Transport Airlines

Did the FAA get too cozy with US Airways in maintenance probe?

Excerpt from Forbes

May 10, 2013 11:03 am

Skift Take

The FAA is supposed to regulate the airlines, and not serve as a booster, a role it takes on at times. These revelations about the FAA and US Airways, coming after the FAA’s slow-to-react role in the Boeing Dreamliner escapade, only adds fuel to the fire in further allegations about a hand in glove relationship.

— Dennis Schaal

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Documents and testimony produced in a case against two US Airways mechanics for allegedly falsifying maintenance documents involving inspections of Airbus A-319 aircraft indicate that FAA regulators may have crossed ethical lines in sharing enforcement information with USAirways in the course of a related, major investigation of its maintenance practices.

According to the February 20, 2013. sworn deposition of the FAA inspector in charge of the cases against the mechanics and the airline, the inspector, Klaus Ploschnitznig, prepared a PowerPoint briefing on potential US Airways maintenance violations for an internal FAA management presentation January 20, 2010, shortly after the alleged violations were discovered.  Although the briefing was intended to be a preliminary status briefing to FAA officials charged with US Airways oversight, the inspector testified that he was surprised to learn that the office’s assistant manager had allowed a US Airways  executive to attend the briefing.

 

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