Friday, January 11, 2013
FAA to Review Design, Manufacture and Assembly of Boeing 787After a spate of recent high-profile mishaps involving Boeing's new 787 aircraft, the FAA has announced plans for a comprehensive review of the aircraft.
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
ICAO to Address Air Traffic Controller FatigueAccording to Air Traffic Management, ICAO will begin work this year on developing SARPs pertaining to air traffic controller fatigue risk management. The hope is that the SARPs would be ready for adoption in 2015.
Monday, January 7, 2013
Qatar Airways, Gulf Air to Operate Domestic Flights In Saudi ArabiaIn the waning days of 2012 Saudi Arabia announced that it had chosen Qatar Airways and Gulf Air to be the two foreign carriers granted permission to serve domestic routes within Saudi Arabia. The move is intended to increase competition within Saudi Arabia's domestic market in order to benefit passengers.
Friday, January 4, 2013
While We Were Gone...
Below is a brief rundown of the most important developments in aviation law and policy that took place while the blog was on holiday break:
- The EU announced a new agenda for external aviation policy.
- Lufthansa, United and Air Canada have offered concessions on the Frankfurt-New York route in response to concerns raised by the European Commission's antitrust investigation into the airlines' Star Alliance partnership.
- President Obama signed the No-Hassle Flying Act allowing the Transportation Security Administration to waive screening requirements for baggage that has already been screened at foreign airports operating under aviation security preclearance agreements with the United States.
- American Airlines and US Airways took additional steps toward merging into the world's largest airline.
- The Portuguese government postponed the privatization of flag carrier TAP Air Portugal.
Regular blogging will resume next week.
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Canada Adopts New Airfare Advertising RulesThe Canadian Transportation Agency has announced new regulations requiring carriers to include all taxes, fees and charges in their advertised ticket prices. Carriers can be fined up to $25,000 for violations. The U.S. introduced similar rules earlier this year.
Saturday, December 8, 2012
Blogging HiatusThe blog will be quiet this coming week. Regularly scheduled blogging will resume on Monday, December 17.
Friday, December 7, 2012
California Sues Over Fly Delta AppThe State of California has filed a lawsuit in state court alleging that Delta Airlines' Fly Delta mobile app violates the State's Online Privacy Protection Act because it fails to provide users with privacy warnings. The California law is the only statute of its kind in the United States so Delta will not be facing similar suits elsewhere.
Thursday, December 6, 2012
U.S. Airline Industry Hoping for National PolicyThe U.S. civil aviation industry is currently engaging in a campaign to place a national airline policy on the political agenda. The wish list includes a reduced jet fuel tax, a modernized air traffic control system, and less regulation. The most interesting item in the linked article was an expression of optimism from Airlines for America president Nick Calio that Congress would put forward legislation to create a national airline policy. Given the difficulty Congress had in getting an FAA reauthorization bill passed, congressional action toward the development of a national airline policy would be a substantial departure from recent history.
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Emirates in Talks to Buy FastjetEmirates is currently in discussions to acquire Fastjet, a South African budget airline.
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
EU Member States Miss Single European Sky DeadlinesThe EU is threatening legal action against those of its Member States that are behind in their obligations to implement new rules merging their airspaces.
Monday, December 3, 2012
Heathrow Slots Behind Delta Interest in Virgin AtlanticReports today indicate that Delta has entered discussions regarding the acquisition of Singapore Airlines' 49 percent stake in Virgin Atlantic. Delta appears primarily interested in access to Virgin Atlantic's Heathrow slots. Virgin has control over more Heathrow slots than any carrier except British Airways, and was recently was awarded all of the slots BA was forced to divest to secure approval of its acquisition of bmi. There is speculation that one of Delta's SkyTeam partners, such as Air France-KLM, might be interested in purchasing a small amount of shares from Richard Branson to give the allies an effective controlling stake in Virgin Atlantic, but Branson says he is not selling.
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Obama Signs ETS Prohibition ActYesterday President Obama signed the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme Prohibition Act of 2011. The Act instructs the Secretary of Transportation to prohibit U.S. operators from participating in the EU emissions trading scheme if he or she determines such a prohibition to be in the public interest. The administration undoubtedly hopes that the Secretary will never have to make that determination. The recently announced one-year suspension of the ETS's application to foreign carriers will delay the impact of the EU ETS Prohibition Act for at least one year. ICAO is attempting to negotiate an acceptable international agreement on aviation emissions reduction in the intervening period.
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Passengers Entitled to Compensation for Lost Baggage Checked in Another Passenger's NameThe Court of Justice for the European Union has ruled that the Montreal Convention requires airlines to compensate passengers for lost items even if those items were stored in baggage checked in another passenger's name. The primary effect of this ruling will be to increase the number of passengers that can claim damages for one lost bag. This is significant because the Montreal Convention caps damages at 1000 Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) per passenger. In the case in question Iberia lost two suitcases belonging to a Spanish family of four. The CJEU's decision allows the family to recover for lost property belonging to the two children, increasing the family's total potential recovery to 4000 SDRs rather than the 2000 SDRs they would have been limited to had the CJEU only required Iberia to compensate the two parents in whose names the suitcases were checked.
Monday, November 26, 2012
Court Dismisses 9/11 Claim Against United AirlinesLast week a U.S. federal court judge dismissed United Airlines from a lawsuit seeking damages from the 2001 hijacking of American Airlines Flight 11 and subsequent crashing of the aircraft into the World Trade Center. The complaint alleged that United Airlines should be held partially responsible for injuries caused by the terrorist attack because United shared authority over a security screening checkpoint at Portland International Jetpoint through which two of the hijackers passed before flying to Boston, where the hijackers would once again pass through another security checkpoint before boarding Flight 11. The first security checkpoint was United's only connection to Flight 11.
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
EC Probes State Aid to airBaltic, Adria AirwaysThe European Commission has opened in-depth inquiries concerning Latvian carrier airBaltic and Slovenian carrier Adria Airways. Both airlines are majority-owned by their respective states and have received loans or capital injections over the past few years that may violate EU state aid rules.
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Anti-ETS Bill Moves to President's DeskThe U.S. Congress today passed the final version of the legislation prohibiting U.S. carriers from complying with the EU ETS. The House of Representatives had passed an earlier draft in 2011, but needed to approve changes that had been made in the Senate's version of the bill. President Obama has yet to give any indication whether or not he will sign the bill, and environmental groups are hoping a veto will initiate a strong second term effort to combat climate change. As a result of the recently announced one-year ETS suspension, the short-term consequences of the President's decision will be largely political.
Monday, November 12, 2012
EU Agrees to Delay ETS Impacts for One YearIn major news today, EU Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard announced that the European Commission was willing to suspend the application of its ETS to flights to and from non-EU States for an additional year to allow ICAO time to work toward a global aviation emissions program. Flights between EU States will still be subject to the scheme, placing EU carriers at a competitive disadvantage. The EU Member States still need to approve the proposal. The announcement follows last week's ICAO council meeting, where three potential emissions mitigation measures were reportedly discussed. The EU may have heard enough at the meeting to generate optimism that ICAO would produce a solution in 2013. Regardless of what was said at the meeting, some kind of enforcement delay was probably necessary as ICAO is not expected to have its plan ready by April when the charges under the EU plan come due. With carriers from China and India refusing to comply the prospect of a standoff over fines, possibly escalating to flight bans, loomed over the industry. This announcement better aligns the EU and ICAO timeframes, keeping alive the possibility that the EU will permanently exempt foreign carriers if a sufficient international regime is agreed upon. It is hoped that with the delay the EU regulation will no longer distract from talks regarding a global solution. The pressure is now squarely on ICAO to foster an agreement by the end of next year.
Friday, November 9, 2012
Autumn Issue of IALP
The Volume 12, Autumn 2012 issue of the International Aviation Law Institutes's journal, Issues in Aviation Law and Policy (IALP), will be available early next month. The following articles will appear in the issue:
- Ruwantissa Abeyratne, Aircraft Emissions - In Search of a Global Framework for Market-Based Measures
- Mitchell Garber, Douglas Amster & Douglas McQueen, Undisclosed Medical Conditions in the International Aviation Community: The Risks of Medical Certification Systems Based Upon Voluntary Self-Disclosure
- David E. Rapoport, Jan Brown & Lindsey A. Epstein, Babies Have a Right to a Safe Seat with Proper Restraints - The Infant Seat Exception Should be Abandoned
- Pamela C. Hicks, Injuries from Turbulence: Forecasting Conditions for Liability
- Ana Dedijer, Extending the Aviation Regime of the European Union: The EU External Aviation Policy Toward Its Neighbors
- Moses George, Private Airports in India - Private or Public?
Blog readers interested in subscribing to IALP, ordering back issues, or perusing a list of published articles may do so at the Institutes's website here.