Indonesia certifies N219 regional turboprop

An N219 test aircraft in 2017

State-owned Indonesian Aerospace (IAe), also known as Dirgantara Indonesia, has received certification for its N219 commuter aircraft. A type certificate was officially issued by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation on 18 December, the transport ministry said in a statement on 28 December. 

The ministry plans to order the small regional turboprop for flight calibration purposes and for providing air transport services to remote regions, among others. It states: “The Minister of Transportation hopes that this achievement will motivate Dirgantara Indonesia to continue to innovate, because technical improvements are still needed in the next generation of aircraft so that they can compete with foreign-made aircraft and have high [commercial value].” The same statement indicates that the aircraft has been undergoing certification since February 2014 and the three-year validity on the certification period was extended twice, on 8 February 2017 and 11 February 2020. 

According to the ministry, each aircraft is fitted with two Pratt & Whitney Canada’s PT6A engines and can carry up to 19 passengers. Following the type certification, IAe has plans for the N219 to enter the commercialisation phase in 2021, it states in a 28 December evening update posted on its official Twitter account. English-language media Jakarta Globe reported on 11 December that the aircraft type completed its final test flight that day. According to the report, Indonesia’s minister for research and technology Bambang Brodjonegoro said the final test flight would clear the way for a commercial aircraft licence for the N219 to fly commercial routes in the country. 

Cirium fleets data shows that IAe has two prototypes. PK-XDT (MSN 001) was rolled out in November 2015 and launched its first flight in August 2017. PK-XDP (MSN 002) was rolled out in September 2018 and its first flight was in December that year. The local government of the semi-autonomous Aceh province most recently showed interest in the programme, placing in December 2019 an LOI to order four examples. 

Domestic airline Aviastar Mandiri has by far shown the greatest support for the programme, placing in October 2018 an LOI for 20 orders, adding to an April 2015 LOI for 20 orders and 10 options. Other LOIs – for eight orders by national private charterer Air Born and 10 orders and options for five by for Jakarta-based Trigana Air – also date back to April 2015. Defunct airlines Merpati and Nusantara Buana Air had lapsed LOIs to order 20 examples each, placed in 2011 and 2012, respectively. Nusantara also had options for another 10.


For Airlines, Dry Ice in Vaccine Transport Demands Special Attention

A worker with dry ice at a Pfizer plant in Puurs, Belgium. The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine must be stored at minus-70 degrees Celsius.

The refrigerant needed to maintain some doses during distribution is regulated as a dangerous good for aviation transport
The large amounts of dry ice needed to speed Covid-19 vaccine candidates to pandemic-weary populations will call for special attention from airlines and safety regulators.
Dry ice, the solid form of carbon dioxide, is a critical part of plans to transport the vaccine developed by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE, which must be kept at ultracold temperatures. Pfizer expects to ship 50 million doses world-wide by the end of the year. The vaccine was the first to be authorized in the West, receiving clearance for emergency use in the U.K. last week. It is under review by the Food and Drug Administration in the U.S.
Widely used as a refrigerant, dry ice is classified as a dangerous good by the International Civil Aviation Organization and the U.S. Department of Transportation because it changes to gas form as it breaks down, a process called sublimation. Shippers must use ventilated containers that allow the gas to release, to prevent pressure from building up and rupturing the packaging.
The gas can also displace oxygen in confined spaces with poor ventilation, creating a suffocation hazard, though the risk is minimal under normal cabin ventilation, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.
“If oxygen levels get down below 19%, that could cause a hazard to people and animals,” said Delmer Billings, technical director for the Dangerous Goods Advisory Council, a nonprofit trade group that promotes safe transportation of hazardous materials. “If you deplete oxygen sufficiently, it could cause unconsciousness, even death,” he added.
Air carriers involved in vaccine transport efforts are asking aviation regulators to increase the amount of dry ice they are allowed to carry on flights hauling vaccines as they work with drugmakers and governments to set up distribution channels. Restrictions on the amount of the material on planes are typically based on aircraft ventilation rates and factors such as the size of the plane and whether it is used for passenger or cargo flights, said Robert Coyle, senior vice president of pharma and healthcare strategy at freight forwarder Kuehne + Nagel International AG.
On Thursday, Delta Air Lines Inc. said it had received FAA approval to double the allowed load of dry ice on its Airbus A330 and A350 wide-body jets, and six times the prior allowed load for shipments using a special suitcase-sized storage container that Pfizer designed.
Delta has done trial runs with vaccine cargoes from Europe and to Latin America, and within the U.S., all on cargo-only flights.
United Airlines Holdings Inc. secured FAA approval last month to boost its dry-ice allowance to 15,000 pounds from 3,000 pounds, for chartered cargo flights between Brussels International Airport and Chicago O’Hare International Airport to support distribution of the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine. A United spokeswoman said the airline “has effective procedures in place to ensure we safely handle all the hazardous materials we are permitted to carry on board our aircraft.”
Extremely cold with a surface temperature of about minus-78 degrees Celsius, dry ice has long been used to ship medicine, pharmaceutical products and perishable food such as meat or ice cream.
“When packaged and stored properly, it poses no risk,” said Rafael Teixeira, president of World Courier and ICS, a specialty logistics provider owned by drug distributor AmerisourceBergen Corp.
The scale of the Covid-19 vaccine distribution effort is unprecedented, involving billions of doses with strict temperature-control requirements that are expected to strain cold-chain shipping networks.
The Pfizer and BioNTech shots must be kept at minus-70 degrees Celsius—colder than the average annual temperature at the South Pole and lower than some other vaccine candidates require. Moderna Inc.’s shot, the other leading front-runner, must be shipped and stored at a below-freezing temperature that most home or medical freezers can accommodate.
Makers of dry ice are bracing for an expected demand surge. Logistics providers have been building “freezer farms” with hundreds of portable units that store pharmaceuticals at ultralow temperatures.
Plymouth, Minn.-based Pelican BioThermal LLC, which makes packaging that typically uses engineered materials to maintain temperatures, has tested and approved the use of dry ice in its systems to provide the sub-frozen temperatures needed to maintain the efficacy of Covid-19 vaccines. The company is also ramping up global production of its large shipping containers that can hold full pallets of goods on rising demand from pharmaceutical companies looking to ship vaccines.
“There are a lot of investments b made right now to get this done,” said Ira Smith, director of Pelican’s rental program in the Americas.


Chuck Yeager, 1st to break sound barrier, dies at 97

GRASS VALLEY, Calif. (AP) — Retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Charles “Chuck” Yeager, the World War II fighter pilot ace and quintessential test pilot who showed he had the “right stuff” when in 1947 he became the first person to fly faster than sound, has died. He was 97.

Yeager died Monday (7 Dec 2020), his wife, Victoria Yeager, said on his Twitter account. “It is w/ profound sorrow, I must tell you that my life love General Chuck Yeager passed just before 9pm ET. An incredible life well lived, America’s greatest Pilot, & a legacy of strength, adventure, & patriotism will be remembered forever.”

Yeager’s death is “a tremendous loss to our nation,” NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said in a statement.
“Gen. Yeager’s pioneering and innovative spirit advanced America’s abilities in the sky and set our nation’s dreams soaring into the jet age and the space age. He said, ‘You don’t concentrate on risks. You concentrate on results. No risk is too great to prevent the necessary job from getting done,’” Bridenstine said.
“In an age of media-made heroes, he is the real deal,” Edwards Air Force Base historian Jim Young said in August 2006 at the unveiling of a bronze statue of Yeager.

He was “the most righteous of all those with the right stuff,” said Maj. Gen. Curtis Bedke, commander of the Air Force Flight Test Center at Edwards.
Yeager, from a small town in the hills of West Virginia, flew for more than 60 years, including piloting an X-15 to near 1,000 mph (1,609 kph) at Edwards in October 2002 at age 79.
“Living to a ripe old age is not an end in itself. The trick is to enjoy the years remaining,” he said in “Yeager: An Autobiography.”

“I haven’t yet done everything, but by the time I’m finished, I won’t have missed much,” he wrote. “If I auger in (crash) tomorrow, it won’t be with a frown on my face. I’ve had a ball.”
On Oct. 14, 1947, Yeager, then a 24-year-old captain, pushed an orange, bullet-shaped Bell X-1 rocket plane past 660 mph to break the sound barrier, at the time a daunting aviation milestone.
“Sure, I was apprehensive,” he said in 1968. “When you’re fooling around with something you don’t know much about, there has to be apprehension. But you don’t let that affect your job.”

The modest Yeager said in 1947 he could have gone even faster had the plane carried more fuel. He said the ride “was nice, just like riding fast in a car.”
Yeager nicknamed the rocket plane, and all his other aircraft, “Glamorous Glennis” for his wife, who died in 1990.
Yeager’s feat was kept top secret for about a year when the world thought the British had broken the sound barrier first.
“It wasn’t a matter of not having airplanes that would fly at speeds like this. It was a matter of keeping them from falling apart,” Yeager said.

Sixty-five years later to the minute, on Oct. 14, 2012, Yeager commemorated the feat, flying in the back seat of an F-15 Eagle as it broke the sound barrier at more than 30,000 feet (9,144 meters) above California’s Mojave Desert.
His exploits were told in Tom Wolfe’s book “The Right Stuff,” and the 1983 film it inspired.
Yeager was born Feb. 23, 1923, in Myra, a tiny community on the Mud River deep in an Appalachian hollow about 40 miles southwest of Charleston. The family later moved to Hamlin, the county seat. His father was an oil and gas driller and a farmer.

“What really strikes me looking over all those years is how lucky I was, how lucky, for example, to have been born in 1923 and not 1963 so that I came of age just as aviation itself was entering the modern era,” Yeager said in a December 1985 speech at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum.
“I was just a lucky kid who caught the right ride,” he said.

Yeager enlisted in the Army Air Corps after graduating from high school in 1941. He later regretted that his lack of a college education prevented him from becoming an astronaut.
He started off as an aircraft mechanic and, despite becoming severely airsick during his first airplane ride, signed up for a program that allowed enlisted men to become pilots.
Yeager shot down 13 German planes on 64 missions during World War II, including five on a single mission. He was once shot down over German-held France but escaped with the help of French partisans.

After World War II, he became a test pilot beginning at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio.
Among the flights he made after breaking the sound barrier was one on Dec. 12. 1953, when he flew an X-1A to a record of more than 1,600 mph. He said he had gotten up at dawn that day and went hunting, bagging a goose before his flight. That night, he said, his family ate the goose for dinner.
He returned to combat during the Vietnam War, flying several missions a month in twin-engine B-57 Canberras making bombing and strafing runs over South Vietnam.

Yeager also commanded Air Force fighter squadrons and wings, and the Aerospace Research Pilot School for military astronauts.
“I’ve flown 341 types of military planes in every country in the world and logged about 18,000 hours,” he said in an interview in the January 2009 issue of Men’s Journal. “It might sound funny, but I’ve never owned an airplane in my life. If you’re willing to bleed, Uncle Sam will give you all the planes you want.”

When Yeager left Hamlin, he was already known as a daredevil. On later visits, he often buzzed the town.
“I live just down the street from his mother,” said Gene Brewer, retired publisher of the weekly Lincoln Journal. “One day I climbed up on my roof with my 8 mm camera when he flew overhead. I thought he was going to take me off the roof. You can see the treetops in the bottom of the pictures.”

Yeager flew an F-80 under a Charleston bridge at 450 mph on Oct. 10, 1948, according to newspaper accounts. When he was asked to repeat the feat for photographers, Yeager replied: “You should never strafe the same place twice ’cause the gunners will be waiting for you.”
Yeager never forgot his roots and West Virginia named bridges, schools and Charleston’s airport after him.
“My beginnings back in West Virginia tell who I am to this day,” Yeager wrote. “My accomplishments as a test pilot tell more about luck, happenstance and a person’s destiny. But the guy who broke the sound barrier was the kid who swam the Mud River with a swiped watermelon or shot the head off a squirrel before going to school.”
Yeager was awarded the Silver Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal and the Purple Heart.

President Harry S. Truman awarded him the Collier air trophy in December 1948 for his breaking the sound barrier. He also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1985.
Yeager retired from the Air Force in 1975 and moved to a ranch in Cedar Ridge in Northern California where he continued working as a consultant to the Air Force and Northrop Corp. and became well known to younger generations as a television pitchman for automotive parts and heat pumps.

He married Glennis Dickhouse of Oroville, California, on Feb. 26, 1945. She died of ovarian cancer in December 1990. They had four children: Donald, Michael, Sharon and Susan.
Yeager married 45-year-old Victoria Scott D’Angelo in 2003.
On the Net:


Pesawat Citilink yang Tabrak Layang-layang Mendarat Selamat, Kru dan Penumpang Aman

Tim teknik Citilink Indonesia menyingkirkan layang-layang yang tertabrak pesawat yang ingin mendarat di Bandara Adisucipto, Yogyakarta. (Sumber: dok. PT Angkasa Pura I Bandara Adisutjipto via

JAKARTA, KOMPAS.TV – Pesawat Citilink yang mengalami insiden menabrak layang-layang saat melakukan pendaratan di Bandara AdisuciptoYogyakarta turun dangan selamat.

Pesawat dengan nomor penerbangan QZ 1107 jenis ATR 72-600 itu menabrak layangan yang memiliki lebar sekitar 50 sentimeter di bagian landing gear pada Jumat (23/10/2020) sore kemarin.

VP Corporate Secretary & CSR PT Citilink Indonesia Resty Kusandarina menjelaskan sebelum mendarat pilot sudah melakukan komunikasi serta berkoordinasi kepada pihak menara serta menyampaikan kondisi banyaknya layang-layang yang terbang di wilayah area bandara.

Namun karena layang-layang berada di landasan pacu dan sulit untuk dihindari, pilot berusaha agar mendaratkan pesawat dari Bandara Internasional Halim Perdanakusuma, Jakarta itu dengan baik.

“Seluruh kru dan penumpang telah mendarat selamat,” ujar Resty dalam pesannya, Sabtu (24/10/2020).

Resty menambahkan seteleh insiden tersebut, tim teknik Citilink Indonesia telah melakukan pemeriksaan seluruh bagian pesawat secara intensif.

Menurutnya, tidak ada kerusakan pada pesawat tersebut dan laik untuk beroperasi kembali.

“Kami sampaikan terimakasih kepada pihak bandara yang telah memberikan himbauan kepada masyarakat sekitar terhadap bahaya bermain layangan di sekitar area bandara,” ujar Resty.

Pesawat menabrak layang-layang pada pukul 16.46 WIB. Sekitar tiga menit setelah mendarat, layang-layang tersebut ditemukan di roda pesawat.

Kejadian itu tidak mengganggu lalu lintas dan jadwal penerbangan di Bandara Internasional Adisutjipto Yogyakarta.

Petugas sudah menindaklanjuti lebih dalam dan tidak ditemukan kerusakan dan kondisi pesawat dipastikan siap terbang.

Pihak bandara juga telah melakukan sosialisasi dan mengimbau agar masyarakat tidak bermain layangan di kawasan bandara karena dapat mengancam keselamatan penerbangan.


Maskapai Lion Air Digugat Pailit

Pesawat Lion Air Boeing 737-800NG.
Pesawat Lion Air Boeing 737-800NG.(Dokumentasi Rahmad Dwi Putra)

JAKARTA, – Seorang warga bernama Budi Santoso menggugat pailit PT Lion Mentari Airlines atau Lion Air di Pengadilan Negeri (PN) Jakarta Pusat pada 22 Oktober 2020 lalu terkait masalah utang.  Dikutip dari Sistem Informasi Penelusuran Perkara (SIPP), Sabtu (24/10/2020), perkara tersebut diajukan dengan nomor 343/Pdt.Sus- PKPU/2020/PN Niaga Jkt.Pst. Penggugat meminta pengadilan menetapkan Penundaan Kewajiban Pembayaran Utang (PKPU) sementara terhadap Termohon PKPU PT Lion Mentari Airline paling lama 45 hari terhitung sejak putusan a quo diucapkan.

“Mengabulkan Permohonan Penundaan Kewajiban Pembayaran Utang (PKPU) yang diajukan oleh Pemohon PKPU terhadap termohon PKPU dan menyatakan termohon PKPU berada dalam Penundaan Kewajiban Pembayaran Utang,” bunyi petitum yang diajukan Budi Santoso. Pemohon juga meminta pengadilan menunjuk dan mengangkat hakim pengawas dari hakim PN Jakarta Pusat untuk mengawasi proses PKPU terhadap termohon.

Dalam permohonannya itu, Budi Santoso juga menunjuk dan mengangkat Ronald Antony Sirait dari kantor pengacara Sirait, Sitorus, & Associates dan Monang Christmanto Sagala yang berkantor di Hotma Sitompul & Associates sebagai tim pengurus. “Untuk bertindak sebagai tim pengurus untuk mengurus harta termohon PKPU dalam hal termohon PKPU dinyatakan dalam PKPU Sementara dan/atau mengangkat sebagai kurator dalam hal termohon PKPU dinyatakan pailit,” bunyi petikan permohonan perkara. Terakhir, Budi juga memohon agar seluruh biaya perkara dibebankan kepada pihak maskapai tersebut. Sedangkan status perkara dinyatakan dalam penetapan majelis hakim.

Artikel ini telah tayang di dengan judul “Maskapai Lion Air Digugat Pailit”, Klik untuk baca:
Penulis : Muhammad Idris
Editor : Muhammad Idris

One year later: The crash of Flight 3296

A commuter airplane has crashed near the airport in a small Alaska community on the Bering Sea, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019, in Unalaska, Alaska. Freelance photographer Jim Paulin says the crash at the Unalaska airport occurred Thursday after 5 p.m. Paulin says the Peninsula Airways flight from Anchorage to Dutch Harbor landed about 500 feet (152 meters) beyond the airport near the water. (Jim Paulin via AP)
A commuter airplane has crashed near the airport in a small Alaska community on the Bering Sea, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019, in Unalaska, Alaska. Freelance photographer Jim Paulin says the crash at the Unalaska airport occurred Thursday after 5 p.m. Paulin says the Peninsula Airways flight from Anchorage to Dutch Harbor landed about 500 feet (152 meters) beyond the airport near the water. (Jim Paulin via AP)

Twelve months ago, on Oct. 17, 2019, PenAir Flight 3296 overran the runway while landing at the Dutch Harbor airport, resulting in one passenger killed and four others injured. Since then, Ravn Alaska, which owned PenAir along with sister companies Corvus Airlines and Hageland Aviation, declared bankruptcy and auctioned off or sold the bulk of its assets.

Company executives blamed Ravn’s failure on the coronavirus, but on the Flight 3296 anniversary, it is worth considering just what happened to PenAir in the single year it was owned by Ravn, and what we have learned since the accident that exposes problems within the company in the months leading up to the tragedy.

Soon after the accident, the National Transportation Safety Board released an investigative update detailing the flight crew’s minimal experience in the aircraft. Ravn stopped all flights of the Saab 2000 into Unalaska and Alaska Airlines dropped the lucrative Capacity Passenger Agreement (CPA) it had with Ravn. The loss of the CPA, which paid Ravn for the Unalaska flights at “predetermined rates plus a negotiated margin, regardless of the number of passengers on board or the revenue collected,” had serious financial ramifications for the company. Questions raised by the NTSB’s preliminary investigation, however, left Alaska Airlines with little choice.

According to the NTSB’s initial report, and heavily covered in the media, the pilot in command (PIC) for Flight 3296 had an estimated 20,000 hours total flight time, but only 101 hours in the Saab 2000 (the co-pilot, with 1,446 hours total time, had 147 hours in the aircraft). Under PenAir’s previous ownership by the Seybert family, PICs were required to have 300 hours minimum in the Saab 2000 before operating into Dutch Harbor. (Similar requirements have existed for other companies operating at the challenging airfield.)

Based on the PenAir Operations Manual, flight-time minimums could be waived if approved by the company Chief Pilot. While the existence of such a waiver has not been addressed publicly, one month after the accident, the Federal Aviation Administration confirmed that Chief Pilot Crystal Branchaud had been replaced and no longer held a position of operational control with PenAir. The extent to which she or any other management personnel played a role in assigning the PIC to Flight 3296 will likely receive serious attention in the accident’s final report.

Another area of significant interest for investigators will be the flight crew’s decision to land in turbulent weather conditions. In the report, the NTSB stated that when Flight 3296 first attempted to land on Runway 13, the winds were at 10 knots from 270 degrees. After initiating a go-around, the winds were reported at 16 knots, gusting to 30, from 290 degrees. While on final approach the second time, the winds were 24 knots from 300 degrees, providing almost a direct tailwind. The aircraft was configured for approach with 20 degrees of flaps both times.

Aircraft landing performance standards are based on multiple factors including weight and balance, wind and runway conditions. While Flight 3296′s weight and balance has not been released, it is possible to determine a conservative estimate of its total weight from available data. According to the manufacturer, the aircraft has a basic empty weight of about 30,500 pounds (this includes the three-member crew). Adding fuel for required reserves and Cold Bay as an alternate destination (about 2,000 pounds) and weight for 39 passengers at the FAA standard for summer adults (195 lbs x 39 = 7,605 pounds), a total weight of 40,105 pounds can be calculated. This excludes any baggage that may have been onboard.

For Runway 13 at Dutch Harbor, PenAir’s company performance standards permitted a landing weight, with 20 degrees of flaps, of 40,628 pounds with zero wind, 35,402 pounds for 5 knots of tailwind and 29,955 pounds for 10 knots of tailwind. It recommended a reduction of 1,031 pounds for each additional knot of tailwind. There is thus no discernible calculation that would recommend landing on Runway 13 with the reported winds at the time of the crash at the aircraft’s approximate weight.

According to the NTSB, the flight crew reported touching down about 1,000 feet down the runway, with skid marks first appearing at about 1,840 feet. From there, the marks continued 200 feet before the aircraft crossed a grassy area, impacted the airport’s perimeter fence, crossed a ditch, hit a large rock and then crossed Ballyhoo Road. It was on the opposite shoulder of the road, over the rock seawall and nearly into the waters of Dutch Harbor, that Flight 3296 finally came to rest.

After the aircraft stopped and a desperate but ultimately unsuccessful effort was underway to save the life of passenger David Oltman, the flight crew waited with forward passengers for assistance in exiting. It was at that point, according to passenger Steve Ranney, that a brief verbal exchange occurred. “A passenger asked the captain why he landed,” explained Ranney in an email, “and he calmly said the computer showed he was within the safety margin.” According to Ranney, who was interviewed by NTSB investigators, neither the captain nor co-pilot spoke another word.

There is no onboard computer that calculates landing performance for the Saab 2000; the PIC could only have been referring to an app likely used on his company-issued iPad. “Electronic flight bags” are commonly utilized by pilots, but the use of any software for the purposes of formal flight planning in commercial operation would have to be approved by the FAA. When asked if PenAir had authorization to utilize performance calculation software, the FAA referred the question, as part of an ongoing investigation, to the NTSB. The NTSB would state only that “crew performance standards equipment procedures and a host of other factors” would be part of the investigation.

Decision-making is always an area of particular inquiry following a commercial crash, both on the part of the flight crew and company management. As investigators moved from the aircraft to the cockpit and back to the offices of PenAir, Ravn Air Group and even the FAA, there are other events in 2019 that may have garnered interest and point to further issues within the newly acquired company.
In February last year, PenAir Flight 3298 suffered an engine loss about an hour after departing King Salmon. In a statement to ADN at the time, FAA spokesman Allen Kenitzer said the aircraft “experienced engine trouble, so pilots shut it down.” The flight crew then returned to the village. In a subsequent Service Difficulty Report (SDR), the company reported a “right engine auto shutdown in flight, did not attempt restart. Troubleshooting in progress.” It is unknown what the final remedy was for that engine.

In July, PenAir Flight 2051 was en route from Anchorage to Dillingham when it suffered the loss of the right engine near its destination. As later detailed in a passenger complaint submitted to the FAA, the flight crew chose to turn around and fly all the way back to Anchorage on only one engine.

PenAir subsequently reported in an SDR that there was a “RT engine overtemp in cruise with auto shutdown” and that the engine was to be removed and replaced. Additionally, in a separate SDR the same day, the company reported a problem with the aircraft’s left engine, which went to “0 PU’s 5SEC.” The remedy was for that engine also to be replaced.
No mention of the problems with the left engine nor the necessary replacement of both engines was passed on to the passenger who filed the complaint. Neither was an explanation provided for the flight crew’s decision to forgo immediate landing at the nearest suitable airport (as required by federal regulation 121.565).

FAA Safety Inspector David Friend wrote to the passenger, a licensed pilot from the Bristol Bay region, that “it has been determined that the flight crew acted within the scope of all applicable Federal Aviation Regulations and associated PenAir Operations Specifications.” In a subsequent Freedom of Information Act request I submitted for a deviation of 121.565 report, the FAA responded that nothing pertaining to my request existed.

Months later, in the days after the crash of Flight 3296, Ravn announced a shift to using Dash-8 aircraft on the route and company management initiated a concerted effort to deflect blame to the Saab 2000. In an October 25 town hall meeting, CEO Dave Pflieger said Ravn would “need to go through a multifaceted process to ensure it is safe to land Saabs in Unalaska before they can return to service there.” This negative sentiment was echoed by Ravn’s new management, which acquired the PenAir and Corvus Airlines certificates along with several Dash-8 aircraft in a private sale last summer. In a July interview with KUCB, that company’s CEO, Rob McKinney, responded to questions about safe operations in rural Alaska by commenting on the crash of Flight 3296. “The Saab 2000 has a narrower margin of safety,” he asserted, “so that… potentially was a contributory cause of that unfortunate accident last year.”

Both Pfleiger and McKinney’s assessments ran sharply counter to the more than two years of accident-free flying with the aircraft under the Seyberts’ ownership, including thousands of flights into Unalaska. Further, from the time the Saab 2000s were acquired by the Seyberts and long before they were put into service, there was extensive flight testing, upgrades, modifications and certifications required for their transition to Part 121. All of this was heavily supervised by the FAA. By the time PenAir was purchased by Ravn in October 2018, there was nothing left for the Saab 2000 to prove; the aircraft simply needed the company to assign pilots who were trained how to fly it.

For now, Alaska Airlines flies scheduled service into Cold Bay, with continuing service to Unalaska provided by Grant Aviation. Alaska Central Express offers both regular cargo flights and passenger charter service and other operators, including Dena’ina Airtaxi, Alaska Air Transit, Resolve Aviation and Security Aviation also fly passenger charters. The Saab 2000s, which were leased by PenAir, have been parked at Anchorage International by their Florida-based owner since Ravn’s collapse. They will likely be relocated to the Lower 48 for maintenance and storage in the near future.

The NTSB’s final report on Flight 3296 should be released early next year. What it will reveal about problematic risk management assessments at all levels of the company is of great interest to anyone following aviation safety in Alaska. And while the detrimental fallout from the subsequent pandemic can not be ignored, it must be noted that Ravn was the only Alaska aviation company of significant size to file for bankruptcy after the virus. Further, although Ravn destroyed numerous financial, professional and customer relationships, many other companies shouldered the pieces it left behind while still continuing to navigate the current uncertain economic landscape.

The easiest thing in the world would be to dismiss PenAir’s summer engine problems and the decisions leading up to the Unalaska crash, disregard how long Ravn’s $90 million worth of unpaid bills were accruing, pay no attention to the likely sky-high fleet insurance the company was paying and simply blame everything that happened to it on the coronavirus. But just like the transparent attempt to shift responsibility of the Flight 3296 tragedy onto the aircraft, this would also require a determination to blindly ignore so many events leading up to Ravn’s demise, including its 16 accidents and incidents over the previous ten years. It is worth noting the most recent of those was not Flight 3296, but rather a gear-up landing by Hageland Aviation in Fairbanks, four months before Ravn shut down. It was easy to miss that one when the company was so loudly insisting everything was COVID-19′s fault.


Berlaku Besok, Pemerintah Hapus Airport Tax di 13 Bandara

Calon penumpang di bandara berjalan menuju pesawat terbang komersil. (Foto ilustrasi)
Calon penumpang di bandara berjalan menuju pesawat terbang komersil. (Foto ilustrasi)

VIVA – Pemerintah menghapus biaya Pelayanan Jasa Penumpang Pesawat Udara (PJP2U) atau seringkali dikenal sebagai Passenger Service Charge (PSC) di 13 bandara yang ditentukan. Pembebasan Airport Tax itu diberikan kepada para penumpang yang berangkat dalam upaya mendorong kebangkitan industri penerbangan dan pariwisata.

“Setiap penumpang tidak dibebani biaya PSC, karena akan dikeluarkan dari komponen biaya tiket, dan biaya PSC-nya akan ditagihkan oleh operator bandara kepada Pemerintah,” kata Direktur Jenderal Perhubungan Udara Kementerian Perhubungan Novie Riyanto dalam jumpa pers virtual di Jakarta, Kamis.

Stimulus PJP2U ini akan diberlakukan bagi calon penumpang yang membeli tiket mulai dari tanggal 23 Oktober 2020 jam 00.01 WIB hingga 31 Desember 2020 jam 23.59 WIB. “Dan tiket yang dibeli untuk penerbangan sebelum jam 00.01 tanggal 1 Januari 2021,” katanya.

Hal tersebut disampaikan usai Penandatanganan Kesepakatan Bersama Pemberian Stimulus Penerbangan Tarif Pelayanan Jasa Penumpang Pesawat Udara dan Pemberian Stimulus Pelayanan Jasa Kalibrasi Fasilitas Penerbangan, yang antara lain dihadiri oleh Dirut PT Angkasa Pura I (Persero) Faik Fahmi, Dirut PT Angkasda Pura II (Persero) Muhammad Awaluddin, serta Ketua Umum Asosiasi Perusahaan Penerbangan Nasional Indonesia (INACA) Denon Prawiraatmadja.

Dikatakan Novie, pandemi COVID-19 menjadi mimpi buruk bagi industri penerbangan yang berdampak pada anjloknya arus penumpang dari dan ke berbagai daerah, sehingga pemerintah melalui Kementerian Perhubungan perlu memberikan insentif atau stimulus penerbangan.

Harapan dari stimulus Tarif PJP2U ini, katanya, akan memberikan keringanan bagi para penumpang untuk bepergian menggunakan jasa transportasi udara yang akhirnya akan membangkitkan pertumbuhan industri lainnya seperti pariwisata dan UMKM.

Stimulus berupa penyediaan biaya kalibrasi fasilitas navigasi penerbangan dan alat bantu pendaratan pesawat yang menjadi kewajiban operator bandara baik Angkasa Pura I, Angkasa Pura II, Bandara Hang Nadim Batam dan Bandara Komodo-Labuan Bajo ditanggung oleh Pemerintah. Sehingga, dapat meringankan beban biaya operasional operator bandara akibat pandemi COVID-19.

Dikatakan, stimulus tarif PJP2U atau PSC akan berlaku di 13 bandara udara yaitu Bandar Udara Internasional Soekarno-Hatta, Tangerang (CGK), Hang Nadim, Batam (BTH), Kuala Namu, Deliserdang (KNO), I Gusti Ngurah Rai, Denpasar (DPS), Yogyakarta Internasional, Kulon Progo (YIA), Halim Perdanakusuma, Jakarta (HLP), Internasional Lombok, Praya (LOP), Jenderal Ahmad Yani, Semarang (SRG), Sam Ratulangi, Manado (MDC), Komodo, Labuan Bajo (LBJ), Silangit (DTB), Blimbingsari, Banyuwangi (BWX), Adi Sucipto, Yogjakarta (JOG).

Stimulus PJP2U ini tentunya adalah berita baik bagi masyarakat dan industri penerbangan, diharapkan dengan stimulus ini masyarakat akan mendapatkan keringan biaya perjalanan menggunakan maskapai dengan berbagai tujuan, yang akhirnya akan memberikan dampak yang signifikan terhadap pertumbuhan ekonomi di daerah, seperti industri pariwisata, sektor UMKM dan juga industri lainnya.

Tentu saja di tengah pandemi ini diharapkan masyarakat pengguna jasa transportasi udara tetap mengutamakan protocol Kesehatan dengan tetap menerapkan 3 M yaitu menggunakan masker, mencuci tangan dan juga menjaga jarak.

Kemenhub berharap bagi operator penerbangan maupun operator bandar udara dengan adanya stimulus PJP2U menjadi berita baik, dengan harapan peningkatan pengguna jasa transportasi udara, namun di sisi lain para pemangku kepentingan penerbangan tetap diwajibkan menaati SE Dirjen Nomor 13 Tahun 2020. (Ant)


AirAsia X Berhenti Beroperasi di Indonesia, Ada Apa?

Foto Pesawat Airbus A330-900 yang dipesan AirAsia X(dok AirAsia X, Airbus)

JAKARTA, – Maskapai AirAsia X berencana menutup operasionalnya di Indonesia. Langkah tersebut dilakukan agar dapat bertahan di tengah pandemi Covid-19. Sebagaimana diketahui, maskapai yang merupakan bagian dari AirAsia Group itu belum dapat beroperasi sejak Maret lalu. Deputy Chairman Air Asia X Lim Kian Onn mengatakan, penutupan operasional juga merupakan bagian dari restrukturisasi yang tengah dilakukan maskapai guna menghapus utang sebesar 63,5 miliar ringgit atau setara Rp 222 triliun (asumsi kurs Rp 3.500 per ringgit).

Lim mengaku kesulitan untuk mendapatkan persetujuan dari para investor dan kreditur. Pasalnya, mereka merasa kecewa dan meminta meminta persyaratan yang lebih baik, termasuk ekuitas gratis untuk utang yang dihapuskan. Namun, Lim menambahkan, hal itu tidak mungkin dipenuhi oleh maskapai penerbangan.  Meskipun begitu, Lim memastikan bahwa pihaknya akan menemukan jalan tengah guna memajukan bisnis maskapai.

“Tidak ada yang bisa mendapatkan keuntungan dari ditutupnya usaha kami,” ujarnya dikutip dari The New Straits Times, Senin (19/10/2020). Sebagai informasi, AirAsia X merupakan maskapai yang difokuskan untuk melayani penerbangan jarak jauh, dengan waktu terbang lebih dari 4 jam. CEO AirAsia Group Tony Fernandes pun mengakui, penerbangan jarak jauh akan memakan waktu pulih lebih lama ketimbang jarak dekat. “Business travel, penerbangan antarbenua, first class travel, akan membutuhkan waktu lama untuk bangkit,” ucap Fernandes.

Artikel ini telah tayang di dengan judul “AirAsia X Berhenti Beroperasi di Indonesia, Ada Apa? “, Klik untuk baca:
Penulis : Rully R. Ramli
Editor : Sakina Rakhma Diah Setiawan

Boeing 737 MAX Dinyatakan Aman Terbang oleh Regulator Penerbangan Eropa

Boeing 737 MAX Dinyatakan Aman Terbang oleh Regulator Penerbangan Eropa

ejak insiden yang menimpa Boeing 737 MAX Lion Air dan Ethiopian, pesawat tersebut dilarang terbang di seluruh dunia. Namun, hari ini Boeing akhirnya mendapat kabar positif setelah sekian lama.

Melalui BloombergEuropean Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) atau regulator penerbangan Eropa telah menyatakan puas atas perkembangan yang dilakukan oleh Boeing untuk pesawat Boeing 737 MAX.

Meski demikian, bukan berarti Boeing 737 MAX akan segera terbang dalam waktu dekat. EASA melalui Executive Director-nya, Patrick Ky, menyatakan bahwa Boeing 737 MAX dinyatakan aman dan bisa kembali terbang sebelum tahun 2020 berakhir.

Saat ini EASA sedang menyiapkan dokumen final untuk sertifikasi kelayakan terbang yang seharusnya akan rampung bulan depan. Kemudian komentar dari publik akan dikumpulkan selama periode 4 minggu. Barulah setelah itu di bulan Desember 2020, Boeing 737 MAX bisa kembali mengudara di langit Eropa.

Boeing 737 MAX 8 milik Garuda Indonesia. Foto oleh Ikhwan Hidayat

Boeing 737 MAX Dituntut Lebih Baik

Meski sudah dinilai layak terbang, namun EASA nampaknya tidak akan puas dengan perkembangan saat ini. Kedepannya, EASA juga mengharapkan perkembangan lanjutan untuk Boeing 737 MAX. Spesifiknya, sistem sensor sintetis ketiga akan dipasang untuk meningkatkan level keamanan dari pesawat tersebut.

Pada insiden terjatuhnya pesawat Lion Air & Ethiopian, sistem sensor angle-of-attack (AOA) pada kedua pilot mengalami malfungsi. Sensor sintetis ketiga tersebut akan menjadi fitur back-up yang membantu pilot untuk melihat apakah pesawat mengarah ke atas atau ke bawah.

Disebutkan bahwa perlu waktu 2 tahun untuk mengembangkan sensor tambahan tersebut, yang mana akan diwajibkan pada varian terbesar Boeing 737 MAX 10 yang akan mulai beroperasi di tahun 2022.


Regulator penerbangan Eropa telah memberikan lampu hijau untuk pesawat Boeing 737 MAX. Kemungkinan besar kita bisa melihat pesawat tersebut mulai terbang di langit Eropa sebelum tahun 2021. Melihat perkembangan positif tersebut, tidak menutup kemungkinan pesawat tersebut akan turut mendapat sertifikasi & kembali terbang juga di benua lain.

Ketika kembali terbang, saya cukup percaya bahwa Boeing 737 MAX akan menjadi salah satu jenis pesawat teraman. Wajar saja mengingat banyaknya uji coba dan regulasi baru yang harus dipenuhi oleh Boeing. Meski masih ada keraguan, saya pribadi tidak masalah untuk terbang di pesawat tersebut.


Kiat Maskapai Bertahan Saat Pandemi: Thai Airways Jualan Gorengan, AirAsia Bisnis Akikah

Gerai penjualan patong-go di gedung THAI Catering, Bangkok.
Gerai penjualan patong-go di gedung THAI Catering, Bangkok.(FACEBOOK THAI CATERING)

JAKARTA, – Penyebaran pandemi virus corona ( Covid-19) membuat performa industri maskapai babak belur. Jumlah penumpang anjlok seiiring dengan pembatasan aktivitas di berbagai negara. Tak mau tinggal diam menanti ancaman kebangkrutan, perusahaan maskapai penerbangan terpaksa merambah bisnis lain agar bisa tetap bertahan. Salah satu kiatnya yakni memanfaatkan anak usaha atau divisi bisnis katering untuk meraup pendapatan tambahan. Sebagaimana diketahui, industri kuliner memang relatif kebal terhadap pandemi Covid-19. Belanja masyarakat yang masih tinggi terhadap konsumsi makanan jadi tolok ukurnya. Berikut contoh dua maskapai penerbangan yang terjun ke bisnis kuliner.

1. AirAsia buka bisnis daging akikah

Maskapai penerbangan swasta terbesar Malaysia ini baru saja mengumumkan langkah bisnis dengan terjun ke perdagangan daging akikah. Populasi muslim di Negeri Jiran yang besar, membuat prospek bisnis daging kambing untuk aqiqah sangat potensial. Selain itu, AirAsia juga fokus menggarap pasar umat muslim di luar negeri yang jadi wilayah operasional armada pesawat AirAsia seperti Timur Tengah, Bangladesh, Thailand, dan India. Permintaan daging akikah selalu tinggi dan tak mengenal musim. Air Asia sendiri meluncurkan platform penjualan online bernama Ikhlas yang bisa diakses di laman Bisnis daging akikah ini dijalankan anak perusahaannya, Ikhlas Com Travel Sdn Bhd yang berkantor pusat di Kuala Lumpur Sentral, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Harga kambing yang ditawarkan bervariasi yakni antara RM 499 atau sekitar Rp 1,77 juta (kurs Rp 3.500) dan paling mahal sebesar RM 799 atau sekitar Rp 2,83 juta. “Sebagai bagian dari ekspansi bisnis digital grup AirAsia, Ikhlas, lini bisnis yang melayani platform gaya hidup Muslim hari ini meluncurkan layanan terbarunya, aqiqah,” tulis Air Asia di laman resminya seperti dikutip pada Senin (12/10/2020).

2. Thai Airways jual gorengan

Thai Airways adalah satu contoh maskapai yang terbilang sukses menggeluti bisnis kuliner di luar katering penerbangan di saat pandemi Covid-19. Tak tanggung-tanggung, maskapai flag carrier ini bahkan mengandalkan jualan gorengan.

Gorengan yang dijual Thai Airways cukup populer bagi masyarakat Thailand, khususnya di Bangkok. Perusahaan ini memanfaatkan aset kateringnya untuk memproduksi gorengan yang diberi nama Patong-go tersebut.

Untuk penjualannya, selain menyewa tempat di berbagai lokasi strategis, Thai Airways juga memanfaatkan aset-aset propertinya seperti kantor di berbagai sudut kota untuk lokasi berjualan. Setiap orang, orang-orang rela mengantre untuk membeli Patong-go sejak dibuka mulai pagi hari. Dikutip dari Bangkok Post, setiap kotak dijual seharga 50 baht (Rp 23.600) yang berisi tiga gorengan dan sebungkus saus celup yang terbuat dari ubi ungu dan telur custard. Beberapa lokasi penjualannya antara lain toko roti Puff & Pie di pasar Or Tor Kor, di kantor pusatnya di distrik Chatuchak, gedung Rak Khun Tao Fa, gedung Thai Catering di distrik Don Muang, serta kantor cabang Thai Airways di Silom. Thai Airways tak hanya menjual gorengan, lini bisnis kateringnya juga dimanfaatkan untuk menjual roti. Perusahaan juga menyulap restoran menjadi kabin pesawat kelas satu. Untuk membangun suasana, restoran itu dilengkapi dengan kursi yang nyaman dan awak kabin yang perhatian.

Thai Airways restoran pop up di Bangkok, Thailand.
Thai Airways restoran pop up di Bangkok, Thailand. (Dok. AFP)

Artikel ini telah tayang di dengan judul “Kiat Maskapai Bertahan Saat Pandemi: Thai Airways Jualan Gorengan, AirAsia Bisnis Akikah”, Klik untuk baca:
Penulis : Muhammad Idris
Editor : Muhammad Idris