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Transportation Safety Board of Canada Wants Changes in Commercial Balloon Operations Print E-mail
Written by Glen Moyer   
Sunday, 14 December 2008 14:27

(Gatineau, Quebec, March 27, 2008) - The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) today released two Interim Aviation Safety Recommendations following the accident (A07C0151) that occurred northeast of Winnipeg, Manitoba, on August 11, 2007 involving a FireFly 12B hot air balloon in a commercial operation.

In its Aviation Safety Recommendation documents forwarded to the Minister of Transport, the TSB notes that balloons are considered aircraft under the Aeronautics Act. However, while balloons can carry up to 12 fare-paying passengers, they are not regulated at a level comparable to that of other commercial aircraft operators. The TSB recommends that:

Last Updated on Sunday, 08 March 2009 15:58
NTSB Issues Probable Cause Report in 2007 Fiesta Fatal Accident Print E-mail
Written by Glen Moyer   
Wednesday, 07 May 2008 08:15

The NTSB cited pilot error as one of eleven factors in the accident that left one balloon passenger dead during the 2007 Fiesta in Albuquerque, NM. 60-year old Rosemary Wooley Phillips died after falling from a balloon that was snagged by a power line. The NTSB report says the pilot was distracted by another balloon that struck a house and was flying too low. The report also cites weather conditions (high winds) and flawed crew procedures as factors that contributed to the accident.

Last Updated on Sunday, 12 April 2009 13:18
FAA issues new Ballooning Handbook Print E-mail
Written by Glen Moyer   
Friday, 28 March 2008 06:47

(The following is from BFA member Dave Sullivan) 

I’m pleased to announce that the new Balloon Flying Handbook,
FAA-H-8083-11A, has been posted to the faa.gov website, and is available
for download. A link is at the bottom of this e-mail.

Last Updated on Sunday, 12 April 2009 13:19
Transport Canada Urges Safety Improvements in Commercial Balloons Print E-mail
Written by Glen Moyer   
Thursday, 27 March 2008 09:05

In the wake of a balloon accident near Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada in August of last year the Transportation Board of Canada has issued two interim safety recommendations for commercial hot air balloons. In general they recommend "that passenger-carrying commercial balloon operations provide a level of safety equivalent to that established for other aircraft of equal passenger-carrying capacity" and that "balloons carrying fare-paying passengers have an emergency fuel shut-off."

Last Updated on Sunday, 12 April 2009 13:17
Paper or Plastic? FAA Rules Plastic by 2010 Print E-mail
Written by Glen Moyer   
Saturday, 01 March 2008 06:27

FAA Issues Final Rule On Plastic Pilot Certificates
Requires Changeover By March 2010

 When it comes to the question of "paper or plastic?" the FAA has given its final answer. This week, the FAA released its final rule on the matter, announcing the required switch to plastic pilot certificates by March 31, 2010.

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association states its members "overwhelmingly" supported the move, when the FAA first proposed the matter in 2005. In addition to being far more durable than traditional paper certificates, the plastic cards also offer greater resistance to counterfeiting.

Last Updated on Sunday, 12 April 2009 13:21
FAA Issues Super Bowl TFR Print E-mail
Written by Glen Moyer   
Tuesday, 11 December 2007 03:16
On December 9th the FAA issued a Temporary Flight Restriction in the form of Notam FD7 / 6849 and governing air operations over the upcoming Super Bowl in Glendale, Arizona on February 3rd. Not surprisingly the TFR prohibits most all aircraft operations, including balloons, for a 30 nautical mile radius around the University of Phoenix stadium and from the surface to 18,000 feet. For more information see www.tfr.faa.gov.
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