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MONTREAL – Despite new technologies and data available on runway accidents – the leading cause of aviation deaths – runway excursions have remained stable since at least 1995, James Burin said Wednesday.
The director of technical programs for Alexandria, Va.-based Flight Safety Foundation told the 2nd annual International Winter Operations conference hosted by the Air Canada Pilots Association that of the 1,508 aviation accidents between 1995 and 2009, 442, or nearly a third, were runway excursions. Only 10 were runway incursions.
An excursion is overshooting a runway, either on takeoff or landing, while an incursion is usually an unauthorized object – generally another aircraft – on a runway.
Formed in 1947, the not-for-profit foundation conducts studies on various aspects of aviation safety.
Burin, who led a study on runway excursions, said they are wrongly perceived by most as a pilot problem.
They’re not, he told the conference entitled Safety Is No Secret.
“They involve aircrews, airline management, air traffic control and regulators – they all play a role,” said the former U.S. Navy pilot who was a wing commander during the first Gulf War.
The reasons for the great disparity between incursions and excursions, Burin said, is the relative ease of preventing aircraft from bumping into each other – at low speeds.
Excursions usually involve high speeds, weather issues and human judgment.
One of the major obstacles hampering efforts to lower the incidence of these crashes, said Burin, is there is no single accepted standard measuring the conditions of runways.
The other “mystery,” said Burin, is the reluctance of pilots and air traffic to do more go-rounds in dodgy situations – to scrap a landing approach, go around the runway and try again.
“Why they don’t is really the question,” Burin said. “But it’s partly psychology, partly procedure – what’s considered safe.”
Most of the time, they are proven right, he noted – they land safely. And the 442 excursions resulted in 812 fatalities, statistically not excessive over 15 years.
Montreal’s International Civil Aviation Organization has isolated runway incidents as a major problem and has advocated one universal system to describe runway conditions.
Nancy Graham, director of ICAO’s air navigation bureau, told The Gazette in May that the rate of accidents is stable, but “that’s why we have a problem. As our traffic grows, we can expect these runway related accidents to grow as well, unless we act now.”
Runway accidents are “the No. 1 killer in commercial aviation today,” she said.
Technologies are available that would curb their frequency, Burin said, including one that can read aircraft wheels when braking, translate that info into runway conditions and relay it to the world in real time.
He could not say why it hasn’t been adopted.
Another was developed by Airbus and tells pilots if they should do a go-round to land safely.
Airbus has offered the system to anyone willing to use it.
Denis Gordon, director of standards and procedures for AéroMag, a Ville St. Laurent firm that handles aircraft de-icing at airports in Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa and Cleveland, among others, said that removing ice from a plane’s wings and fuselage was done with warm water until a 1989 accident in Dryden, Ont., that killed 28 people aboard a Fokker jet.
“Three years later, there was a nearly identical accident, except that this time, they waited too long between de-icing and takeoff.”
That gave birth to de-icing practices that are now standard at most of the world’s airports, Gordon said.…
Montenegro has a Stunning Coast, More impressive statistics emerge from the Balkans, where Montenegro reports a strong August performance in the wake of Albania welcoming 3 million visitors.
Countries in the Balkan region continue to post impressive tourism statistics, with Montenegro the latest to report an increase, according to a report on business web-portal Balkans.com on September 30, 2011.
According to the report, the tiny former Yugoslav republic with a population of 620,000 recorded 455,185 arrivals in August, an increase of 5.3% on the corresponding period the previous year. Overnight stays were up 12.2% at 3,556,078 nights. The statistics reflect an improved trend throughout the year, which has seen a 7.3% increase in arrivals in the first eight months of 2011 (1,102,639 in all). A small decrease in domestic tourists (2.4%) was outweighed by a strong foreign increase (11.1%).
The report gives an interesting breakdown into the origins of the tourists, with the two largest visitors from Serbia (27.9%) and Russia (20.3%). Bosnia and Herzegovina was next (7.6%), followed by neighbouring Kosovo (3.4%).
The Ministry of Tourism said yearly wage from tourism had tripled in the course of recent years, which it called a superb outcome for the nation.
“Montenegro is happy with what has been accomplished. Income tourism in the course of the most recent year was higher than in 2013,” it noted.
Concerning the structure of overnight remains of outside voyagers, most originated from the customarily inviting countries of Russia and Serbia. Guests from those two nations made up 60 for each penny of aggregate overnight remains.
Most voyagers went by the water-front range over the mid year months. Montenegro’s less touristy northern and focal areas were gone by just around 2 for each penny of enrolled sightseers.
Until recently joined to Serbia as a unified country, Serbia and Montenegro, the popularity of Montenegro’s coast to Serbs can be explained by traditional ties, common language, ease or access and a common Orthodox religion, while the strong Russian interest reflects the massive financial investment made in Montenegro in recent years before the global crisis, as well as a picturesque Orthodox resort country on the Adriatic with no visa complications for Russian visitors.
Crossing the Border from Montenegro to Albania Albania Tourism More Popular Than Montenegro, Says Google Search Croatian Tourism Enjoys a Bumper June: Up 20% on Previous Year While Montenegro’s tourism is best known for its stunning coastal walled towns and resorts, such as Budva, Kotor and Sveti Stefan, it also has an emerging adventure tourism offer inland in the mountains. It is perhaps therefore somewhat surprising that tourist overnight stays were so overwhelmingly coastal (98.8%), as opposed to 0.7% in the mountain areas, and just 0.2% in the capital, Podgorica.
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The encouraging statistics were released soon after its southern neighbor, Albania – a rising star of Balkan tourism, with its 350km of virtually untouched sandy coastline – posted even more impressive numbers in the year it had been tipped as Lonely Planet’s Top Destination. In a press conference on September 1, Minister of Tourism Aldo Bumci announced that more than 3,000,000 tourists had visited the country in the first eight months of 2011.
In a press conference, the minister elaborated on this figure, stating that 2,120,000 had been foreign visitors, while some 870,000 were Albanians living abroad. In addition to the Lonely Planet factor, Bumci attributed the 16% annual increase on improved infrastructure and quality of service.…