Airline Apocalypse: Failed and Defunct Airlines

Dave Pflieger highlights a few once-popular airlines that have gone the way of the dodo.

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Commercial aviation may be barely a century old, but few would argue that it’s going anywhere anytime soon. Flight is still the most efficient way to travel, and it’s shaped the way we interact with the world in truly dramatic ways. But just because air travel is here for the long haul doesn’t mean that there aren’t casualties along the way. Here are some once famous airlines that have failed to stay with us over the years.

Eastern Air Lines

Miami-based Eastern Air Lines was once one of the biggest players in commercial air, but it became a lesson in the powerful role workers can play in a company’s feasibility. The first cause for concern came in 1988, as more economical alternatives started to cut into Eastern’s bottom line, but it was the deregulation in the years that followed which served as the nail in the coffin. An attempt to freeze out protesting members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers led to a galvanization of multiple related unions, and Eastern Air Lines was left crippled. They were forced to declare bankruptcy in 1989 and finally ended operations at the beginning of 1991.

Braniff International Airlines

Few airlines had the flair that Braniff International did. Their colorful uniforms, designed by Emilio Pucci, especially made them stand apart from the competition. But it was the company’s notable confidence that got the best of it. An attempt at aggressive expansion in a time when fuel costs peaked and economy alternatives created a highly competitive market drove Braniff into deep debt and rapidly led to their dissolution.

Lakers Airways Skytrain

The problem with Lakers was in many ways the polar opposite of Braniff. They entered the market during the glut of new competitors in the early 1980s and promised tremendously low cost flights, often as much as half that of the major airlines. Unfortunately, the model quickly proved unsustainable, and they ended up as just another forgotten experiment in a boom notable for them.

Interflug

It could be argued that Interflug was a victim of geopolitics, but there had been problems with its structure for a long time. Based out of East Berlin, its planes suffered from poor fuel efficiency and noise protection. When the Berlin wall fell, a number of airlines expressed interest in purchasing Interflug, but the airline ultimately failed to find a serious buyer.

The Bombardier Jet is Breaking Records

Dave Pflieger highlights the Bombardier jet’s record-breaking achievements.

Joseph Armand Bombardier established his first company in 1942. He manufactured snowmobiles. By 1986, he decided to expand his horizons by venturing into the aeronautical industry. Today, the company is widely known for creating luxury personal aircraft and other business jets. The crafts created by the company include the Lear, Challenger and Global jet series. Recently, Bombardier’s Global 7500 jet broke the record for distance and speed.

In early March, a Global 7500 jet left Van Nuys Airport at 7:01 A.M. Pacific time. The jet landed at Teterboro Airport in New York three hours and 54 minutes later at 1:55 P.M. Eastern time. The flight broke the coast-to-coast flight from one major financial city to another. During the course of the flight, the aircraft flew at an average speed of Mach 0.92. During the flight, the craft was able to achieve a top speed of Mach 0.925. The previous record was held by an aircraft manufactured by a different company.

On March 24, 2019, a Bombardier Global 7500 jet left an airport in Singapore and arrived in Tucson, Arizona. The jet flew 8,152 nautical miles in 16 hours. The flight was the longest accomplished by a business jet. The plane averaged Mach 0.85 during the course of the flight. The jet also flew at a sustained speed of Mach 0.925 for two hours.

A few days later, a Global 7500 lest Westchester County Airport in New York at 6:26 A.M. Eastern time. The plane landed at London Luton Airport five hours and 26 minutes later at 3:52 P.M. The flight was deemed to be the fastest for an aircraft of its class between two international cities. During the flight, the jet achieved a top speed of Mach 0.925 and averaged a speed of Mach 0.92.

Distance, Speed and Luxury

Business passengers are not only able to arrive at their designated destination at impressive speeds regardless of distance, clients additionally travel in style. The Global 7500 jets feature four separate cabin areas referred to as the Club Suite, the Conference Suite, the Master Suite and the Media Suite. The Suites also feature seating equipped with controls to regulate lighting, multimedia systems and temperature. the Master Suite.

The Conference Suite also serves as the dining area complete with a dining table and six chairs. The Master Suite comes with a full-sized bed, a shower and a fully functional kitchen along with a crew suite.

What You Need to Know About Working in Aviation

Dave Pflieger highlights some of the most important things you need to know if you’re working in aviation.

If you are passionate about flying and are looking to play an integral role in the ever-expanding aviation field, find out more about the kind of available airport jobs and get suggestions for preparing for aviation management jobs by reading this article.

What’s Aviation Management?

When you obtain a degree in aviation management, you’ll have the qualifications to oversee an airline, an airport, or a collection of airport maintenance workers and the day-to-day operations of each. Aviation managers also have the choice to work in the aeronautical engineering field to oversee aircraft manufacturing. Aviation is increasing as an overall field with a great number of openings projected to be possible in the upcoming years.

Types of Airport Roles

The demand for commercial and private pilots is expected to skyrocket in the next couple of decades because many of today’s pilots will retire and airlines need to prepare for the release of new aircraft. According to a 2018 Forbes publication, Boeing predicts that aviation is going to need 790,000 fresh pilots by 2037 to fulfill the growing demand. Pilots aren’t the sole aviation management position in observing demand.

In order to read the full article, written by Dave Pflieger, make sure to click the link.

PenAir to Become Subsidiary of Ravn Air Group

Ravn Air Grouppic
Ravn Air Group
Image: flyravn.com

A graduate of the United States Naval Academy and the Emory University School of Law, David “Dave” Pflieger has held executive positions with airlines such as Virgin America, Delta Air Lines, Fiji Airways, and Silver Airways.

Since 2017, David Pflieger has led Ravn Air Group, one of the leading regional air transportation companies in Alaska. Recently, the owner of Ravn Air Group, J.F. Lehman & Company, received approval to purchase the assets of PenAir, an Alaskan airline.

In October 2018, the sale was approved by the court that is handling PenAir’s bankruptcy proceedings. PenAir filed for bankruptcy protection in the previous year.

At a bankruptcy auction, J.F. Lehman & Company made the winning bid to purchase PenAir’s assets for $12.3 million. PenAir will become a subsidiary of Ravn Air Group, where it will continue to operate as a separate company with a separate operating certificate.

In order for the deal to become final, the Federal Aviation Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation must approve the purchase. The transaction is great news for PenAir, local communities, and residents of Alaska, as it will save thousands of direct and indirect jobs, ensure vital service to communities served by each carrier, and it will allow seamless travel and expanded service throughout the State.

Ravn Air employs approximately 1,000 workers, operates 400 flights per day, and has partnerships with major international airlines such as Alaska Airlines, American Airlines and United Airlines.

PenAir, which was founded by Orin Seybert in Bristol Bay in 1955, has established itself as one of the leading air transportation companies in Alaska over the past six decades. In addition to serving six cities across the southwest part of the state and down the Aleutian Islands, the company is known for its safety record, its strong relationship with the Seafood industry, and as the first regional airline in Alaska to receive certification from the FAA for its Safety Management System (SMS).

For more information on this story, read here.