Aviation News

February 2, 2012

Final Call: How a Simple Mistake Ruined a $240 Million Air Force Jet, American to Layoff 13,000 Employees

Photo of the Day: A V Australia Boeing 777-300ER (VH-VOZ) skips the drive-through at In-N-Out Burger on final approach to LAX
Photo of the Day: A V Australia Boeing 777-300ER (VH-VOZ) skips the drive-through at In-N-Out Burger on final approach to LAX. (Photo by Nicholas Vollaro)
• A new Pentagon report blames a civilian contractor for nearly taking down a Boeing 707-based E-8C JSTARS in 2009. The fault: During routine maintenance, he failed to remove a plug from a pressure relief valve in a fuel tank, causing the tank and the left wing to burst as the jet attempted an aerial refueling over the Middle East. The plane itself is a writeoff, but perhaps some of the expensive electronics inside could be used elsewhere. [Defense Tech]

American Airlines seeks to lay off about 13,000 employees and ditch its pension obligations. [The Atlantic]

• Perhaps of solace to those afraid of flying: Air travel is 93 percent safer than it used to be. [Bloomberg BusinessWeek]

• TSA screeners at LaGuardia Airport didn’t allow two devices onto a plane because they resembled pipe bombs, but didn’t bother notifying the cops for six hours. [New York Post]

• Airlines have been offering increasingly high quality wine selections onboard. So why not beer, too? [APEX]