Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Is Hawaiian Airlines really safe?

All flights from and to Hawaii are long haul and have no place to land often for several hours. A lost engine can be a disaster and should be of the highest priority by any airline flying to this US Island State.

For eight years, one of the most recognized airlines in the United States, Hawaiian Airlines may serve the best Island food on its planes, but is safety really a priority? Mr. Hui Vo, media relations spokesperson of the airline told eTN today - it it. Vo declined to comment however on allegation made by the US authority in charge of airline safety.He told eTN: "This  is a pending investigation, we won't comment. We are confirming Hawaiian Airlines requested an informal meeting with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to discuss this issue."

Critics say: "There is nothing private about the consequences of airlines ignoring their obligations to the safety rules and Hawaiian ought to seek a public hearing, so that it’s position can be better understood and its fitness to fly better assessed by members of the public before they find themselves inside its airliners."

Relaxed or non compliance of jet engine safety regulations may now cost Hawaiian Airlines a $548,000 fine. This is a small civil penalty compared to the loss of life and a most likely criminal consequences in case of an accident.

The Federal Aviation Administration says Hawaiian Airlines went eight years without properly inspecting certain components of one of its planes used for commercial flights.

The FAA said Monday it is suggesting a fine of nearly $548,000 for the Honolulu-based airline. Airline and FAA officials say the company asked for an informal meeting to discuss the matter.

The agency says Hawaiian didn’t comply with a 2000 directive that established inspections of specific engine thrust reverser components. FAA officials say Hawaiian operated a Boeing 767-300 on more than 5,000 flights without complying with the directive.

The agency says a 2012 inspection found Hawaiian records wrongly said the directive didn’t apply to the aircraft.

This is the exact wording of the FAA Media Statement:
he U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is proposing a $547,500 Civil Penalty against Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. for operating a Boeing 767-300 that was not in compliance with Federal Aviation Regulations.

The FAA alleges Hawaiian operated the aircraft thousands of times when it was not in compliance with a July 2000 Airworthiness Directive (AD) that required inspections of certain engine thrust reverser components. The purpose of the AD was to prevent a portion of the thrust reverser from coming off in flight, which could cause a rapid decompression of the aircraft.

The AD required initial and repetitive inspections of the components to detect damage and wear, and corrective actions if necessary. It required replacement of the components with new and improved parts within four years of the AD taking effect.

During a July 2012 inspection, the FAA discovered that some of Hawaiian’s records erroneously showed the AD did not apply to one of its Boeing 767 aircraft. The FAA alleges Hawaiian operated the aircraft more than 5,000 times – mostly on passenger carrying flights – between July 2004 and July 2012 when it was out of compliance with the AD. The FAA further alleges Hawaiian operated the aircraft on 14 passenger flights after the agency alerted the carrier that some of its records erroneously indicated that the AD did not apply to the aircraft.

Additionally, the FAA alleges Hawaiian failed to keep required records of the status of the AD for the aircraft in question.

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