Comprehensive Safety Audit Plan Ordered For all Airlines, and MROs.
Finally, the authorities felt a need for a Safety Audit Plan …….
In recent times, there have been a number of cases of mid-air engine failures, involving mainly the Pratt and Whitney (P&W) engine-powered Airbus A320 neo planes. These airplanes are being operated by domestic LCCs like IndiGo and GoAir. IndiGo had to ground five of its A320 neos due to non-availability of spare P&W engines.
India’s Civil Aviation Minister, Suresh Prabhu had asked the aviation regulator, the
Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), to submit a report on the status of these planes. At that time, he had also maintained that the security of passengers is of paramount importance and it should not be compromised at any cost.
Apart from that, Jet Airways has reported as many as three incidents involving its pilots. Some of the latest in 2018 are :
The Jet Airways flight 9W-523 with Boeing 737 aircraft, and 141 passengers on board failed takeoff attempt at the Riyadh airport. The DGCA had to suspend flying licence of two of its pilots. The commander had attempted a take-off from a taxiway at Riyadh airport which resulted in the plane exceeding the the taxiway on to the unpaved area and ending up close to the exit of the taxiway.
The Jet Airways Boeing 777 flight which was taxiing for take off for London from Delhi reportedly came to a sudden halt as the pilot did not have the ATC clearance. Subsequently, both of its pilots were taken off from flying duties till investigations were completed.
The Latest. September, 20.
166 passengers on a Jet Airways flight 9W-697 from Mumbai to Jaipur, had a terrifying experience. The plane had to turn back shortly after take-off. Reason : Loss of cabin pressure. At least 30 passengers suffered nose bleeding and ear pain after the cockpit crew forgot to turn on the cabin pressurization switch. The pilots have been de-rostered thereafter.
According to information from the ministry of civil aviation, there have been 347 incidents of air safety violations in 2016, and 276 till November 2017.
On September 21, Prabhu had to order a safety audit of all scheduled airlines and airports amid recent such incidents related to safety of passengers. This development assumes more significance since the minister has also ordered a probe into the last Jet Airways flight incident, which is being investigated by the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB).
The minister has directed officials concerned to prepare a comprehensive safety audit plan, which involves assessment of safety parameters of all scheduled airlines, aerodromes, flying training schools and MROs (Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul Organisations) immediately. The Minister has further directed that safety audit should be commenced forthwith and a report to this effect should be submitted for his perusal within 30 days.
In August, the DGCA had conducted a comprehensive financial audit of Air India and Jet Airways along with special safety audit of scheduled commuter airlines Air Deccan and Air Odisha.
The buzz earlier was that after posting a loss of Rs 10,400 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2018, Jet Airways tried its best to control damage, proposed salary cuts, austerity, but it failed to do so. The employees protested and amid unflattering media reports over the past month or so, Jet Airways has simply been unable to run itself properly. Jet Airways management has to bear warnings of ‘non-cooperation’ from its pilots if their salary payments are touched. Pilots in Air India have been doing it for months.
With such a scenario, it is very difficult to assume that all is well with India’s aviation in general and Jet Airways in particular. The incident involving more than 30 passengers suffering headache, nose and ear bleeding on a Jet Airways flight when its pilots “forgot” to turn on cabin pressurisation, but remembered to non-cooperate, is one of a very serious nature.
Jet’s austerity drives, measures and attempts to infuse life into it quickly vanished in one stroke. It could not complete the flight, had to arrange another flight and caused undue harassment to its valued guests. Its brand image deteriorated further. Its shares crashed 4.21% to Rs 243 then again lost further 5% to Rs 231. It is now apparent that Jet Airways is losing credibility with every passing day.
The Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau have their hands already full. With this latest incident/accident coming up for investigation, the AAIB must look at all angles and come up with answers and solutions that could show the most suitable way forward for everybody concerned.