The Transportation Security Administration is scrutinizing its procedures and equipment as more details emerge about the Feb. 3 explosion on Daallo Airlines flight D3159 in Somalia. The explosion is believed to have been caused by a passenger. The passenger was sucked out of a hole blown in the fuselage by the explosion, and was the only person killed in the incident.
American Airlines reported a 1.6% increase in passenger traffic for January on a year-over-year basis. The carrier's load factor also rose 1.5% for the month as compared to January of last year.
Hawaiian Airlines named Jay Schaefer as vice president and treasurer. Schaefer, who has worked for Alaska for more than a decade, also previously served in finance for Amazon. "Jay’s leadership of complex financial operations, along with his extensive airline experience, will allow us to continue managing our resources effectively and stay competitive in a new year of growth," said Shannon Okinaka, CFO and executive vice president for Hawaiian.
Airlines for America applauded the International Civil Aviation Organization for setting standards on aviation carbon emissions. "We commend the work of the committee for its part in ensuring that ICAO continues to demonstrate leadership in setting environmental standards for global aviation," said Nancy Young, vice president for environmental affairs at A4A.
A coalition of 13 conservative groups sent a letter to Congress in support of a bill to reform the air traffic control system. "To us it is an axiomatic economic principle that user-funded, user-accountable entities are far more capable of delivering innovation and timely improvements in a cost-effective manner than government agencies," they wrote.
In honor of Black History Month, American Airlines is offering an inflight documentary on Tuskegee Airmen. "The Luft Gangster: Memoirs of a Second Class Hero" follows the life of a Tuskegee Airman who was taken as a prisoner of war in World War II. The documentary is available on flights with in-seat entertainment.
American Airlines offers a concierge service, Five Star Service, that can be purchased as an amenity. Chris Chamberlin tested out the service in Los Angeles and New York, and concludes "American Airlines' VIP service makes travelling as effortless as possible for seriously high flyers -- on departure, at least."
The Obama administration's proposed budget for fiscal 2017 includes a raise to the federal cap on passenger facility charges, from $4.50 to $8. The proposal also includes $254 million for essential air services, $1 billion for NextGen, $5.719 billion for Transportation Security Administration aviation security activities and $200 million for screening technology.
The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are urging airlines to consider carefully the risks associated with carrying lithium ion batteries as cargo. Tests have shown that the batteries can ignite fires with temperatures of up to 1100 degrees, the melting point of aluminum.
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