Friday, June 19, 2015

Cargo Carrier Threatened with Fine for Flying Freighter with Inefficient Equipment

Aircraft Must Comply with Minimum Equipment List
Shipping News Feature

US – The US Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has proposed a $66,000 civil penalty against Centurion Air Cargo, of Miami, Florida, for allegedly operating an aircraft that was not in compliance with Federal Aviation Regulations. The FAA alleges Centurion operated an MD-11 freighter jet on at least 12 flights between June 5 and 11, 2013 while failing to comply with its minimum equipment list (MEL) procedures after receiving a fuel quantity fault indication during a June 5 flight. An MEL specifies what equipment may be inoperable during a flight pending repair of that equipment.

A carrier is prohibited from flying an aircraft with inoperable equipment unless it complies with the MEL. The FAA alleges Centurion did not comply with the MEL for deferring this discrepancy by placarding the fuel quantity indicator to indicate it was inoperable and subsequently verifying the tail and forward auxiliary tanks were empty after refuelling.

Additionally, the FAA alleges that Centurion operated the aircraft on four of the flights after discovering that the door slide indicator did not light. Centurion did not follow MEL procedures for deferring this discrepancy again by placarding the fault marking the indicator light as inoperative and simply verifying that the evacuation slide system was adequately charged each day the aircraft flew.