the Calexico Border Patrol Station for further processing. At the station, agents utilised a Narcotics identifying kit to test the content of the containers. The content tested positive for the characteristics of methamphetamine. The total weight of the methamphetamine was 145.5 pounds with an estimated street value of US$327,375.
Czech Sport Aircraft reported to be insolvent
Media reports filed in the Czech Republic have reported that Czech Sport Aircraft is deeply in debt and reportedly filed for insolvency late last month. This is not the first time this company has run into serious financial trouble but has heretofore recovered from prior skirmishes with financial difficulties. Currently, CSA is reported to owe creditors 62.6 million crowns, which allegedly exceeds its total value. Media reports, based on insolvency documentation, state that it has been proposed that the court declare bankruptcy, while the Regional Court in Brno has already approved the motion to start the process. CSA owes most of its debt to Investfinance Slovakia; nearly 54 million crowns. Investfinance Slovakia has provided loan capital to the company to this point but has apparently refused to extend any more funds under the current circumstances. The company produces popular LSA-type aircraft. hundreds of which have been imported into the US and several into South Africa.
New management at Icon aircraft
Following the departure and lawsuit by Kirk Hawkins and the departure without notice of his replacement, Icon seems to have a new Boss. Jason Huang is the latest President of Icon. In that role, Huang, ‘will oversee all business functions, with a particular focus on maintaining manufacturing excellence, product development and innovation and providing an ownership experience that is second to none.’ Huang has more than 30 years of engineering and management experience in the manufacturing and software industries, with deep experience in product research and development methodologies as well as end-to-end product development, which is an ideal fit for ICON as the company continues to expand. Prior to joining ICON, Huang worked at EMC and OpenText as Head of Cloud Platform Engineering & Operations. He holds a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Queen Mary University of London and a MS and BS in Mechanical Engineering from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China.
Self-flying EHang 216 demonstrates sightseeing trips over East China
EHang has announced that aerial sightseeing trial flights are taking place in Yantai, a coastal city in East China. An EHang 216 took four passengers to the air for aerial sightseeing trips over the sea around the beautiful Fisherman’s Wharf in Yantai city, one of the many AAAA national tourist attraction locations throughout China. The passengers were enthusiastic about their first-ever AAV rides. They commented, “It was amazing. I felt safe throughout the journey. The EHang 216 flew at a steady pace with almost no turbulence. This was my first time to experience such a ‘bird’s eye view’ from the air. I cannot wait to take another trip!” This trial flight event was part of EHang’s world flight tour, which is aimed to demonstrate the reliability and versatility of its passenger-grade AAVs through safe autonomous flights in various commercial use cases, including passenger transportation, aerial sightseeing, air logistics, medical emergency response, etc. EHang’s passenger-grade AAVs have completed thousands of trial and demo flights in 21 cities and six countries, including China, the US, Austria, Netherlands, Qatar and UAE.
The reality of a sad South African situation in aviation
Twice Weekly News from African Pilot
Should you miss out on any edition of APAnews, please visit the website: www.africanpilot.co.za and click on the APAnews link on the front page. All past weekly APAnews publications have been archived on the website.
Until next Monday, please be ‘Serious about flying’.
Athol Franz (Editor)