NCA hit with business improvement order, while operations continue to restart

20 / 07 / 2018

Nippon Cargo Airlines (NCA) has been hit with a business improvement order from Japan’s ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLITT), while a second aircraft has now restarted services.

NYK Group – NCA’s parent - said in a stock exchange announcement that the airline received the order to improve operations following a government investigation into safety record maintenance due several incidents being incorrectly reported.

In light of the investigation, NCA took the decision to ground its entire freighter fleet, although flights are starting to get back underway.

The business improvement order covers seven areas including awareness of safety consciousness and compliance training; appropriate formulation of the safety management system; appropriate reporting of maintenance records; and appropriate maintenance related of the aircraft structure.

In the statement, the NYK Group also acknowledged that there has been “inappropriate operations of aircraft maintenance” and deliberate falsification of records and actions to disguise maintenance records.

Other areas covered by the order include: appropriate action taken in relation to damage as a result of aircraft accidents; confirmation of the safety aircraft and the suspension of maintenance operations for the aircraft structure.

According to local reports, the ministry will also retract an airworthiness certificate that exempted NCA for annual inspections.

NCA took the decision in June to ground all 11 of its B747 freighters, although it was still able to offer capacity through partner flights, extra charter flights and through existing lease deals.

One of its B747-800Fs began flying on July 4 (JA18KZ), while a B747-400F  (JA05KZ) has restarted operations over the last couple of days.

“NCA is utilising a third party company to assist in evaluating the root causes of our failure and examine preventive measures immediately,” the airline said.

“All aircraft currently operating have been confirmed to be airworthy and safe. The remainder of the fleet is undergoing the same inspection, and we will inform the schedule updates as soon as it is decided.

“We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience and worries that we caused our customers. We will do our utmost effort to conclude the safety checks for resuming the operation as quick as possible."

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