FAA proposes fines against Spirit and air taxi service
South Florida Business Journal – by Bill Frogameni
The Federal Aviation Administration has proposed fining two local air passenger carriers for alleged violations.
Miramar-based Spirit Airlines faces a $50,000 civil fine for allegedly failing to replace a faulty elevator aileron computer after an aircraft experienced an uncommanded pitch down of the nose while flying between Orlando and San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Aug. 21, 2009.
Spirit, the largest carrier at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, has 30 days to answer the FAA’s proposed penalty.
“Safety is Spirit’s No. 1 priority, and our maintenance followed all appropriate procedures,” Spirit spokeswoman Misty Pinson wrote in an e-mail. “Spirit is responding accordingly to the proposed penalty.”
The FAA also proposed a $63,525 fine for Fort Lauderdale-based Friendship Airways, which operates the Yellow Air Taxi commuter service between Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and Caribbean destinations.
The fine is “for operating two Cessna 402 aircraft on 77 commuter flights in violation of its air carrier certificate and operations specifications,” the FAA said in a news release. “The FAA alleged that the two aircraft were not authorized for use for the flights between June 21 and July 21, 2008, because they were not listed on the company’s operating specifications for commuter service.”
The company has 30 days to respond to the proposed civil penalty. It did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
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