25 March 2010

First Female Pilot Selected For Red Arrows Display Team. Motto *ECLAT*

Flight Lieutenant Kirsty Moore, 32 yrs.,has joined the team, based at Raf Scampton- Lincs. home of the famous 617 squadron-The Dam Busters.

Flt Lt Moore is a local Lincolnshire girl, from Stamford, last station was Raf Marham in Norfolk, near Kings Lynn., joining the Royal Air Force in 1998. Raf Scampton is situated just north of Lincoln on the A15.

It is believed she will take up position RED THREE.

Her father Robbie is a retired Tornado navigator,she has been married for 4 years to husband Nicky who works as a flying instructor at Raf Valley,anglesey, Wales. Squadron motto is Eclat-meaning Excellence. Red Arrows was formed up in late 1964. The name is an amalgation of 2 aerobatic teams-the Black Arrows and the Red Pelicans. The RAFAT has 13 aircraft., 9 pilots, and a Support team of 91 called The Blues (they wear blue flying suits).

see Raf Scampton home page = http://www.raf.mod.uk/rafscampton/

see Red Arrows web page = http://www.raf.mod.uk/reds/

16 March 2010

20 Hours To JFK From LA The Trip From Hell On Virgin America Airlines

Stuck for hours on a plane!

The Los Angeles to JFK flight was diverted in high winds due to Saturday's nor'easter, which led to the airport slowdown of JFK in New York, forcing the plane to divert 90 miles north at Stewart Airport in Newburgh, where it landed at 5:15 p.m. and that's where passengers sat stranded for four-and-a-half hours.

Virgin American flight 404 left from LAX heading to JFK at 7am Saturday morning, but for passengers on-board the total time, would not be 5 1/2 hours to their destination, it would take 16 hours and change and more delays.
you would think considering the past delays, Virgin America would have had an alternate plan. questions will be raised regarding why the Virgin America flight even departed in the first place considering that Departure Management procedures where active early in the morning from JFK and many of the major airports in the Northeast corridor.

"Because of 60-mph winds [in New York], the plane was forced to circle JFK until it was finally diverted to Stewart Airport in Newburgh — 90 miles north — for a 5:15 p.m. landing.There, the plane remained on the tarmac until close to midnight, passengers say. The airline said the wait was more like 4½ hours" as stated by a FAA spokes person.

"The problem started when the Stewart International Supervisor came on board and told the captain and the flight attendants that no one's getting off this plane," Martin said.
David Martin films a 16-hour Virgin America flight from LAX to JFK.

David Martin is back at the Tribeca's headquarters of his video social networking company, Kontain.com. (He supplied the video.) In fact, it was on his website where he posted the video of his horrible weekend experience aboard Virgin America flight 404.

Passengers became restless and hungry after they were forced to each just four Pringles each with half a cup of water, while one passenger suffering from a panic attack had to be escorted from the plane.

JetBlue, has facilities at Steward Airport heard about the problem flight and said they would take passengers for free on a 2 hour bus ride to JFK airport that would have them there about 3am.

Some passengers did eventually exit the plane. In a statement, the Port Authority said, "Port Authority Operations at Stewart Airport finally offered assistance directly to the pilot and crew and made all resources available to aid the delayed passengers."

Furthermore, we were told the pilot refused the staff's plea to leave the tarmac and pull up to a gate so passengers could come inside the terminal which makes no sense considering it sounds like the airport management gave in to let the passengers off the plane. I'll be interested to hear what the story behind this was considering the stories are flying from everywhere!

Virgin America, meantime, issued its own statement and accepted blame for what happened:

"We wish to further apologize for our handling of the delay. We pride ourselves on putting the well-being of our travelers first and making sure that, in stressful situations, we put our guests at ease. We clearly failed this on your flight."

The US Department of Transportation now wants more information from Virgin America as to why passengers were left stranded on the tarmac for so long.

That's because a new rule, which takes effect at the end of April, orders U.S. airlines to allow passengers off the plane after a wait of three hours.

Along with the apology, Virgin America offered its passengers a full refund.

Plane Makes Emergency Landing And Kills Jogger By Accident

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – A 38-year-old father of two was jogging and listening to his iPod when he was hit from behind and killed by a small plane making an emergency landing on the beach, officials said Tuesday.

Robert Gary Jones of Woodstock, Ga., died instantly Monday evening when he was hit by the single-engine plane, which had lost its propeller, said Beaufort County Coroner Ed Allen. The pilot's vision was blocked by oil on the windshield.

Jones apparently did not see or hear the plane, which was "basically gliding," the coroner said.
FAA records show the Experimental Lancair IV-P plane was registered to Edward I. Smith of Chesapeake, Va.

Smith was on the beach with his plane Tuesday and confirmed he was the pilot. He said he didn't want to talk about the crash and offered few details.
"I've got a lot of issues going on right now. I've got a plane that's all torn up. And I've got a young man that I killed," he said.

Authorities said there was also a passenger on board but did not identify him or her.
The plane started leaking oil at about 13,000 feet and tried originally to make it to Hilton Head Airport, said fire and rescue spokeswoman Joheida Fister.

The oil on the windshield blocked Smith's vision and he told authorities the propeller came off. When he tried to land on the beach near the Hilton Head Marriott Resort and Spa, the plane hit Jones and came to rest a little farther down the beach, Fister said.

The plane was still on the beach Tuesday afternoon. Waves lapped against it and the tail was attached to an anchor with a rope so the tide wouldn't pull it out to sea. The waves had washed away any sign of it skidding across the sand.

Yellow crime scene tape stretched from the water to the dunes to keep people away. Tourists walked up to the tape, gawking and snapping pictures. Other than the missing propeller, the plane appeared undamaged.

The plane left Orlando, Fla., at 4:45 p.m. and was headed for Virginia, Fister said. The four-seater plane has a turbine engine, can be built from a kit and can fly up to 370 mph, according to the Lancair Web site. The IV-P model has a pressurized cabin.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board were investigating, Fister said.
An FAA spokeswoman referred inquiries to the NTSB.

9 Passengers Fall Sick Due To Foul Odor On US Airways Flight To Jamaica

Flight from Charlotte, N.C., to Jamaica forced to return to gate

9 people on board a US Airways flight from Charlotte, North Carolina (KCLT) to Montego Bay Jamaica were taken to the hospital Tuesday after they became sick due to a "foul odor" on the plane, officials said.
The passengers were complaining of symptoms consistent with exposure to toxic fumes, the NBC-affiliated WCNC news channel reported, citing medics. One of the patients was a US Airways employee.

Flight 985 was scheduled to depart Charlotte Douglas Airport (KCLT) at 9:35 a.m. and was due to go to Montego Bay (MBJ/MKJS) on the Caribbean island.
The Federal Aviation Administration said that there were reports of a bad smell shortly after the Boeing 767 left the gate.

The plane pushed back from the gate and taxied out on to the ramp when several passengers on board complained of a foul-smelling odor. The flight attendants notified the pilots of the problem and the aircraft returned to the gate and those persons were checked out by medics.

The plane did not get airborne so declaring an in-flight emergency never happened. The pilots checked-in with ground control to taxi and then advised them of the problem and emergency services on the field were notified. Mecklenburg County ambulance spokesman Jeff Keith said nine people were taken to Carolinas Medical Center, but added their conditions did not appear to be life-threatening.

This is not the first time this has happened with US Airways. In January, 15 people were treated after complaining of sickness associated with a foul odor on a US Airways Boeing 767 flight, WCNC reported. It's possible that this was the same exact airplane. I haven't been able to confirm this as of yet but reports indicate that maintenance logs obtained by local WCNC showed that plane experienced a similar problem on Dec. 28 and Dec. 30 on flights to San Juan, Puerto Rico.

US Airways' Service Difficulty Report filed with the Federal Aviation Administration says "a very strong odor smelling like wet socks and/or dirty feet circulated through the passenger cabin and flight deck" during Flight 1568 on December 28 from Charlotte to San Juan, Puerto Rico and another flight on Dec 30 On Jan. 5, when it was cleared for flight everything seemed to operationg normally then it happened again.

After the January 16th incident, US Airways took its 767 out of service for maintenance work. When it returned to the air on January 21, US Airways reported to the FAA "a scorched odor...like a gym or locker room" filled the aircraft. Maintenance found no problems with the plane and it was cleared for flight.

On Jan. 16, Flight 1041 from St. Thomas was the next incident flight. The crew of Flight 1041 fell victim to a "fume event," the third time in three weeks that the aircraft, a Boeing 767-2B7, tail number 251, suffered contamination of its cabin air. The flight was going from from St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands (STT/TIST) where it was met by ambulances when it landed in Charlotte (KCLT) and passengers and crew members complained of headaches and nausea they attributed to a suspicious smell.

Crew members reported trouble breathing, itchy eyes and stomach cramps. Two days later on the same route a "foul odor" entered the cabin. "Passengers and flight attendants were feeling faint and nauseous," according to the Service Difficulty Report.
US Airways tells CNN hydraulic fluid was released into the ventilation system on the two December flights. That fluid – Skydrol – is a known irritant to the respiratory tract.

Eight passengers were treated on the scene. Seven crew members were taken to the hospital, where they were treated and released. One flight attendant has since returned to the air, while the other crew members remain out on disability.

04 March 2010

Flight Attendant Falls From Plane

A Qantas flight attendant has fallen from a plane and hit the tarmac while shutting the doors before take-off at an airport near Uluru.

The flight attendant was trying to close the doors of the plane when she stumbled and fell at Yulara airport, Northern Territory Police Superintendent Bob Harrison told ABC Radio.

"All the passengers were seated in the plane," he said.

"The attendant was shutting the aircraft doors ready for take-off when the ground staff pulled the ramp out - the stairway ramp - and unfortunately the attendant lost her footing, falling head first from the aircraft around about three metres to the ground below."

The flight attendant was taken to the local medical centre and then flown to Alice Springs with minor injuries.

SOP at Quantas says that the flight attendants do not actually close the door and early reports say the flight attendant was closing the door in some fashion and may have not been following company policy.