Aviation News, Headlines & Alerts
Category: <span>Infraero</span>

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Korean Jet hits American Vulture and Lands in Sao Paulo

What: Korean Air Boeing 777-200 en route from Sao Paulo to Seoul
Where: Sao Paulo Brazil
When: Wednesday
Who: There were 138 people on board
Why: The jet hit an American black vulture, (2 kilograms (4.4 lbs) and has a wingspan of 1.5 m) and suffered turbine engine failure. The plane landed without incident with no reported injuries.

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David Barioni Neto CEO

SAO PAULO, Nov 28 (Reuters) -TAM, Brazil’s largest airline appointed David Barioni Neto as its chief executive, replacing Marco Antonio Bologna, who stepped down following disaster after disaster over the past year. Though Bologna resigned, he remains a special adviser to TAM’s controlling shareholders, the airline said in a statement.

TAM hired Barioni Neto in September from rival Gol Linhas Aereas

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Pleas for Brazil to Drop Criminal Investigation

Brazil’s air traffic control problem did not begin in July when a TAM Linhas Aereas SA Airbus crashed into a warehouse in Sao Paulo, killing 199 people. There was another crash the year before, a crash which led to a criminal investigation.

The criminal investigation relates to this event: the mid-air collision between a GOL Boeing 737-800 and an Embraer Legacy executive jet last year The Boeing crashed into the Amazon jungle, killing all 154 people onboard. The business jet landed safely.

The International Federation of Airline Pilots’ Associations claims that “The bottom line is they’ve got the cart in front of the horse on this. If they’re serious about improving air safety in Brazil, they’ve got to wait for the (technical) report and swiftly apply any recommendations made by it.”

IFALPA is asking the Brazilian government to suspend the legislative inquiry and the Justice Ministry to adjourn criminal proceedings.”


Joseph Lepore of Bay Shore, New York, and Jan Paladino of Westhampton Beach, New York are the Legacy’s two American pilots. Additionally four Brazilian controllers face charges in the criminal case in connection with the accident.

The probe by Brazil’s air accident investigation body has yet to publish its findings.
The pilots’ association claims that “A Federal Police investigation running in parallel with the independent accident investigation … risks obscuring the benefits of a proper investigation.” The International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers also criticizes the police probe.

U.S. and Brazilian officials say the Legacy’s transponder and its collision-avoidance system were not functioning at the time of the crash, and that this went unnoticed by its American pilots. However, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration warns that pilots flying Embraer Legacy executive jets can accidentally switch off the transponder when placing their feet on a footrest under the instrument panel. The pilot’s left shoe can touch the switch controlling both instruments and accidentally switch them into “standby” mode.

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Infraero Oversight

Infraero, the airport authority, owns and operates Brazil’s commercial airports and has been overseeing Congonhas. Rainwater acumulating on the tarmac is a big issue for them, as it causes landing planes to skid. It’s such a big problem that the airport shut 18 times in the first quarter from flooded runways. Even before the accident, the short runway where the Tam Airbus skidded and crashed was scheduled to be retextured to handle water, but had been declared open for use in spite of not being properly surfaced to handle rain.

It was raining in Sao Paulo again yesterday.

Rescue workers have removed 173 badly charred bodies. The three story Tam Cargo center that was hit housed about 55 employees. Of those employees, three were killed, 11 were injured. and five are missing.

The word from officials investigating the crash is that the pilot attempted to take off when he realized the plane couldn’t stop.

An emergency meeting of congress was called to discuss the crash.

Dental records are being used to help identify the victims who are charred beyond recognition. All that remains of the airbus is the plane’s red tail fin.

It is common knowledge that the runways at Congonhas are too short.

A witness said, “We heard a loud skidding noise and saw the plane cross another lane very quickly, and then the plane disappeared. I felt the heat of the fire ball in my face. The fire was as big as a 25-story building.”

Witnesses feared the fire might trigger other explosions.

The plane’s black box is under investigation.

The company producing the Airbus is based in Toulouse, France, a subsidiary of European Aeronautic, Defence & Space Co.

It has been revealed that that particular plane had logged about 20,000 flight hours in 9,300 flights, and was powered by International Aero Engines’ engines.

The leader of the opposition in the lower house of congress, Julio Redecker, was one of the passengers.

Ten months ago, a Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes SA passenger plane collided in mid-air with a business jet over the Amazon, killing 154 people.

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Brazil Seizes Flight Control Data

According to the Tam Airlines transcript, the pilots panicked, crying “Oh my God!, Oh my God!” as they tried to slow down the jetliner which landed with inoperable spoilers and a thrust reverser.

“Come on! Come on! Turn, turn, turn, turn!” cried the co-pilot moments before a final utterance, “Oh no!,” was heard. The tape goes blank as the jetliner slammed into a cargo building at 137 mph and exploded.

In the wake of the airliner crash in Sao Paulo last month, Brazil’s top prosecutor Matheus Baraldi Magnan, seized records from key flight control centers in response to concern over Brazil’s civil aviation system.

Explaining the surprise data impoundment, Magnani said the military hindered his seizure, and “holds on to the information. It is not possible today to know the extent and frequency of problems. Only with that information will it be possible to evaluate and improve the system…The goal is to assure seizure of the incident records, and any information about problems in the air traffic control system, which will allow us to assess the risks passengers and crew face aboard aircraft.”

The government confirmed that France and aircraft builder Airbus filed a complaint over leaks of the Tam airlines flight’s black box.

The French bureau’s response on August third was that “All sorts of information, correct or incorrect, is circulating, along with speculation and attempts at explanations.”

“It is a serious error to try to draw conclusions on the basis of incomplete and unanalyzed information.”

A transcript of the cockpit voice recorder was released last week by a congressional committee investigating the accident on.
July 17 when the TAM Airbus 320 carrying 187 people overran the runway while landing at Sao Paulo’s Congonhas airport, crossed a road and slammed into an airport building.

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Brazil Air

“How many people will be killed before the Brazilian government stops the [air force’s] live experiments on the travelling public’s safety?” said Marc Baumgartner, the president of the International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers.

Brazil is rethinking its flight patterns

Across the country, frustrated passengers whose flights have been delayed or cancelled are rioting due to the long lines in Brazil’s airports. Underpaid and understaffed air traffic controllers are at the hub of a logistical nightmare. More than 10 government agencies oversee aviation.

Baumgartner accused the Brazilian government of “chasing scapegoats” among the Brazilian air traffic controllers instead of “re-engineering the necessary safety oversight and risk assessment to prevent Brazilian civil aviation from falling into deeper chaos.”

President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva promised to get tough on safety and build a new airport in São Paulo to ease congestion. “Our aviation system, in spite of the investments we have made in the expansion and modernization of almost all Brazilian airports, is passing through difficulties.” To ease the pressure, several measures are planned like bans on charter, cargo and executive flights to Congonhas. The question is what pressure will such changes actually ease: the stressed airport system, or the government taking the heat for the stressed airport system?

Aviation experts say that the Airbus 320 that crashed at Congonhas was too large for the airport’s short runways, that the runway was not textured properly and part of the plane’s supplementary braking system was not working. Last February, a federal judge prohibited the landing large types of aircraft at the airport, including Fokker 100, Boeing 737-800 and Boeing 737-700.

Carlos Gilberto Salvador Camacho, director of flight security for the National Union of Pilots, tokd a São Paulo newspaper last week. “There is subliminal pressure from the commercial airlines that if you don’t land there you are somehow hurting the companies that rely on their revenues from the passengers.”

“What exploded at Congonhas was not just the TAM jet and its almost 200 victims, but the credibility of the Brazilian system of civil aviation. Ten months ago, the country felt the impact of the worst disaster in its history of civil aviation, an incident which lifted the veil off the chaos in the industry, and we completely ignored it.” wrote Cezar Britto, the national president of the Order of Brazilian Lawyers after the Congonhas crash.

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Fired: Head of Brazil airport authority

Jose Carlos Pereira, the head of Infraero (Brazil’s airport authority) will be replaced, the second official to be fired because of the worst plane crash in Brazil’s history. The president fired Defense Minister Waldir Pires on July 25 and brought in former Supreme Court Chief Justice Nelson Jobim to overhaul the country’s ailing aviation. The defense ministry supervises civil aviation in Brazil.

The TAM crash is actually the second major plane crash in Brazil in 10 months. In September, 154 people were killed when a Boeing 737 clipped wings in mid-air with a private jet and crashed in the Amazon jungle.

The replacement is Sergio Gaudenzi, head of the Brazilian Space Agency. An official announcement is not expected until Monday.

Pereira has been under pressure to step down since the Airbus A320 crash. 187 people aboard the TAM flight and 12 on the ground were killed in the accident The crash caused a national outcry for improvement in air safety.

Gaudenzi’s first task will be to restore normalcy at Brazilian airports.In Brazil that many passengers are now canceling flights and taking buses instead.

Many travelers avoid Brazil altogether.

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