Posts with the tag ‘aviation safety’


Delta “Sorry/Not Sorry” for Retaliating Against Pilot in Whistleblower Case

October 4, 2022

One has to wonder just how much longer Delta Air Lines wants to screw around with Karlene Petitt. Last winter, after five years of testimony and legal arguments, Administrative Law Judge Scott Morris found the airline had mistreated the veteran pilot by retaliating against her when she reported safety violations. In the judge’s word, the airline “weaponized” its right to order pilots to undergo psychiatric examination by sending Petitt to a company-selected psychiatrist who gave her a career-ending diagnosis that was not accurate. There’s a lot to unpack in the case, but for purposes of Delta’s latest shenanigan, let’s just say that when Judge Morris… Read More…


Black Boxes Pulled as French Open Probe into Air France Go-Around

April 6, 2022

  Frances’s air accident investigation office has opened a probe into Tuesday’s near-disaster of an Air France flight from New York to Paris.  Flight 11, a Boeing 777 was on final approach and descending when air traffic control heard a transmission from the cockpit of human grunting and alarms. The controller repeated the runway clearance information several times before the crew answered. Controllers saw that as the plane continued its descent it veered off the flight path and to the left. At this point, the pilots initiated a go-around. In the ATC tape of the episode which can be heard via the Airlive YouTube channel… Read More…


Jetliner Debris Found Miles from Crash Scene May Indicate Pre-Crash Breakup

March 24, 2022

Chinese authorities say they have found a piece of the China Eastern airliner, six miles from the area where the Boeing 737 NG crashed on Monday. While the main debris field is concentrated as a result of the plane’s near-vertical plummet from the sky, this separate piece, a distance away, indicates that prior to the crash the airplane was shedding parts. Whether the piece coming free of the plane triggered the disaster or if it was a consequence of the high-speed dive is not known but is certainly a question the investigators will try to answer. An airliner dropping nose down so dramatically and rapidly… Read More…


China Eastern Crash and What You Don’t Know About 737 NG

March 21, 2022

News bulletins today related to the crash of China Eastern Flight 5735 include the disclaimer that the Boeing 737 that plunged to earth killing 132 people, is not the notorious 737 MAX. Most news consumers, indeed most air travelers, know at least a glimmer of the story of the MAX, a flawed Boeing product that produced two fatal crashes in 2018 and 2019. They know less about the 737 NG. What remains practically a secret, is that the 737 NG was the subject of a decade-long series of court cases filed by Boeing whistleblowers who say the NGs are poorly constructed and at risk of… Read More…


Lion Air Crash Report Urges Realistic View of Pilot Capabilities

October 25, 2019

The final report on the crash of Lion Air Flight 610 tells a lengthy but ultimately old story; many things combined to lead to the October 29, 2018 disaster that killed 189 people. The National Transportation Safety Committee details nine as it lists the shortcomings of Lion Air, Air Nav Indonesia and Boeing. Incorrect, flawed, erroneous, incomplete and ineffective are just some of the damning words that litter the list of contributing factors. But it is its recommendation to Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration that goes to the heart of the global debate that heated up with the twin Max disasters. What is the… Read More…


“Bombshell” TV Program on Malaysia 370 Fueled by Alternative Facts

May 17, 2018

In an earlier post, I accused the Australian 60 Minutes program of gender bias by excluding from its  Sunday show on the disappearance of Malaysia 370, the two women who wrote books on the subject, Florence de Changy author of Flight MH370 Did Not Disappear and me. In a lengthy broadcast claiming to feature the world’s “keenest minds”, 60 Minutes featured five men in a rousing exchange of maybes and coulda beens or what is otherwise known in the aviation community as hangar talk. Best to let the men fly this plane because what’s fueling Channel 9’s MH370 coverage is not gender bias but agenda bias with… Read More…


Hard hits and Close Calls Characterize Aviation in 2017

December 29, 2017

The year coming to a close will have to be remembered for the relentless onslaught of aviation drama and near-disaster. Outrageous behavior in the passenger cabin and eyebrow-raising piloting made the news as did end-of-days-like weather that played havoc with airports and the logic-defying conduct of world leaders and government decision-makers. So let’s get to it, 2018 will be here before we know it. One year ago, Australia’s decision to put an end to the sea search for Malaysia 370 unleashed a fury of criticism as families claimed the failure to find the Boeing 777 keeps the world from finding out what made the plane… Read More…


WestJet Denies Close Call Caught on Camera at St. Maarten

March 9, 2017

Air travelers to St. Maarten expect a thrilling view approaching Princess Juliana International Airport. But thrills turned terrifying for passengers and observers of WestJet Flight 2652 from Toronto on Tuesday. When the Boeing 737 descended through the clouds it went well below the minimum descent altitude. The scene of the jet skimming the surface of Maho Bay was captured by aviation photographer Christine Garner,  shooting from the roof of a nearby building. She said she thought the plane was going to crash. “When this plane came out of the cloud, I was so shocked,” she said. “The surprising thing was he was lower than me. Normally they pass… Read More…


United Makes Peace by Reinstating Fired Crew, Qatar Not So Much

March 11, 2016

Two stories with big consequences for the participants and lessons for the rest of us were in the news this week. After years of fighting their firing for expressing concern about the security of their aircraft, 13 United flight attendants have been reinstated. You may recall from a previous post on my blog, that in the summer of 2014, the cabin crew on a flight from San Francisco to Hong Kong, grew concerned about disturbing graffiti on the tail of their Boeing 747. Drawn in the grease were two faces and the words “bye bye”. The airlines operations staff dismissed the drawing as a benign prank… Read More…


Quest For More From CNN From MH-370

March 6, 2016

Full disclosure: The Crash Detectives, my own book on the mysterious disappearance of Malaysia Flight 370, will be published by Penguin in September. This may have colored my perception of Richard Quest’s new book, The Vanishing of Flight 370. Then again, maybe it really is a rehash of CNN’s original undisciplined coverage. Quest, CNN’s business correspondent, is well known for his out-sized personality and his “say anything” interview style. But in the book he has produced for Penguin Berkley and timed to the second anniversary of the disappearance of Malaysia 370, all his insouciant charm is gone. Without that, Quest’s demonstrated ego wears thin long… Read More…


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