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| GA News |
| DEAL FOR 1,000 ECLIPSE JETS IN DOUBT |
A proposed air taxi company may not be able to complete its planned purchase of 1,000 Eclipse 500 jets, and Eclipse Aviation has publicly admitted that Eclipse made a mistake in accepting stock from the company. In the June issue of Inc Magazine, Eclipse CEO Vern Raburn discussed the deal to provide a company called Nimbus Group Inc. with the jet order beginning in 2004. Eclipse CFO Peter Reed told ePilot that the company signed a contract with Nimbus last August. Because of the downturn in the economy following the September 11 terrorist attacks, Nimbus could not come up with the cash needed to meet deposit requirements. In addition to extending the deadline to June 30, Eclipse accepted stock in Nimbus that was to amount to $2 million. But Reed said that after the transaction was completed, the stock price meant that Eclipse would own 17 percent of Nimbus. Since the percentage was so high, Eclipse attorneys informed company officials that under federal laws, they couldn't simply turn around and sell the stock as was originally intended. Eclipse then returned the stock. Nimbus still has until the end of June to come up with a reported $11.75 million, or Eclipse can terminate the contract. Eclipse also denied any insinuations that the Nimbus deal was used to manipulate current or potential investors. The article "The Plane Truth" is available on Inc's Web site.
NEW PIPER HIT WITH $222,300 FINE BY FAA
Sloppy housekeeping and record keeping were cited by the FAA as the basis of a proposed $222,300 fine against The New Piper Aircraft Company. The FAA said Piper failed to "...properly maintain its approved quality system and failed to ensure its aircraft conformed to the approved type design." FAA officials based their findings on a March 2001 inspection. Piper officials said the fine is inappropriate. The FAA and Piper are working together to resolve the issue. Piper has begun a "Factory of the Future" program to improve quality and the manufacturing process, but a Piper spokesman said that the new initiative did not result from the 2001 FAA inspection. In a certified letter sent May 28, 2002, FAA inspectors reported 21 complaints including forms that were improperly filled out and parts that were poorly labeled. There were no airworthiness concerns expressed in the report. Piper has 30 days to respond.
FLIGHT ACROSS AMERICA TO HONOR 9/11 VICTIMS
This summer volunteer pilots will honor victims of the September 11 tragedy by flying across the country. Starting on August 11 from Paine Field in Everett, Washington, Flight Across America will link with other flights and converge in New York City on the one-year anniversary. Fifty state flags will be delivered to the city. The goal is to have at least one aircraft take off and land from every airport in the country during the month-long celebration of flight. There will also be fly-in picnics. Flight Across America was dreamed up by Molly Peebles, who has a newly discovered passion for flight and a desire to make a difference after September 11. See the Web site.
UPSAT OFFERS WEATHER RADAR UPGRADE FOR MX20
UPS Aviation Technologies has unveiled a new version of the MX20 multifunction display that allows users to display weather information from the Honeywell Bendix/King RDR 2000 digital color radar system. Called the MX20-IO, the new display is also capable of showing traffic targets from both Goodrich Skywatch and Ryan TCAD products. The new model has all the same features as the standard MX20.
NTSB ISSUES STEMME SAFETY RECOMMENDATION
Stemme S10, A10-V, and S10-VT powered gliders should be modified to reduce the risk of fire in the engine compartment, the NTSB has recommended. The NTSB based its suggestion for a design change on a July 2001 accident in Antigo, Wisconsin, in which a Stemme S10-VT was forced to land after its Rotax 914 engine failed and a fire started in the engine compartment. The aircraft was destroyed by fire following the landing; the passenger and pilot escaped unharmed. Examining a new production Stemme S10-VT, NTSB examiners found that forward and aft firewalls contained openings as large as 1 inch to accommodate aircraft structural members and the propeller drive shaft. They also reported that rubber fuel lines were not adequately protected, and that fuel system components were located directly over the hot exhaust system. The sides and bottom of the engine compartment are made of composite material that can burn, the NTSB investigators added. A Stemme USAï¿½spokesman said the company is concerned about safety and supports anything the NTSBï¿½recommends.
FAA MANDATES TWIN BEECH DOOR PLACARD
In a recently issued AD, the FAA mandated installation of a new door operating instruction placard on certain Beech twin-engine airplanes. The AD, applicable to Beech 58P, 60, A60, and 65-88 airplanes, is intended to improve the visibility and understandability of door operating instructions. AOPA did not object to the new placard because it will ensure that aircraft occupants can operate the exit door in an emergency situation. To download a copy of the AD, visit AOPA Online.
For daily news updates, see AOPA Online.
| Inside AOPA |
| FINAL PREPARATIONS MADE FOR AOPA FLY-IN |
AOPA staff members are making final preparations today for the AOPA Fly-In and Open House at Frederick (Maryland) Municipal Airport on Saturday. A variety of educational seminars are scheduled, more than 100 exhibitors have registered, and some three dozen new aircraft will be on static display. Saturday's weather in the region is looking good too, according to the forecast from Meteorlogix. The event runs from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is open to all; admission and parking are free. Whether you can attend the fly-in this year or not, take a look at the air traffic on AOPA Online–Flight Explorer is providing free real-time data.
SHARE THE WEALTH, SPREAD THE KNOWLEDGE, AOPAï¿½SAYS
Are you a pilot looking to share the joy of flying? AOPA Project Pilot has a new and improved way to help you find a student pilot who you can mentor. Project Pilot's Find-a-Mentor/Find-a-Student page on AOPA Online offers a single, easy-to-use place for pilots, student pilots, and would-be pilots who are interested in a mentor/student relationship but don't know where to find a partner. AOPA provides support material for both mentor and student. See AOPAï¿½Online.
Changing your mailing or e-mail addresses? Click here to update.
| On Capitol Hill |
| AOPA PILOT IDENTIFICATION PROPOSAL ADVANCING, TSA SAYS |
The FAA anticipates issuing a formal notice to solicit public comments on AOPA's proposal that pilots be required to carry a valid government photo ID, in addition to their pilot and medical certificates, according to the Transportation Security Administration's just-released Report to Congress on Enhanced Security Measures. TSA has been charged with overseeing all security issues pertaining to transportation, including working with the FAA to incorporate photographs on pilot certificates. "While I'm pleased that the administration is moving forward on our petition, bureaucratic delays shouldn't delay a commonsense approach that can be implemented almost immediately," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. TSA's report to Congress fulfills a legislative requirement set forth by the Aviation and Transportation Security Act that was signed into law by President Bush on November 19, 2001.
CHICAGO AIRPORTS BILLS SHOULD SEE ACTION IN JUNE
Both the Senate and the House are in recess this week in observation of the Memorial Day holiday. When they return in June, however, movement on the legislation to keep Meigs Field open in Chicago is expected to increase. AOPA Legislative Affairs continues to work with Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) and Rep. William Lipinski (D-Ill.) to pass the Senate and House bills. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) has signaled his readiness to move the bill. A letter sent to both Daschle and Minority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.) may forestall any efforts by the Senate bill's opponent, Peter Fitzgerald (R-Ill.), to filibuster.
| Airport Support Network |
| VOLUNTEER OF THE WEEK–STEPHEN BETZLER |
AOPA Airport Support Network volunteer Stephen Betzler of Waukesha County Airport (UES) in Wisconsin has become chairman of a new airport marketing committee, the Waukesha Airport Corporate, Community, and Kids Organization (WACCKO), funded by the airport commission. WACCKO has just received the airport economic impact study from the state. An article in the local newspaper highlighted the airport's positive direct, indirect, induced, and job impact on the county and state. WACCKO is in the process of educating local officials on the study.
To learn more about the Airport Support Network, visit AOPA Online
| AOPAï¿½Air Safety Foundation News |
| ASF SCHOLARSHIP DEADLINE NEARS |
The deadline for the ExxonMobil Lubricants Scholarship as well as the Koch Corporation Scholarship is July 31. ExxonMobil offers four scholarships: two academic aviation scholarships and two aircraft and powerplant mechanic scholarships. The Koch scholarship is awarded to a student enrolled in a university course of study focusing on aviation. For more information, see the Web site.
| Quiz Me! |
|Here's a question asked by an AOPA member last week of our AOPA technical specialists. Test your knowledge. |
Question: I'm planning a flight to Kenai, Alaska. In reviewing the airport information, it gives the following for runways: 19L, 19R, and 19W. What does 19W stand for?
Answer: The "W" in 19W stands for "water." Kenai has a 3,500-by-150-foot water lane used for seaplanes. It is aligned with the paved runway (1L/19R) and the turf runway (1R/19L). Airport information is readily available to AOPA members in the AOPA Airport Directory Online.
Got a technical question for AOPA specialists? Call 800/872-2672 or e-mail to [email protected]. Send comments on our Quiz Me! questions to [email protected].
| Picture Perfect |
Jump to the AOPA Online Gallery to see the featured airplane of the day. Click on the link for details on how to capture wallpaper for your work area. See AOPA Online.
| What's New At AOPAï¿½Online |
|What's the difference between a Part 61 and Part 141 flight school? Find out in a new subject report on AOPA Online. The report also provides information on how to apply for Part 141 certification. See AOPAï¿½Online. |
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPAï¿½Online, provided by Meteorlogix. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| WEEKEND FLYING DESTINATIONS |
Frederick, Maryland. The AOPA Fly-in and Open House takes place June 1 at AOPA headquarters on Frederick Municipal Airport (FDK). Visit the Web site.
Manitowoc, Wisconsin. The Manitowoc Airshow 2002 takes place June 8 and 9 at Manitowoc County Airport (MTW). Featuring Air Force F-15s, A-10s, C-130s, Stealth Fighter fly-by, civilian performers, exhibits, and more. See the Web site.
Reading, Pennsylvania. A WWII Commemorative Weekend takes place June 7 through 9 at Reading Regional Airport (RDG). Sponsored by the Mid Atlantic Air Museum. Visit the Web site for more information.
Saint Francis, Kansas. The Twentieth Annual Stearman Fly-in takes place June 8 and 9 at St. Francis Airport (SYF). Stearman biplanes, hot air balloons, skydiving demonstrations. All airplanes, gliders, ultralights welcome. For more information call Robert Grace, 785/332-2251.
For more airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online . For more events, see Aviation Calendar of Events
AOPA PILOT TOWN MEETINGS
The next Pilot Town Meetings featuring AOPA President Phil Boyer are in Cleveland, June 17; Nashville, Tennessee, June 19; and in Detroit, June 20. Admission is free. See AOPA Online.
ASF FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
(All clinics start at 7:30 a.m.)
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Orlando, Florida, and Charlotte, North Carolina, June 15 and 16. A Clinic is scheduled in Las Vegas, June 22 and 23. For the Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic schedule, see AOPA Online.
ASF PINCH-HITTER GROUND-SCHOOL COURSES
(Pinch-Hitter courses start at 9:30 a.m.)
The next Pinch-Hitterï¿½ Ground School will take place in Minneapolis on June 30. For more Pinch-Hitter courses, see AOPA Online.
ASF SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Oklahoma City on June 14. Topics are Spatial Disorientation and Single Pilot IFR, see AOPAï¿½Online.
To make submissions to the calendar, visit AOPA Online. For comments on calendar items, e-mail [email protected].