Tivat expansion

Tivat Airport passenger terminal
The second largest airport in Montenegro is being expanded both service and capacity wise. A week after B&H Airlines launched flights from Podgorica to Skopje, Montenegro Airlines has launched flights to the Macedonian capital from Tivat. The flights, which operate 4 times per week, were launched last Sunday, on June 28. There were a total of 70 passengers to and from Skopje on Montenegro Airlines’ Fokker F100. On this occasion Lela Agović from As-trans Komerc, the representative of Montenegro Airlines in Skopje, said that the new line was established at the beginning of the summer tourist season and Macedonian citizens are very interested in it. She added that Montenegro Airlines has harmonised its flights from Skopje in a way that passengers from Macedonia can transfer to other flights towards European capitals. Montenegro Airlines recently launched services to from Tivat to Paris and Niš while it established services to Copenhagen and Rome yesterday. Flights from Tivat to Priština will begin on July 5. Montenegro Airlines has begun using Tivat as a testing ground for future services from Podgorica. If a certain service is successful from Tivat, it will be ended at the end of October and transferred to Podgorica.

Meanwhile, the general aviation parking at Tivat Airport has been expanded. The investment was worth 2.5 million Euros. The new expanded parking apron allows 6 smaller general aviation aircraft to be parked or two larger aircraft such as the Airbus A320 and the B737.

Auster Agricolas - Part 2

. . . or should it be Agricolae?

Interesting and historic photographs by or via Murray Kirkus, who lived in the Wellington area at the time of Agricola activity.

c/n B.102
Was sent to the NZ Auster agents, Bristol Aeroplane Co. NZ Ltd., Wellington, for a demonstration tour as ZK-BMJ. Sold to Airlift (NZ) Ltd., Kilbirnie and registered to them in October 1956.
At Rongotai, probably with Airlift:

Parked on an airstrip, unknown location:

When this company folded in 1960, Claude Stephenson (their chief pilot) formed a new company, Associated Farmers Aerial Work Ltd. based at Martinborough and BMJ was registered to this new company in August 1960.
ZK-BMJ was hired to Air Contracts Ltd., Masterton later in 1960 until damaged in a crash 8th May 1961 - anyone know the location of this incident?.

Associated Farmers rebuilt the aircraft:

c/n B.103
Followed a similar path, being sold through the Agents to Airlift (NZ) Ltd. as ZK-BMK from May 1957. Under their ownership, crashed into Waingawa River, after failed t/off at Hood, Masterton, 11May57.
ZK-BMK at Rongotai May 1957:

c/n B.104
Imported through the Agents as ZK-BML, went to Rangitikei Air Services Ltd. of Taihape in April 1957. Fitted out as a sprayer. Crashed & DBF near Taihape 22Jan59.
Note the built-in spray rig:

c/n B.106
Imported through the agents as ZK-BMN. Remained unsold, and stored at Blenheim (Woodbourne?) until sold to Air Contracts Ltd. in 1961 (replacement for ZK-BMJ?). Passed on to Associated Farmers and registered to them in October 1963. Crashed 5mls SE of Paraparaumu 11Mar65, out of fuel. Pilot M H Lacey.
Under Air Contracts ownership, location looks to be Masterton airfield:

c/n B.107 (later c/n B.118)
Allotted ZK-BMO, but the slow sales of BMM and BMN meant that this aircraft was retained in the UK and became G-APFZ with Aerial Agriculture Ltd. of Lasham with whom it flew about 300hrs. (ZK-BMO was reallocated to a Beaver). WFU Rearsby after CofA expiry 22Apr60. Rebuilt at Rearsby with a new c/n B118 and sold to Air Contracts Ltd., Masterton. First NZ flight at Masterton 8 October 1962 as ZK-CCV. Operated from Masterton until crashed Pongaroa, Masterton, and partially DBF 19Feb63. Pilot Barry Cook.
Operational on a farm strip, date and place unknown:

As Sir Minty has already said, we are still looking for a photograph of ZK-BMM G-APFZ and also (a long shot) a photograph of Agricola c/n B.108 which was allotted ZK-BMP but also remained unsold in the UK. Completed with c/n B.117 and went to British Guiana as VP-GAZ where it crashed 27 June 1959. The remains of this aircraft were then returned to the Auster factory. (ZK-BMP was reallocated to a Cessna 180).

We can but hope!

What ever happened to :- this Cessna A37 ?

This image taken on a seriously inclement day at Ardmore on 18-03-2000 shows a Cessna A37 of uncertain parentage.
The only marks noted being "10841" which may make it Cessna A37B-CE Dragonfly 71-0841.
Can anybody provide more information please.

Question time # 57 Resolved

cessna185 has scored.
It is indeed a zoom in on the cockpit of the Percival Provost T Mk1 ZK-SGN, c/n PAC/F/226 .
Top photo shows it at Masterton on 28-02-2008 in its Omani marks.
Delivery to the RAF was on 20-09-1954 with the serial WW397. It was withdrawn from use on 07-11-1969 and became instructional airframe 8060M at Halton UK. It then moved to become a gate guardian at Lyneham in 1979. It was rescued from this site and restored to join the UK civil register as G-BKHP on 26-08-1982 with Flt Lt Mike Crymble and first flew on 28-05-1983. Just over ten years later (12-11-1993) its UK registration was cancelled as it moved to Australia to become VH-OIL with Keith Clarke on 13-09-1994.
It came to NZ and was listed as ZK-SGN for James Slade on 05-11-2002 until re-registered to Owlco Trust on 27-02-2003.
It appeared at Wanaka Warbirds in 2004 in the above temporary Japanese markings.
Below is a view of it during its time as G-BKHP in the UK.
This aircraft is currently for sale.

Big drop

Not busy at Jat reservation offices
With the absence of a major international event, like Eurovision in May 2008, Jat failed to replicate its record May passenger figures from last year and instead reported a passenger decline of 30%, one of the worst for any national European carrier. The airline has published its May results as June draws to a close. Jat transported a total of 81.577 passengers, 189 tonnes of cargo (down 26%) and 49 tonnes of mail (up 6%) in May 2009. In May this year the average cabin load factor (CLF) amounted to 55% compared to 68% in May 2008. Despite the drop in the CLF, Jat still records the highest figures in this field out of all the other ex-Yu airlines.

Jat seems to have largely given up on one of its most important markets – Montenegro. It has decreased flight to the country by 52% which has resulted in a 61% drop in passengers in May 2009 when compared to May 2008. Jat has handed over most of its passengers to rival Montenegro Airlines which now often performs flights with its new Embreaer to Belgrade from Podgorica and Tivat. Due to the charter wars between Turkey and Serbia during May 2009, the number of charter flight operations was decreased by 47%. This has been normalised as of June this year. This summer there are a few standout destination performers which are reporting outstanding results for Jat. They are Dusseldorf in Germany and Larnaca in Cyprus.

Jat will hope that this 30% passenger drop is the lowest point of its passenger transportation this year. This June it expects that it will see passenger growth thanks to the 2009 Summer Universiade Games which will continue through July.

Fourth Dash

Croatia Airlines’ newest fleet member - 9A-CQD
Croatia Airlines has received its fourth Dash 8 Q400 aircraft. The aircraft arrived in Zagreb a few days ago and has received the Croatia Airlines livery as well as the registration 9A-CQD. The aircraft has been named Dalmatia, after the Southern coastal region of Croatia. The aircraft was built during 2009 and has already entered scheduled service for Croatia Airlines. The national Croatian carrier now has a total of 4 Bombardiers and a further two orders for this type of aircraft. It also has a further 4 options for the Bombardier.

The delivery of the Bombardier was made under an agreement Croatia Airlines signed with Bombardier Aerospace on May 31, 2007. The fleet of Bombardiers has replaced the airline’s short haul fleet of ATR aircraft. The Bombardiers operating for Croatia Airlines have a capacity of 76 seats and is organized in an all economy class layout. 9A-CQD which recently arrived is the last Bombardier to be delivered this year to Croatia Airlines. The other 2 orders will be delivered during 2011. The airline now operates 13 aircraft (which includes the leased Adria Airways CRJ200 for the summer). Together with the 2 Bombardier orders it has another 4 Airbus A319s on order.

HECS part II

Aerodynamic Comparison of Hyper-Elliptic Cambered Span (HECS) Wings with Conventional Configurations

Spirit of Verticality

Last week I was pottering into Ardmore to do some Tecnaming when I found the Sikorsky S-76A Spirit ZK-ISJ of the Northland Emergency Services Trust parked outside the Hawker Pacific hangar.

This particular S-76 has a long and distinguished history. Built by United Technologies Corp., Stratford, CT it was initially registered N4237S before transferring to the Royal Jordanian Air Force in 1979 as ABLE-1. UTC got it back in 1987 and restored it as '37S before a sale to PMA Services Pty.Ltd., Revesby, NSW where it became VH-JQI on 8Nov1989. January 1990 saw it back in the USA with Aircraft Holdings Inc., Miami, FL as N4237S once again until a transfer to Mexico as XB-RXV with Aviorrenta SA de CV in July 1991. This didn't last long as August the same year saw it back as '37S with Air Siesta Inc., McAllen, TX.
Around this time Australian entrepreneur Dick Smith was looking for a helicopter to carry out his first-around-the-world in a westerly direction adventure and he picked up this S-76 for the event, registering it as VH-SHW on 16Oct1991 and named it World Explorer. Dick & Pip Smith successfully carried out the global flight. By August 1995 the registration had been changed to VH-CFH under the ownership of Dick Smith Adventure Pty.Ltd. The Order of St John Auckland Regional Trust Board, Whanagrei bought the helicopter into New Zealand in August 1997 and it became ZK-ISJ on 3Sep1997. I recollect there was some dispute about the wisdom of this purchase at that time, as by then this S-76 was a bit non-standard.
Despite it's age it is still a very impressive machine, and I watched in awe as some complicated manouvering took place presumably to try and demonstrate some fault. If you look closely, you can see that the undercarriage locking pins are still in place during this exercise.

After a shut down and some further discussion, ISJ was preflighted, restarted and taxiied away to depart. (It still seems strange to me to see a helicopter taxiing, but that's what she does). What an amazing machine.

Universiade hope

Will the 2009 Universiade mascot “Srba” bring Jat much needed passengers?
In 3 days the world’s largest sporting event of the year and the second largest sporting event after the Summer Olympics will begin in Belgrade. The 2009 Summer Universiade Games will bring 10.000 athletes to Belgrade and over 15.000 visitors. The event which Belgrade has been preparing for the last 4 years will be officially open in the evening hours of July 1. Jat Airways is the official carrier of the 25th edition of this sporting event. It hopes that the sharp rise in passengers resulting from Universiade could finally end its continual passenger decline. The rise in passengers is expected to have occurred in the last 2 weeks of June. The second wave of passengers will occur in mid July when Universiade ends which is good news for the airline’s July results. The rise in passenger flow has certainly been felt by other airlines operating to Belgrade with most sending larger aircraft to operate during the week including Russia’s Aeroflot which sent its 4 engined Ilyushin Il-96.

Jat will be the official carrier of Universiade for a second time, after it held the same title in 1987 for the Universiade in Zagreb. Over the years Jat has also been the official carrier of the Winter Olympic Games in Sarajevo in 1984. Universiade will be the largest sporting event ever to be held in Belgrade and Serbia.

The start to Jat’s pre-Universiade passenger rise has not gone too well. On Thursday the Serbian carrier’s B737-400 had problems with starting up one of its engines and therefore the pilots decided to wait for spare parts to arrive from Belgrade to Sharm-el-Sheikh (Egypt). The aircraft finally departed 24 hours later on Friday evening. The trouble continued when one of Jat’s B737-300s operating from Tripoli to Belgrade had to land in Malta after a passenger felt very ill. As a result of these two aircraft being extremely late on their arrival into Belgrade, many of Jat’s flights have been delayed and some even cancelled. The schedule is expected to be normalised by Sunday morning.

Jat has also announced that it will bring forward its services to Dubrovnik. The flights which will resume to the Croatian coast town after more than 18 years will be Jat’s second in Croatia after Pula and will begin on July 2, rather than July 6 as previously announced.

Auster Agricolas

Inspired by Flyernzl I looked out some of my old Auster Agricola photos. Most of these were taken by Murray Kirkus and I will leave Flyernzl to post these. He also has posted a history of the Agricola at http://forum.keypublishing.co.uk/showthread.php?t=77959 I often used to see Auster Agricolas from Associated Farmers Aerial Topdresssing in Martinborough flying over Wellington to operate off various topdressing strips around the city in the late 1960's. This photo shows ZK-BXO operating off a strip at Makara. ZK-BXO c/n AIRP - 680 was built up from the remains of ZK-BMN and other crashed Agricola's by Temple Martin at Hastings (Airepair) and was registered on 15 October 1966. It was withdrawn from use in the early 1970's and then restored to airworthy status in the early 1980's after which it was operated by John Stephenson of Whitianga but not used as a topdresser. It was shipped to the UK in 2002 where it is still current and owned by Cliff Parker as G-CBOA.
And this photo shows ZK-CCU operating off a very steep strip at Baring Head on the far side of Wellington Heads. ZK-CCU was built up from parts of ZK-BMK, ZK-BML and ZK-CCV and was registered to Associated Farmers Aerial Topdressing on 11 June 1965. It crashed on take off at Ohariu Valley on 13 February 1977. The colours of both the above aircraft were the same as I recall - dark green lower fuselage, yellow (?) upper fuselage and dayglo wingtips, tailplane tips and rudder tip.
There were a total of 10 Agricolas on the New Zealand register ZK-BMI (which flew in the UK but never came to New Zealand), ZK-BMJ, ZK-BMK, ZK-BML, ZK-BMM, ZK-BMN, ZK-CCV and ZK-DEU plus the above 2 aircraft. We now have photos of all of the except ZK-BMM - does anyone out there have a photo of it?

Ready for takeoff

Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport terminal
Despite the passenger decrease at Adria Airways, Slovenia’s largest airport, Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport has recently announced that its major development plan has begun. Recently, the CEO of the airport, Zmago Skobir said that this renovation is overdue. “it’s been 15 years since the airport’s tarmacs were last improved. However, what is most important is that the airport will be able to offer new spaces for aircraft parking, which are now lacking. If we want to build a new passenger terminal, we will first need enough space to accommodate all the aircraft. The investment is worth 15 million Euros”, Skobir said. Answering to the questions from the media, Skobit said that large sums of money have been invested over the years in the upgrade of the airport’s facilties. “During the 2002 - 2008 period, we invested 86 million Euros in the upgrading of the airport’s infrastructure. We still have ambitious plans, but we have had to postpone some investments because of the economic crisis. Construction of a new passenger terminal was supposed to start this year, but that won’t happen. Our investment plans also include a new cargo terminal and a parking garage. We are confident that we can pull off these investments, worth around 120 million Euros, in the next six to seven years”.

Ljubljana Airport has also suffered a passenger and financial decrease due to the crisis. Looking at the figures for the first three months of 2009, it can be seen that the number of passengers is down by 23%, while the number of takeoffs and landings decreased by 16%. Cargo traffic, however, has taken the most serious battering, with throughput 30% lower than in the same period last year. Recently low cost Spanish airline Click Air and the Finnish national carrier Finnair ceased services to Ljubljana.

The airport’s CEO also says that he hopes there will be a railway link between the airport and the city. “I think the railway link could be built in eight to ten years. In any case, the sooner, the better. Slovenia is a small market and logistics companies usually choose bigger over smaller markets as their base. Zagreb, for example, is quickly catching up, so we must act now”, Skobir said.

Question time # 57

An easy one to see us through until Tuesday (Blue bus away until then).

So:- what is it ?

What is its NZ civil registration.

What Japanese tail markings did it carry in about March of 2004 ?

Recession bites

Airbus A319 - soon in the Adria Airways livery
The CEO of Adria Airways, Tadej Tufek, has recently told a Slovenian newspaper that this year will be one of the most difficult in the airline’s history. Although he hopes for a better outlook he says the airline will not be opening any new services during the 2009/10 winter period. The airline’s CEO said that he is reasonably happy with the 2008 result. “The Slovenian EU presidency in the first half of 2008 was an important factor for the passenger increase. This means that we have had 15% less passengers and revenue in the first quarter of this year compared to the previous one. We are trying to increase the number of passengers and the frequency of our flights to and from the Western Balkans to make up for what we have lost on services to and from Munich, Frankfurt, Zurich and Brussels”, Tufek said. Asked about what measures Adria Airways has taken to fight the crisis, Tufek said, “The most important process is fleet optimisation. We have introduced the fourth 86-seat Canadair CRJ900 which allows us to adapt to market situations more efficiently. We also fly 160-seat Airbuses, but it is hard to fill the seats on these outside of the charter season, which only lasts four months a year. We have therefore leased one of our Airbuses to a Libyan airline (Afriqiyah Airways). Two of the remaining three will be sold during this fall and two smaller A319 Airbuses will be introduced. I think that this way we will be able to utilize our capacities to a greater extent. Long-term leasing is the best way to finance the fleet change, because prices today are 40% lower than a year ago. We have also cut our operating costs by 11% in 2008, focusing on suppliers’ costs. We have postponed investments that are not necessary at this time. However, the introduction of five new planes in our fleet mandates the employment of new resources, so we are quite constrained when it comes to lowering labour costs”.

The first man of Slovenia’s national carrier has also said that he is happy with the cooperation with Ljubljana Airport and that the airline will not introduce any new services during the 2009/10 winter season which begins in late October. In 2008, Adria increased the number of transported passengers by 27%, largely because of the Slovenian EU presidency. In the first quarter of this year, Adria registered a 14% decline in passenger numbers. However, because of Slovenia’s EU presidency in the first 6 months of last year, Tufek believes that 2009 should be compared to 2007. When compared to 2007, Adria has recorded more passengers in the first 4 months this year.

It should be noted that almost all airlines in Europe have been affected by the global financial crisis. The only airline which is reporting passenger and profit growth in 2009 is Turkish Airlines. The Turkish national carrier announced yesterday that the airline has ordered 7 Airbus A330s and 7 Boeing B777s. Another airline reporting relatively good passenger figures is Swiss International Airlines. On the other hand, Malev Hungarian Airlines will end services to Ljubljana and Podgorica starting from the 2009/10 winter season due to cost cutting which will see off unprofitable lines.

Going, going,going..........ZK-SEY gone West

Yet another of our Cessna 207's has jumped the "Ditch".
ZK-SEY , c/n 00661 , the Air Safari's Cessna T207A Turbo Stationair cleared Kerikeri on Tuesday for Norfolk Island. On Thursday it completed the hop across via Lord Howe Island.
It has been Tekapo based since its arrival in NZ in July of 1985.
I noted it for sale on Trade Me back in August of 2005.
Top pic at Tekapo 20-01-2006 and lower pic also at Tekapo but on 26-09-07.

What ever happened to ? # 1.

This is the first of a series enquiring about airframes that have been spotted around the country.

This Lake LA4-200 c/n 583 and ex DQ-FDO was noted at New Plymouth in May of 1985; I believe for Neil O'Connor (sp ?).

It had obviously arrived some time prior to this date in a container.

I know that this airframe started life as N65644 and then became VH-ETB, VP-PBA, F-OCXH, VP-PBA, H4-AAD and then DQ-FDO, which was cancelled on 20-07-1984.

Next sighting was at Nelson in July of 1994.

The Registration ZK-SUB was reserved in 1994 - possibly for this aircraft.

What has happened to this airframe since 1994 ?

New look for 23-year olds

Jat's Boeing B737-300s get interior change
In late May, Jat began refurbishing its Boeing B737-300 fleet, which are beeing renewed for the first time since 1994, when the airline received a new visual identity. Although the actual seats in the aircraft have been replaced now for the first time since the aircraft arrived. The refurbishment was carried out on the aircraft registered YU-ANJ, which received new look seats, new lighting and new carpets. The outside of the aircraft also received fresh paint while the engines were also changed. By the end of August a further 5 aircraft will receive the new interior. The new seats are of the same configuration as the previous ones although they have been revamped with leather from the United States. The business class section has also received a new look. The refurbishment of YU-ANJ amounted to 100.000 Euros.

Jat's revamped economy class
Jat was the launch customer of the Boeing B737-300 series aircraft in Europe. Its first B737-300, still operating for the airline, entered service on August 15, 1985 (registered YU-ANF). The majority of Jat’s B737s arrived during 1988. According to Jat’s technical division, the aircraft can serve for a further 5 years before they become too expensive to maintain and operate. Despite being with Jat since they were produced, many of the airline’s Boeings have operated around the world. YU-ANJ, which has been the first to receive the revamped cabins is the most memorable. It was the first aircraft to receive the “flying dots” livery in 2003 under the new name Jat Airways. YU-ANJ also memorably flew within Australia during 1989. This was the year when Australia’s pilots strike took place. The Boeing was leased in Jat colours with Jat’s cabin and flight crew to Australian Airlines and Ansett Airlines. Neither of the two exists anymore.

Christchurch. A moment in time today 25-06-2009

A quick whizz around Christchurch's western grass area at about 10am this morning found the Cessna 402B ZK-MAP2 , c/n 402B-1056 , outside the Aero Club. This is listed to the ACK Gilbert No1 Trust c/o Air Logistics of Stoke.
Helipro's Robinson R22 Beta ZK-HGQ4 , c/n 1438 , is alive and well & being preflighted. (mentioned in the comments section of the ZK-IMO post further below).
Trying to escaped from between the Helipro and the Heli Maintenance hangars before I could get a photo was the Robinson R44 Clipper ZK-HDD4 , c/n 0299 , listed to Skyline Trust of Nelson and operated by Ridge Air out of Omaka.
On the tie downs alongside the Aero Club hangar was the Piper PA23-250C Aztec ZK-DGT , c/n 27-3427 , of Dairy Tech International of Tauranga.
Cessna 172N Skyhawk ZK-EJQ , c/n 68793 , of the Canterbury Aero Club with the old and the new control towers in the background.
And who said size does not matter ?

Air National's BAe 146

Air National listed the British Aerospace BAe 146 Series 200 c/n E2130 as ZK-ECO/3 in January. Soon after this date it appeared, firmly lodged in the firm's hangar at Auckland International.
Apart from a brief tow-out, it has seemingly remained there as a hangar queen ever since.
Am I missing something here? Is it incredibly active during the hours of darkness and returns for a polish each day? Or is there some more serious work being carried out?
I am aware that there was some reworking of the radio systems that was required by CAA, but surely that would not take this long.

Love is in the air

Croatia and Montenegro sign new air agreement
Representatives of the Croatian and Montenegrin governments have signed a new air agreement between the two countries which should regulate air traffic. The agreement will allow Montenegro Airlines to introduce a 2 weekly service from Podgorica to Zagreb from this fall. Previously, air traffic between the two countries was regulated based on old and out of date documents. Croatia Airlines already serves Podgorica from Zagreb three times per week and will continue to do so during the 2009/10 winter season, without decreasing existing frequencies. The new agreement will allow airlines from Montenegro and Croatia to receive a license to operate to the other country with more ease.

Meanwhile, another Croatia Airlines Dash 8 Q400 aircraft has been involved in an incident, this time however the incident was minor and through no fault of any mechanical failure. The aircraft was hit by a bird which flew in the propeller of the aircraft as it was landing at Split Airport from Vienna. No one was aware of the strike until ground handling staff noticed blood on the wing of the aircraft and found the birds’ remains in the engine. The aircraft’s next flight, to Zagreb, was cancelled as a result. Despite the fact that there was absolutely no danger to passengers, some Croatian tabloid newspapers did not hold back in dramatizing the event. The aircraft in question is the brand new Dash 8 called Istra which began operating for the airline less than a week ago.

Argosy video clip

I stumbled over this interesting clip on the Argosy the other day. Thought you might like to have a look for yourselves.

The Argosy photo above is ZK-SAE1 C/N 6802 , as seen alongside the highway between Woodbourne Airfield and Renwick on 15-07-2008. The blurb below is attached to the lower fuselage beneath the cockpit (starboard side).

Robinson R22 Beta ZK-IMO. Cancelled

Robinson R22 Beta ZK-IMO , c/n 1010, was built in 1989 as N429DB and was listed to Sunrise Helicopters Inc of Stockton, California. It came to NZ and was assembled by Wing & Rotor at Ardmore to become ZK-HCR on 19-09-1990 for Hauraki Helicopters of Drury.
Ownership moved to B Dillon & C Thompson at Pahiatua on 02-09-2002.
It was damaged at Turangi on landing on 07-03-07 and cancelled on 05-07-07.
About mid August 2008 I came across an all white unmarked airframe at Heli-Maintenance at Christchurch. On the 26th the letters IMO were being attached - as in the above pic.
Three days later the tail boom had been added (pic below) and it came onto the register on 16-09-2008 with M S Hall of Wellington.
Less than a month later (13-10-08) it was listed to Astral Helicopters of Rotorua, however on December the 18th it suffered a dynamic rollover at Rotorua in the hands of a first solo pupil during a hovering exercise.
Its registration was cancelled (again) on June 12th 2009.

Fleet renewal gains momentum

Jat's ATR72
Jat Airways’ fleet renewal which is scheduled to begin in early 2010 is gaining momentum as the company’s management decides on some firm dates for making the decision of which aircraft manufacturers will be chosen. It has been so far decided that the company will choose three different types of aircraft for its fleet. There will be aircraft with 75 seats, with 90 seats and aircraft with over 125 seats that will be chosen. At the recent Paris Air Show Jat’s team has held talks with 8 different aircraft manufacturers. It has been decided that on July 9, 2009 the company should decide which type of aircraft it will peruse to lease or buy. On that day it will also be decided what will happen with Jat’s current fleet of 1 Boeing B737-200, 10 Boeing B737-300s, 1 Boeing B737-400 and 5 ATR72s.

The airline already has 3 scenarios of what should happen with their existing fleet. By July 9, the Serbian national carrier should have a clearer picture if it will go ahead with the takeover of MAT Macedonian Airlines. If the takeover is finalised, some of Jats B737s will be deployed to Macedonia in 2010. The other plan is to lease the B737s to Air Ivoire, the national carrier of the Ivory Coast while the third scenario is to sell 7 B737s. For example, by selling 7 aircraft of this type, whose age amounts to 23 years, the airline could receive enough money to lease aircraft for the next 2 to 3 years. Jat will also pursue to upgrade its ATR72s however whether it will do so depends on upcoming talks with Airbus regarding the purchase of 8 Airbus A319s.

The company’s management has announced that with the aircraft which have a capacity of 70 seats the airline will carry out regional services. The airline would use aircraft with a capacity of 90 seats to destinations in Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Greece and Turkey while larger aircraft with over 125 seats would be used to London, Paris, Zurich, Frankfurt, Moscow and Abu Dhabi. This way the airline would significantly improve its cabin occupancy index. An airline spokesperson said that the carrier finds it difficult to fill aircraft on services which should be served with aircraft with a capacity of 90 seats.

Today Jat’s new CEO should be named.

Question time # 56 ................RESOLVED

Whilst passing through Wellington Airport recently I took this photograph.

Yes it is a photograph of a photograph which hangs on the wall opposite the small cafe near the start of the finger that leads out to the main ANZ gates.

Now - we all know that the aircraft in the right foreground (G-ABCF) is the Southern Cross Junior, what I would like to ask is:-

What flight is this aircraft probably better known for in NZ circles ?

In case of a deluge of correct answers:-

What was the name of the dog ?

To the right of the hangar is what I believe to be an anemometer mast. What is its claim to fame ? !

[Rodney - Do you recognise your club rooms in the background ?]

No improvement at Croatian airports

Split Airport
After some relief in April, airports in Croatia have recorded a big decline in passengers in May. Except for Zadar and Osijek, no other airport in Croatia reported growth in passenger figures when compared to May 2008. The most affected airport was Pula, which has until now had mostly positive results.

Croatia’s largest airport, Zagreb, reported a 6.7% decline in passengers, from 195.817 in May 2008 to 182.342 in May 2009. The airport saw a sharp decline in transit passenger which fell by a hefty 78%. Split Airport reported even worse numbers. Passengers declined by 11.6% and transit passengers waned by 23%. In May 2009, a total of 108.351 passengers passed through the airport, compared to 122.567 last year. Dubrovnik Airport continued its negative run of results with passengers declining by 5.3%. However, the airport did report an increase in transit passengers by 11.45%. Pula Airport recorded the largest decline in passengers. Its results worsened by a total of 17.9%. This is despite the fact that the number of aircraft operations increased by nearly 6% when compared to May 2008. A similar trend can be seen in Rijeka where passengers decreased by 11.65% while aircraft operations increased by nearly 7%. A total of 10.885 passengers used Rijeka Airport in May 2009, compared to 12.320 during the same period last year.

As reported earlier, Zadar continued its impressive results with a passenger increase of nearly 17%. Even more impressive is the fact that transit passengers at Zadar increased by 136.8%. The only other Croatian airport that managed to report growth in May 2009 is Osijek, with an increase of 1%. Most of the results have been affected by the global financial crisis. There is fear that the tourism industry in Croatia may be heavily impacted by the crisis. Interestingly, Croatia Airlines seems not to be affected as much as its hub and secondary airports.

Passenger figures at Croatian airports:
· January
· February
· March
· April

Adria’s figures decline

Bad news from Adria
With a delay of over a month, Adria Airways has finally published its traffic statistics for the month of April. The Slovenian national carrier reported the largest drop in passengers since the beginning of this year. Its passenger numbers declined by 21.3% compared to the same month last year. With this statistics, Adria also performed the worst out of the other two largest Ex-Yu carriers – Croatia Airlines and Jat Airways. Adria’s traffic was down 17% while capacity was cut by 13% compared to April 2008. In April, many European carriers saw a sharp decline in their cabin occupancy index. Adria had an average 58.9% load factor (a decrease of 1% compared to last year). Overall, in the first 4 months of the year Adria has seen a passenger decrease of 17.1%.

The European airline performing worst in the first four months was Icelandiar which saw passengers decrease by more than 22%. TAROM Romanian Airlines reports the worst cabin occupancy index of only 48% followed closely by Ukraine International Airlines and Croatia Airlines. The airline performing the best so far this year, in Europe in terms of passengers, is Turkish Airlines. Spain’s Iberia is reporting the best load factor in Europe of over 78%.

Current data shows that May will be even worse for European carriers while in June airlines should expect to see the worst figures so far this year.

Mat Airways?

Still grounded
MAT Macedonian Airlines is still grounded by the Macedonian Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and is unable to use its only aircraft due to safety concerns that the CAA has expressed. One of MAT’s owners, Živko Grueski, recently told the Macedonian press that the CAA has set out to destroy the national carrier of Macedonia and that this grand scheme has been in the making for the past few years. Gruevski said that the head of the Civil Aviation Agency, Zoran Krstevski “pursues a mega project to destroy MAT”. During a press conference in Skopje, Gruevski said this project kicked off long before the CAA ordered an overhaul of MAT's Boeing B737-500 aircraft. He further says that the CAA has made moves to discredit the company's reputation. Gruevski told reporters that the authorities are pressing ahead with the theory that Macedonia doesn't need a national carrier and that other companies should be given priority to carry out flights. Such a theory, according to Gruevski, aims to push the country back into the early 1990s when Macedonia’s aviation sector was in chaos.

Meanwhile, Jat Airways, Serbia’s national carrier has proposed for MAT Macedonian Airlines to change its name and reregister as a new airline called Mat Airways. The name change would also finally settle a dispute between Greece and Macedonia in terms of air service. Greek authorities have banned MAT from flying to Greek airports due to the fact that the airline holds in its name the words “Macedonian Airlines”, which, according to Greece, displays territorial advances. The Greek government has been pushing Eurocontrol to pressure MAT into changing its name. Gruevski did not directly comment about the name change and a future with Jat, saying only that the management’s top priority is to rescue the existing company.

The Macedonian CAA has grounded MAT’s Boeing B737-500 for safety reasons until further notice although the aircraft seems to have been safe enough to transport Antonio Milošoski, Macedonia’s minister for foreign affairs to Corfu yesterday. Despite airlines from Macedonia being banned from Greece, the flight received special permission to land in Corfu as Milošoski was attending a special meeting by the OSCE.

Coming or Going ? Gone South ZK-EEU

At the Pudding Hill fly in on 25-01-1981 there were two of a kind.
Pitts Special S-1's ZK-EES , c/n AACA/28/1 , of Max Clear and ZK-EEU , c/n AACA/24/1 of Keith Trillo.
As a matter of interest:- to my knowledge there has been no ZK-EET.
I caught up with EEU again at New Plymouth on New Years Day 1986.
I assume the shoes are part of the ritual.
Keith has just kindly advised me that ZK-EEU has been sold to Ryan Southam and Andrew Love and the aircraft has been transported to Mandeville for restoration after being dormant for a number of years.
Ryan is chief pilot at Croydon and Andrew has operated Pitts in Queenstown.

More & more Sirocco's

I've managed to extract a couple more photos from the heap.
Above is ZK-ECW as spied at Manapouri on 22-01-1984.
And below is ZK-EDQ at Nelson on 27-12-1979 snuggled between Tigers ZK-BRM and ZK-BFS.

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