Andrew Compart andrew.compart@aviationweek.com

Andrew Compart andrew.compart@aviationweek.com
Articles
Delta Investing In Portable Tablets To Offset DOT Fine 

The U.S. Transportation Department (DOT) fined Delta Air Lines $750,000 after concluding that, for the second time in four years, the carrier violated rules regarding passengers who are bumped from flights. But Delta can offset $425,000 of the fine by investing that money in portable tablets and other improvements to its denied boarding system.

European Carriers Prefer 100-Seat MRJ, Mitsubishi Marketer Says 
WASHINGTON - Interest among European airlines in acquiring Mitsubishi Aircraft regional jets is focused primarily on a 100-seat version that the Japanese manufacturer has not officially launched. (Concept: Mitsubishi Aircraft)
FAA Still In Dark On Safety Inspector Needs, Report Says 
The FAA still cannot reliably determine how many flight standards safety inspectors it needs and where for commercial aviation oversight, which could be causing some staffing shortages, the Transportation Department’s inspector general’s office says in a new audit report.
Delta-Virgin Atlantic Deal Could Provide Vendor Opportunities 
Virgin Atlantic CEO Craig Kreeger says they will be interested to talk to Delta about fuel or combined purchasing opportunities. (Photo: Airbus)
Do Not Rely On Southwest To Restrain Post-Merger Fares, GAO Says

The U.S. Justice Department, currently analyzing the proposed American Airlines-US Airways merger for antitrust concerns, should be wary of relying on the market presence of Southwest Airlines to hold down post-merger fares, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) cautions.

The GAO’s warning relies on a study published in the May issue of the Transportation Research Board’s journal, and was delivered to Congress by the GAO in June 19 testimony to the Senate’s aviation subcommittee on how the merger might affect markets.

Mitsubishi, Embraer Explain Plans For Overcoming RJ Weight Issues 
WASHINGTON and LE BOURGET - Embraer and Mitsubishi have different views on how their next-generation regional jets will adapt to U.S. scope limitations on aircraft weight. (Art: Mitsubishi)
Alaska Pilot Deal Preserves Flight Outsourcing Freedom 

The tentative agreement that Alaska Airlines reached with its pilots union includes no aircraft size-related restrictions on outsourcing flights, but does add new job protections for the crew members if Alaska acquires or is acquired by another carrier.

Weighty Issue Could Limit MRJ90, E-175-E2 Use In U.S. 
WASHINGTON - The weight of Mitsubishi's MRJ and Embraer's E2 families or relevant scope clauses must be addressed before the next generation of regional aircraft can enter service in the U.S. (Art: Mitsubishi)
Supreme Court To Judge Airline Immunity On Threat Reports 

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case that the Obama administration and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) contend could have a chilling effect on airlines’ reporting of suspicious activity that may threaten the safety of a flight.

Judges Rule On Ex-Im Financing, But Impact Remains Unclear 
WASHINGTON - In a decision that had both sides declaring victory, a federal appeals court has ruled that the Export-Import Bank’s loan guarantees to Air India for the acquisition of 30 Boeing widebody aircraft can stand—at least for now—but also ordered the bank to reconsider the deal’s potential impact on U.S. jobs. (Photo: Boeing)
United Plans Seasonal Demand Swaps Between 787 And 777 
WASHINGTON - United Airlines plans to use at least some of its Boeing 787 aircraft as a low-season, long-haul market replacement for Boeing 777s, which in turn will be shifted to long-haul markets entering their peak season. (Photo: United Airlines)
Delta Explains MD-90 “No-Brainer” 

Delta Air Lines decided to increase its MD-90 fleet from 16 aircraft to its current strength of 65 because it could acquire them at 20% of the cost of a new Boeing 737-800, with engines that are just as fuel-efficient, the airline’s president Ed Bastian says.

“It clearly was a no-brainer,” says Bastian, who defended the carrier’s reliance on used jets during a presentation at the Deutsche Bank Global Industrials and Basic Materials Conference.

Southwest Cautious On Summer Demand 
WASHINGTON - Southwest Airlines expects to report a “low single-digit” decline in passenger unit revenue for the second quarter, and remains concerned about the potential impact of federal budget cuts and higher taxes on demand. (Photo: Southwest Airlines)
Moment Of Truth Approaching For Frontier 

The sale of Frontier Airlines will happen soon, or not at all, says owner Republic Airways Holdings, noting that the divestiture, “if it occurs,” will be completed early in the third quarter.

“We will know more in the next two to four weeks and will update you when we have something we can say publicly,” the holding company said in slides presented at the Cowen and Company Investors Conference June 11.

A non-disclosure agreement prevents Republic from releasing any additional details right now, it added.

Unit Revenue Gains Elusive For U.S. Carriers In May 

Major U.S. carriers reported either year-over-year declines or negligible gains in passenger unit revenue in May, dashing any expectations that significant unit revenue growth would resume after an early Easter made March particularly strong and April misleadingly weak because of the shift in holiday travel.

Estimated performance for May—as measured by passenger revenue per available seat mile—included year-over-year declines of 2% at Southwest Airlines, 1.8% at American Airlines (including American Eagle Airlines) and 1% at US Airways.

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