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Instructor Warns of Column Failure

Broken control column from old Cherokee that failed in flight.

Broken control column from old Cherokee that failed in flight.

A long-time Manitoba flight instructor says owners of older Piper Cherokee models should thoroughly check the control columns in their aircraft after the yoke on his aircraft broke on landing in February.

Tom Larkin, of Pegasus Flight Services said the yoke literally broke free in his hands on short final for St. Andrews Airport north of Winnipeg.

“On our return to land on runway 13, somewhere below 50 feet, as I eased back on the control column to assist the student with his landing, we heard a loud, “snap” and the control column went limp,” Larkin said.  “As I always have the student trim for hands- free flight there was no change in aircraft pitch and the aircraft continued to land normally.”

“Immediate inspection behind the control panel by the AMO revealed a catastrophic failure of the “T-Bar” control assembly.”

Larkin said Transport Canada and the Transportation Safety Board are investigating but he’s worried there will be another failure before they get around to warning pilots.

He said they checked a yoke on an unflyable Cherokee and magnetic partical imaging revealed cracks in the same area of the  aircraft he was flying.

Larkin said he believes all older Cherokees should be similarly examined before further flight, noting a visual inspection might not reveal any cracks because the control columns are painted black.

Considering the ubiquitous nature of these aircraft in flight training world wide, the question becomes, ‘How safe are these aging Cherokees?'” he said. “It is not a case of will this happen again but “when” will this happen again. The next pilot, and student or passengers might not be so lucky.”

Buttonville Open Another Year

The owners of Buttonville Airport in Toronto have decided to keep the facility open a year longer than planned. The airport was slated for closure at the end of October but will be available until Oct. 31, 2017. No reason was given for the extension. In anticipation of the original deadline, many of the businesses
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JetBlue Talking CSeries

Bloomberg is reporting that JetBlue is reconsidering the purchase of CSeries airliners after it abandoned talks with Bombardier last year. The New York-based airline operates a lot of short-hop routes in the Northeast and already has Embraer E190 aircraft. It was going to buy another 22 Embraers but deferred that order for five years. If
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Air Support For Fort McMurray

The Royal Canadian Air Force, oil company aircraft and numerous other carriers and private operators are helping deal with the catastrophic fire in Fort McMurray. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has pledged the full support of the RCAF to help with air transportation needs in the oil community. There are four Griffon helicopters already on the
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COPA Partners with Canadian Aviator

Today (April 25, 2016) , we at Canadian Aviator Publishing are very excited to announce a new partnership with the Canadian Owners and Pilot’s Association (COPA).  This agreement transfers the responsibilities for COPA’s magazine, Web site and newsletter to Canadian Aviator Publishing.  It leverages our company’s publishing and technology expertise to streamline and modernize COPA’s
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Delta Might Buy CSeries

Bombardier likely has some “good news” for investors ahead of the company’s annual general meeting and that could mean some major order announcements for its CSeries airliner. The company moved up its earnings release by a full day to first thing Thursday morning. The earnings were to be released on Friday, the day of the
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Canso Projects Progress

The Fairview Aircraft Restoration Society is nearing completion of the ex-Buffalo Airways Canso it has been rebuilding for the past few years. And in Victoria, B.C., the Catalina Preservation Society has almost completed installation of blister windows in its big flying boat, which returned to the air last summer. The Alberta group has re-attached the
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Mars To Oshkosh

Coulson Flying Tankers’ Hawaii Mars will make its first appearance at EAA AirVenture in July. The huge flying boat will stage out of Lake Winnebago for flight demonstrations during the world’s biggest airshow. “This is the last flying Mars in the world and the largest warbird ever built,” said Wayne Coulson, chief executive officer of Coulson
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Nashville Crash Pilot Drunk

The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board says a Canadian pilot who died in a crash at Nashville International Airport was possibly drinking on board and didn’t have the training to land his Cessna 172 in heavy fog at night. Michael Callan rented the aircraft from the Windsor Flying Club on the evening of Oct. 28,
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Plane Hits Car

Hamilton Police say an aircraft clipped a car near Stoney Creek Airport last Sunday. Staff Sgt. Gary Heron said the car was traveling Highland Rd. at the south end of the airport. “The landing gear came in contact with a mobile motor vehicle,” said Heron. There were no injuries and Heron couldn’t say what phase
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Aviation Pride Event in Toronto

Canadian Aviation Pride and the U.S.-based National Gay Pilots Association will hold a networking and commercial event in Toronto June 4-5. Northern Escape will involve exhibitors such as airlines, flight schools and other services and vendors looking to recruit and sell products. “Our goal is to connect outstanding members and allies of the LGBT aviation
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