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 has completed its circulation phase and, but you can always download the August edition or any previous edition from 2020 by clicking on the buttons below. Apart from the Lanseria feature, this bumper edition of 174 pages has more than 34 fully illustrated articles published. It has also become abundantly clear that African Pilot is the only South African aviation publication that has being interacting with its clients and readers on a regular basis throughout the COVID-19 lockdown period.
African Pilot has made significant changes to the August edition
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, the font size has increased by 50%, whilst the number of pages has increased to 174 to accommodate the reader’s experience on digital platforms. 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 within the next month. 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 is 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.
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.
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SOUTH AFRICAN AVIATION NEWS
A very sad day for South African aviation
In the early hours of Tuesday morning well-known and respected EAA member Wayne Giles and his wife Janique were brutally murdered in their home at Fly-Inn Estate. Wayne’s daughter Rachel was also shot in the thigh and I understand that she has recovered from surgery and is not in any further danger. Fortunately, Wayne’s son was sleeping in an upstirs bedroom and was not confronted. Wayne was well-known as the importer of the Bearhawk range of aircraft and one of the planes he built was featured on the cover of African Pilot in 2019. Although at this time the reasons for this brutal double murder are unclear, it seems probable that recent labour difficulties with his employees may have been part of this scenario. Personally, I am devastated by this blatant crime in South Africa where seemingly our country has become the ‘murder capital of the world.’ Right now, being highly emotional I do not want to say too much, but as law abiding South African citizens, we need to take out country back from the criminals that rule us.
The following obituary has been written by Wayne’s long-time friend Captain Karl Jensen
Wayne Giles (58) (EAA 322 member) and his wife Janique were shot and killed in their home at Fly Inn Estate on Tuesday 4 August 2020 shortly after 06h00. Their daughter Rachel in her 20s, recently qualified with a PhD, was shot in the legs and was airlifted to hospital. At the time of writing Rachel was out of the operating theatre in a stable condition. The eldest son Brandon was not injured. Wayne was an industrial refrigeration engineer with interests in South Africa and Mozambique. He was an avid aviation enthusiast. Wayne and Janique built the first home in the Fly Inn Estate village adjoining the runway about 25 years ago. Wayne flew a burgundy coloured Piper Pacer for many years before buying a Cessna 185 which he used for business and pleasure. Wayne kept a herd of thoroughbred Arab horses at the adjacent property to Fly Inn Estate in his registered Guizar Stud enterprise.
After a trip to Oshkosh in 2015, Wayne acquired the Barrows Bearhawk franchise for South Africa. He built a Bearhawk Patrol in eight months. This was followed by a Bearhawk LSA which was intended for use as a taildragger trainer and glider tug although it is a sparkling cross-country performer. Wayne had another pair of Patrols under construction being modified specifically for ‘back-country flying’. There are several other Bearhawks under construction in South Africa.
With my Cessna 170 based at Fly In, I have known the Giles family for more than 25 years. They were substantial citizens. Wayne and Janique leave behind son Brandon and daughter Rachel and will not only be sorely missed by me, but also by so many who are dependent on his refrigeration business and the aviation community in South Africa where he was very well liked.
Rest in peace my dear friends,
Sling Squark news
Sling Squawk August edition and feel free to distribute in newsletters and online:
News from CAASA
Dear CAASA Member,
You are cordially invited to nominate suitable candidates to join the new Phase 1 of CAASA’s Protégé Programme will commence in August 2020.
The criteria for Protégés to be included in the programme are as follows:
• The candidate must be nominated and / or supported by the company they work for
• They must have a mentor (from either inside or outside their company)
• They must be available to attend two 2-hour sessions per month
• They must be perceived to have the talent to grow into more senior positions in the industry
• As far as can be ascertained they must have a passion for the industry
• They must be prepared to be challenged to grow
For further information and nominations kindly contact Tony Frost on the below information.
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Cell: +2783 325 0922
WORLDWIDE ACCIDENTS AND INCIDENTS
Pakistan International Airlines fires 28 pilots with fake licenses
Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) laid off 60 pilots, of which 28 were sacked for holding fake licenses. The decision follows the recent investigation of the local regulator that found 40% of Pakistani pilots to hold dubious flying licences.
In June 2020, in the aftermath of the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (PCAA) study that revealed that 262 out of 860 active Pakistani pilots had not sat the pilot exams themselves, PIA had immediately grounded 150 of its 426 pilots. On 4 August 2020, the flag carrier of Pakistan revealed that 60 pilots were sacked. In addition to the 28 that were dismissed for holding fake credentials, a number of them were fired for unjustified absence or general incompetence. “Recently, two employees involved in corruption within the company were also fired,” a PIA spokesperson told local news.
The results of the PCAA review were published after the crash of PIA Flight PK8303 that claimed the lives of 97 people on 22 May 2020. Early findings pointed at the negligence of the pilots and the lack of adequate reaction from the air traffic controllers.
The European Union Air Safety Agency (EASA) suspended the country’s flag carrier from operating to and from the European Union. The ban came into force on 1 July 2020, for a period of six months. In Vietnam, 27 Pakistani pilots (11 with Vietjet Air and 1 with Jetstar Pacific) were grounded by the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam, pending further investigation. On 10 July 2020, the United States banned Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flights from its airspace, citing ‘serious concern to aviation safety’. On July 15, 2020, the FAA, under the International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) program, found that the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority was not complying with ICAO safety standards. Therefore, the South Asian country was officially downgraded to a Category 2 rating, preventing all operators from flying to and from the United States.
United Nations Antonov An-74 crash in Mali injures eleven people
A transport plane of the United Nations, arriving from Bamako with 11 people on board, made a difficult landing at Gao airport, in Mali. All occupants were injured, including one seriously. The UTAir Cargo Antonov An-74TK-100 freighter, registered RA-74044, was operating for the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in Mali (MINUSMA). It carried out flight UNO52P from Bamako Airport (BKO) to Gao Airport (GAQ) with seven crew members and four United Nations personnel on board.
According to local reports, the aircraft carried out an emergency landing, which resulted in the aircraft exiting the runway into soft ground. While all the other occupants suffered minor injuries, the pilot was seriously injured. Pictures show the fuselage of the freighter sunk into the mud. However, Gao airport administration said the weather could not be blamed for the incident. An investigation was open to establish the circumstances of the event.
The Antonov An-74 is an updated version of the An-72, easily recognisable thanks to its two engines mounted on top of its swept-back wing. That design specificity gives the aircraft improved short take-off and landing (STOL) capabilities that are particularly appreciated in a contested environment. RA-74044 belongs to UTAir Cargo, a subsidiary of the Russian airline UTAir and was chartered by the United Nations.
NTSB preliminary report: Hiller UH 12D
On 17 July 2020, a Hiller UH-12D helicopter, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Mehama, Oregon. The pilot was fatally injured. There were no witnesses to the accident. The support truck operator reported that the helicopter departed from the truck and flew towards the next field. Shortly after departing the truck operator heard the pilot report over the radio that he was ‘going down.’ The helicopter impacted patch of tall trees in between Christmas tree fields. The helicopter came to rest upside down at the base of a tree. A post impact fire ensued and completely consumed the cabin area and engine compartment. The trees slightly west of the accident site were topped. The operator reported that the turbine section of the engine had been removed and reinstalled three times in the past month due to continued problems with the engine. After final repairs, about a week before the accident, the helicopter was returned to service.
NTSB preliminary report: Boeing B75
On 5 July 2020, a Boeing B75, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Chino, California. The pilot and passenger were not injured. The pilot reported that during a landing roll on runway 26R in a tailwheel equipped airplane, at a groundspeed of about 25 miles per hour, the left wings ‘dipped’ and he applied control inputs to counteract. The pilot stated that despite his control inputs along with a momentary application of power, he was unable to correct the movement and the lower left wing struck the ground. Shortly after, the airplane veered sharply to the right and exited the runway. Subsequently, the left main landing gear collapsed and the airplane came to rest upright. Post-accident examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector revealed that the fuselage was structurally damaged.
NTSB preliminary report: Vans RV-8
On 24 July 2020, a Vans RV-8 was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Tehachapi Airport (TSP), Tehachapi, California. The private pilot was fatally injured. A witness reported that he had just finished landing and he stopped to watch two airplanes coming in to land. The first airplane was the accident airplane, he observed it touch down onto the runway tailwheel first. The airplane then oscillated between its tailwheel and main landing gear a few times before it tipped up onto the left main gear. The airplane turned toward the right edge of the runway and appeared to slow. The witness reported that he turned away because he thought the pilot finished landing. But when he looked back a few seconds later, he observed a cloud of dirt as the pilot abruptly reapplied power. The engine coughed a ‘number of times’ before running smoothly. The airplane lifted off quickly but made a ‘perceivably slow’ turn to a left crosswind. The nose of the airplane was ‘alarmingly’ high; the left turn steepened as the airplane flew behind some trees. A couple seconds later the witness heard the engine ‘cut out,’ and almost immediately thereafter he heard the impact.
The pilot of the second airplane reported that the two airplanes took off from Whiteman airport and flew in very close formation to TSP. Upon arriving at TSP, the accident airplane flew a straight in approach to land onto runway 29 with the second airplane following. The accident pilot’s approach speed looked ‘OK’. When the accident airplane touched down, it appeared as if it was having ‘directional control issues’ on the runway. The airplane was along the right edge of the runway when the accident pilot transmitted that he was ‘going around.’ At that moment, the second pilot observed a brief cloud of dust. The second pilot landed his airplane and when he rolled to a stop, he observed the accident airplane about 30 degrees left of the runway heading at about 150-200 feet. The nose of the airplane was up, but it did not look like it was accelerating; more like it was descending. Shortly before impact, the airplane disappeared behind the buildings nose up with the wings wobbling.
NTSB preliminary report: Bell UH1H
On 7 July 2020, a Bell / Garlick UH-1H helicopter was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Payson, Arizona. The pilot was fatally injured. The helicopter was owned by Airwest Helicopters LLC and operated by the United States Forest Service at the time of the accident. According to witnesses, the helicopter was transporting supplies using a long line for a hotshot firefighting crew that were repositioning on the ground. The pilot transported three loads to the new destination uneventfully prior to the accident and had been using an indirect route to the north to avoid a fire area. Whilst transporting the fourth load, witnesses observed the helicopter begin to fly erratically while enroute to its destination. During this time, a witness stated that he observed the helicopter enter a high nose-up pitch attitude and the external payload began to swing. The helicopter then displayed irregular movements for several seconds before the external payload settled and the helicopter appeared to stabilise. However, after about three seconds, multiple witnesses observed the helicopter wobble and bank erratically before it entered a steep nose up attitude and then descended rapidly. The witnesses did not observe the helicopter on fire during the accident flight, nor did the pilot report any anomalies over the helicopter crew’s common air-to-ground radio frequency or any other assigned frequencies for the fire. The helicopter wreckage came to rest about 0.5 nm north of its drop off destination and was mostly consumed by post-crash fire. All major structural components of the helicopter were accounted for at the accident site. The helicopter’s external payload was found 123 feet southeast of the main wreckage.
WORLD AVIATION NEWS
Despite damages, Beirut airport continues operating normally
Beirut-Rafic Hariri International Airport’s (BEY) building sustained damage by the massive ammonium nitrate explosion that levelled Beirut port and caused over 100 casualties on 4 August 2020. Despite this it is reported that operations were not interrupted. According to information posted on Facebook group Lebanese Plane Spotters, the airport windows were shattered and some light structures collapsed. The airport is located some 8.5 kilometres from the dock where the explosion happened. The next confirmed departure occurred at 19h40, an hour-and-a-half after the explosion and no incoming flights are reported to have diverted. According to Flightradar24 data several flights should have been taking off and landing just minutes after the event, but there has been no confirmation of their delays so far. Meanwhile, Lebanon’s Middle East Airlines has not sustained any damage to its aircraft parked at the airport and will continue its operations.
How the Boeing 737 MAX backlog shrunk
There is no such aircraft in the history of the industry as polarising as the Boeing 737 MAX. The narrow-body promised to change the game of the single-aisle segment, bringing unprecedented economic specifications against its main competition. But the two fatal crashes in Indonesia in Ethiopia turned the name of the aircraft upside-down, as passengers swayed away from it. Customers have too, as the backlog diminished in size without Boeing delivering any aircraft.
From lessors to such major customers as Norwegian, the Seattle-manufactured aircraft lost its favour amongst customers as Boeing still struggles to re-certify the jet. Although according to David Calhoun, the president and chief executive officer of Boeing, the company aims to start delivering the aircraft in Q4 2020, the jet would be out of service for more than a year and a half since its grounding in March 2019. “Based on our latest assessment, we now expect the necessary regulatory approvals will be obtained in time to support the resumption of deliveries during the fourth quarter,” stated Calhoun during Boeing’s Q2 2020 earnings call.
On the other hand, the prolonged grounding turned into a blessing-in-disguise, as the COVID-19 crisis forced airlines to downsize on a massive scale. But how has the backlog for the narrow body changed over the past year, as the plane sat parked throughout airports across the world?
Virgin Atlantic files for bankruptcy in the United States
Virgin Atlantic has filed for bankruptcy protection concerning its activities in the United States while it is still waiting for approval for its rescue plan of £1.2 billion announced in July 2020. The British-based company filed for Chapter 15 bankruptcy protection in a New York court on 4 August 2020. This will prevent its American assets to be seized by creditors while Virgin Atlantic figures out a way to raise enough funds to continue operating.
Virgin Atlantic gradually resumed flying from its London-Heathrow base (LHR) to the United States and Asia from 20 July 2020, after a three-month break. After both the United Kingdom government and its main shareholder Delta Air Lines had refused to assist the airline financially, Virgin Atlantic hoped to be out of the woods when it announced a £1.2 billion ($1.57 billion) lifeline from private investors in July 2020. The airline plans to cut annual costs by $280 million and intends to lay off more than 3,000 workers. But with the arrangement still not in action as the creditors are set to deliberate on 25 August 2020, a lawyer of the company declared in a hearing that it could run out of cash by September 2020.
In April 2020, Virgin Australia, another Branson-owned airline, entered administration due to the financial woes brought by the COVID-19 pandemic. On 5 August 2020, it revealed a restructuring plan that includes mass layoffs, a fleet recompositing and discontinuation of its subsidiary Tigerair Australia.
Embraer pushes back the introduction of the E175-E2 to 2023
In a financial statement released on 5 August 2020, Embraer reported second-quarter losses and a steep drop in revenue, yet the company indicates that it remains in ‘a stable overall position.’ However, the introduction of the E175-E2 was delayed due to the current situation in the market. Embraer reported $198 million net loss in Q2 2020 and a 61% decline in revenue compared to the same quarter of the previous year.
Differences in the number of aircraft delivered were also evident, as in Q2 2019, 51 jets were handed over to customers compared to the mere result of 17 a year later. Executive jet sales were higher in Q2 2020, compared to the corresponding period in 2019. Furthermore, while the development of the E175-E2 continues, the Brazilian manufacturer pushed back its introduction into 2023. “The Company believes that the E175-E2 will still be available with more than adequate time to enter into service in the commercial aviation market to meet market demand for the jet,” reads the financial report. Embraer attributed the reduction in aircraft deliveries to the terminated partnership with Boeing back on 25 April 2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the global market.
Embraer’s KC-390 military systems development for the Brazilian Air Force (FAB) was also delayed. However, the report did not indicate any timeline related to the KC-390s systems. As of 30 June 2020, the Brazilian based aircraft manufacturer reported $1.9 billion cash in its possession and $6 billion in liquid assets. Embraer also has a cumulative backlog of 314 commercial aircraft on order, totalling to $15.4 billion.
MC-21-300 successfully achieves water operation tests
Irkut Corporation ran an evaluation of the MC-21-300 prototype behaviour over water. The aircraft proved safe to operate on a wet runway. During the period from 16 to 22 July 2020, the MC-21-300 aircraft performed 29 runs and three taxing on water at speeds from 10 to 150 knots (1 knot = 1.852 km/hour) at various configurations of mechaniszation and power plant modes, including the use of engines thrust reversal. The tests were carried out on the Ulyanovsk Baratayevka Airport (ULV), where a ‘pool’ of more than 70 m long and more than 20 m wide was arranged. Parameters of the ‘pool’ provided a normalised water depth in accordance with Russian and international requirements, which are established for these types of tests. In the process of testing the possibility of safe movement on a wet runway in a wide range of speeds without any failure of marching and auxiliary power plants, as well as other systems and equipment of the aircraft were confirmed. In addition, the tests found that the MC-21-300 aircraft is steadily moving and retains control on the runway covered with water.
The course of testing was recorded by a complex of onboard measurements of the aircraft and a system of video cameras installed on the ground and on the aircraft. The tests were conducted as part of the MC-21-300 aircraft certification programme with the participation of representatives of authorised certification centres.
The Irkut MC-21 is Russia’s answer to the A320neo and the Boeing 737 MAX. It is expected to have a range of 5,900 kilometres, slightly less than the maximum range of the Airbus counterpart (6,300 kilometres) and the Boeing 737 MAX-8 (6,570 kilometres). Initially powered by Pratt & Whitney PW1400G-JM engines, the airline is expected to also have an option for Aviadvigatel PD-14 in the future. The Russian-made engines are expected to join the certification programme with the fifth test frame that was completed in December 2019. The aircraft will be offered in two configurations: in a regular two-class layout with 163 seats and with the super-dense interior designed for 211 seats. It is expected to enter service with its launch customer Aeroflot in 2022.
Swedish Medevac PC-24 completes successful maiden flight
The first of six PC-24s for the Swedish Air Ambulance Organisation took off from Buochs Airport for its maiden flight on 22 July 2020. Sporting the national colours of Sweden (blue and yellow) the Super Versatile Jet will cut a dash across Swedish skies. Less than a year after the agreement between the Kommunalförbundet Svenskt Ambulansflyg (KSA) and Pilatus was signed, the maiden flight of the first Swedish medevac PC-24 marks an important milestone in the programme. Despite the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Pilatus still managed to meet the tight production schedule. As an air ambulance service organisation, KSA will provide advanced medical assistance and access to fast, professional aeromedical care, to everyone living in Sweden. The full KSA fleet will comprise six PC-24s, with all aircraft are scheduled for delivery in 2021. The maiden flight heralds the start of numerous flight tests to be performed by Pilatus. On completion of these tests, the PC-24s for KSA will be transferred to Aerolite AG, the specialist Swiss company appointed to oversee the installation of the medevac interior.
US Airline Pilots Association calls for FedEx to suspend operations in Hong Kong
The FedEx Express unit of the Airline Pilots Association (ALPA) passed a resolution on 23 July that calls for a suspension of the company’s operations in Hong Kong, due to circumstances related to COVID-19. In a statement Dave Chase FedEx ALPA master executive council chairman said: “In Hong Kong, recent government mandates regarding COVID-19 testing have created unacceptable conditions for pilots, including our Hong Kong-based pilots and their families.” According to the release, pilots who test positive for the virus are required to be treated in government-selected hospitals, with as many as five patients to a room, with one shared bathroom. Any pilot, or family member of a pilot, who has been exposed to COVID-19, is placed in a government quarantine facility with what the ALPA claims includes ‘sparse provisions’ for up to 14 days.
It was reported that three FedEx pilots who tested positive for COVID-19, but are asymptomatic, were required to stay in government hospitals for up to 10 days. Several pilots who tested negative but were in close contact with someone who tested positive, were placed into government camps under ‘extremely difficult conditions,’ Chase said. When contacted about the issues in Hong Kong, a FedEx spokesperson provided the following statement:
“The safety and well-being of our team members continues to be our top priority. The situation in Hong Kong is dynamic as the Hong Kong government adapts its policies to prevent a resurgence of the virus there. We are fully engaged with government authorities to support our crew members in situations requiring medical treatment or self-isolation in Hong Kong. Our operations in Asia Pacific are vital to our global network and we are proud of the way our entire FedEx team has continued to operate through difficult circumstances to keep the global supply chain moving around the world.”
Next on Airport Show Insights is another exciting glimpse into the Role of Remote Digital Towers in shaping the future of Air Traffic Management. Join us online on 11 August at 2PM UAE time. Sign up today: https://bit.ly/33pJIZF
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 week, please be ‘Serious about flying’.
Athol Franz (Editor)