Cargo carrier Asia Pacific Airlines grounded by FAA

Photo: Asia Pacific Airlines

Cargo airline Asia Pacific Airlines has been grounded by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) because it was “unable to demonstrate that its pilots were properly trained” said the US government agency.

In a statement, the FAA confirmed it issued an Emergency Order of Suspension on February 1 to the operating authority of Aero Micronesia Inc., doing business as Asia Pacific Airlines.

The suspension order was issued “after the company failed to produce records showing that the two individuals who provide proficiency checks for company pilots were properly trained and qualified for the past two years”, according to the FAA.

“Under the regulations, any flight check provided by these two individuals is invalid, meaning that none of the company’s pilots are currently qualified to fly.”

The suspension order was not a surprise to the airline after it had been warned it was not compliant with regulations last year.

“The FAA notified Asia Pacific in December that it was in apparent non-compliance with the regulations and urged the carrier to suspend operations until the matter was resolved. The Guam-based airline continued to operate,” noted the FAA.

Asia Pacific Airlines said on February 6 it had challenged the suspension and is currently in talks with the FAA to resolve issues.

“The pilots referenced in the FAA statement were fully qualified to provide the crew training at the time the suspension was issued,” said Adam Ferguson, president at Asia Pacific Airlines. 

“Moreover the records FAA was requiring the airline to provide were not required to be retained by the airline under the FAA’s own rules as they were retained by the employer of those pilots. 

 “Asia Pacific has today challenged the suspension in a filing with the National Transportation Safety Board as it is in full compliance with all training record requirements and is working to return to service as quickly as possible.”

Asia Pacific Airlines is an FAA part-121 supplemental all-cargo carrier. Headquartered in US island territory Guam it operates across the Asia Pacific region.

The carrier operates a fleet of 757-200Fs, but its website does not specify how many.

Asia Pacific Airlines is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tan Holdings Corporation.

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Rebecca Jeffrey

Rebecca Jeffrey
New to aviation journalism, I joined Air Cargo News in late 2021 as deputy editor. I previously worked for Mercator Media’s six maritime sector magazines as a reporter, heading up news for Port Strategy. Prior to this, I was editor for Recruitment International (now TALiNT International). Contact me on: [email protected]