De Havilland entitled to terminate SpiceJet Dash 8 order: UK judge

From Flight Global – link to source story

By David Kaminski-Morrow | 7 March 2021

Turboprop manufacturer De Havilland Aircraft of Canada was entitled to terminate a Dash 8-400 purchase agreement with Indian carrier SpiceJet after the airline stopped making payments and taking delivery of aircraft, a judge has ruled.

SpiceJet originally ordered 25 of the type from Bombardier – part of a September 2017 agreement for up to 50, the largest single deal for the aircraft type – before the airframer sold the programme to Longview Aviation Capital, which placed it under the De Havilland brand.

De Havilland has pursued a $42.95 million claim against SpiceJet after the airline took, and paid for, the first five aircraft but failed to take delivery of the next three or make pre-delivery payments on either these or 12 subsequent ones.

The airframer served notice terminating the deliveries of all outstanding aircraft and cancelling the purchase agreement.

SpiceJet Q400-c-Bombardier
Source: Bombardier

SpiceJet’s deal for 25 firm and 25 optioned Dash 8-400s was valued at $1.7 billion

SpiceJet had argued that its obligations to make pre-delivery payments on specific aircraft were suspended by agreement between the two sides, under an April 2019 change order.

But De Havilland countered that the change order did not suspend this obligation. It said that only the scheduled delivery months were suspended. SpiceJet claimed the suspension of scheduled delivery months automatically suspended payment liability because the two were linked.

In a 23 February ruling from the High Court in London, the judge says he is “persuaded” by De Havilland’s argument.

“I am satisfied that, although there was an agreement for variation of the [scheduled delivery months], there was no agreement to excuse payment of the invoices in respect of those [pre-delivery payments] which had already accrued due,” he says.

SpiceJet had also tried to defend its failure to take delivery of its sixth, seventh and eighth aircraft by claiming that De Havilland had breached an obligation to provide assistance in arranging finance.

But the judge rejects SpiceJet’s claim that such assistance amounted to working with the airline and its financiers to procure finance, and that any assistance – given that De Havilland had no responsibility to incur expense itself – would have been “very limited”.

De Havilland was “entitled” to terminate deliveries of the sixth, seventh and eighth aircraft, says the ruling, and similarly entitled to terminate all remaining aircraft encompassed by the order.

PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Canada Announce MOU to Develop Dash 8 P-4 Special Mission Aircraft

ST. JOHN’S, NL and TORONTO, ON, Feb. 25, 2021 /CNW/ – PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (“De Havilland Canada”) today announced the establishment of a Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) to jointly pursue the development of a fully missionized Dash 8-400 aircraft, called the “Dash 8 P-4” for maritime patrol (“MPA”), intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (“ISR”), as well as other applications. Modified with auxiliary fuel tanks, the Dash 8 P-4 will have superior range, endurance, and time-on-station.

“PAL Aerospace is thrilled to work with De Havilland Canada on this important initiative for our company,” said Jake Trainor, CEO of PAL Aerospace. “The considerable cabin space, payload capacity, best-in-class airspeed profile and advantageous operating economics of the Dash 8-400 platform, combined with De Havilland Canada’s proud 92-year history of innovation and leadership in aircraft design and manufacturing, provide an ideal foundation from which to launch the Dash 8 P-4 program.”

PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Canada believe there exists a significant global market for missionized turboprop aircraft, especially in the MPA and ISR market. The unique capabilities the Dash 8-400 platform, in combination with PAL Aerospace’s demonstrated global capability as a full-service provider of specialized aircraft modification, technology integration and special missions operation, delivers a unique value proposition for clients looking for leading edge MPA and ISR programs. PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Canada are currently working together to offer a comprehensive Dash 8 P-4 MPA solution for the Royal Malaysian Air Force’s ongoing maritime surveillance aircraft procurement.

“PAL Aerospace’s unmatched credentials in the design and modification of MPA and ISR aircraft, their understanding of the Dash 8 as a current operator of the platform, and their more than 40 years’ experience in special missions operations are unique in Canada and around the world,” said David Curtis, Executive Chairman of Longview Aviation Capital, De Havilland Canada’s parent company. “We are excited to collaborate on this initiative and believe strongly that the Dash 8 P-4 will prove to be a market leading MPA and ISR solution while supporting highly skilled employment and the development of critical intellectual property here in Canada.” 

“The Dash 8-400 aircraft’s turboprop efficiency and low-impact on the environment combined with its high productivity and jet-like performance have proven to be an ideal combination for many of our airline customers around the world,” said Philippe Poutissou, Vice President, Sales and Marketing at De Havilland Canada. “These attributes also make the Dash 8 P-4 a versatile and formidable special mission aircraft.” 

This new collaboration affirms commitments from both PAL Aerospace and De Havilland Canada to continue the development of multi-role, MPA and ISR configurations for the Dash 8-400 aircraft. The two companies will continue to cooperate in business development and marketing activities while fortifying long-term support, developing training capacity and combining resources to ensure superior aircraft performance.

An image of a Dash 8 P-4 aircraft is available at: https://dehavilland.com/en/media

About PAL Aerospace:

A proud member of the Exchange Income Corporation family of companies, PAL Aerospace is a Canadian-owned and operated global aerospace and defence company. With a focus on intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, in-service support solutions and aircraft engineering and modification, PAL Aerospace is internationally recognized by governments, militaries, and industry for on time/on budget delivery and high reliability rates. PAL Aerospace offers a single point of accountability for its programs and takes pride in being the trusted choice for clients worldwide.

For more information, please visit www.palaerospace.com

About Exchange Income Corporation:

Exchange Income Corporation is a diversified acquisition-oriented company, focused in two sectors: aerospace & aviation services and equipment, and manufacturing. The Corporation uses a disciplined acquisition strategy to identify already profitable, well-established companies that have strong management teams, generate steady cash flow, operate in niche markets, and have opportunities for organic growth.

For more information, please visit www.exchangeincomecorp.ca

About De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited:

De Havilland Canada’s portfolio includes support to the worldwide fleet of Dash 8-100/200/300/400 aircraft, as well as production and sales of the Dash 8-400 aircraft. With its low carbon footprint and operating costs, industry-leading passenger experience and jet-like performance, the Dash 8-400 aircraft, which seats up to 90 passengers, is the environmentally responsible choice for operators seeking optimal performance on regional routes. De Havilland Canada is a part of the Longview Aviation Capital family of companies. 

For more information, please visit www.dehavilland.com

About Longview Aviation Capital Corp.:

Longview Aviation Capital Corp. was established in 2016 to manage a portfolio of long-term investments in the Canadian aerospace industry, including De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited; Viking Air Ltd.; Pacific Sky Aviation Ltd; Longview Aviation Asset Management Inc; and Longview Aviation Services.

Longview, through its subsidiaries, holds the Type Certificates for the entire product line of the original De Havilland aircraft company including the Twin Otter program and the DHC-1 through DHC-8- 400 series, as well as the CANADAIR CL-215, CL-215T, and CL-415 aerial firefighting aircraft, and the Shorts Skyvan, 360, 330 and Sherpa family of aircraft. Longview operates manufacturing and aircraft service support in locations across Canada, including Victoria, Calgary and Toronto.

For more information, please visit www.lvav.ca

De Havilland Canada Delivers Dash 8-400 Aircraft to Biman Bangladesh Airlines

Dash 8-400 aircraft continue to increase the overall network efficiency of the national airline’s fleet

TORONTO, Nov. 23, 2020 /CNW/ – De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (“De Havilland Canada”) has delivered the first of three new Dash 8-400 aircraft ordered by Biman Bangladesh Airlines Ltd. (“Biman”) and the aircraft is enroute to Bangladesh. The aircraft were ordered under a purchase agreement that was signed between Biman and the Canadian Commercial Corporation (“CCC”) in 2018 and will join two Dash 8-400 aircraft that were introduced to Biman’s fleet in 2015 and 2018.

Image of Dash 8-400 aircraft in the livery of Biman Bangladesh Airlines. (CNW Group/De Havilland Aircraft of Canada)

“Our Dash 8-400 aircraft’s excellent economics and passenger environment have allowed us to offer high-frequency services within Bangladesh and neighboring countries over the last five years and we look forward to the increased operational flexibility that our new aircraft will provide for our fleet,” said Md Mokabbir Hossain, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Biman. “The combination of our Dash 8-400 turboprops and our narrow body jets improves our overall network efficiency, connectivity and, ultimately, our system profitability. Furthermore, during the ongoing pandemic, we have found that the role of our Dash 8-400 aircraft is even more important as we see gradual traffic recovery after the lockdown.

“In today’s environment, we also appreciate the Dash 8-400 aircraft’s excellent cabin air system which includes HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filtration to keep our passengers and crew safe,” added Mr. Hossain.

“The Dash 8-400 aircraft’s turboprop economics and jet-like performance have proven to be an ideal match for Biman’s network of short, domestic routes and longer, international routes,” said Rob Baseggio, Regional Vice President, Sales, De Havilland Canada. “In addition, the Dash 8-400 aircraft’s greater passenger and cargo capacity set it apart from the competition and provide Biman with the opportunity to optimize its network operations.”

“Canada’s strong bilateral ties with Bangladesh through trade and investment, developmental cooperation, and people-to-people links are focused on improving the lives of Bangladeshi people. CCC is therefore exceedingly proud that the successful delivery of the first new Dash 8-400 aircraft to Biman Bangladesh Airlines will provide increased access to domestic and international destinations and support economic growth in the country,” said Ernie Briard, Interim President and Chief Executive Officer, CCC.

Worldwide, more than 155 airlines, leasing companies and other organizations have ordered almost 1,300 Dash 8 Series aircraft. The fleet of Dash 8 Series aircraft across the globe supports diverse airline operating models as low cost carriers, network connectors and point-to-point regional aircraft. They are also deployed in hybrid passenger-cargo operations and all-cargo operations, and many provide an ideal platform for special mission operations  including fire-fighting, search and rescue, medical evacuation and coastal surveillance.

De Havilland Canada continues to focus on delivering exceptional support to operators of Dash 8 Series aircraft and is currently assisting customers who need help in updating their fleet utilization and network recovery models during the pandemic.

About Biman
Biman Bangladesh Airlines is the National Flag Carrier airline of Bangladesh. Its main hub is at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in Dhaka and it also operates flights from two other hubs at Shah Amanat International Airport in Chittagong and Osmani International Airport in Sylhet. The airline provides international passenger and cargo services to Asia and Europe, as well as all domestic routes inside Bangladesh. Biman currently flies to 19 international and seven domestic routes.

About the Canadian Commercial Corporation
CCC is Canada’s government-to-government contracting organization. CCC supports the growth of international trade by helping Canadian exporters gain access to foreign government procurement opportunities. Through a unique government-to-government contracting approach, CCC positions qualified Canadian exporters to win international contracts with governments abroad. Through commercial advocacy, collaborative project development and international contracting expertise CCC helps Canadian exporters and foreign government buyers reduce procurement risk in key markets, including, information & communication technologies, cleantech, infrastructure, aerospace, and defence & public safety. www.ccc.ca

About De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited
With its acquisition of the Dash 8 aircraft program, Longview Aviation Capital has proudly relaunched De Havilland Canada, one of Canada’s most iconic brands. De Havilland Canada’s portfolio includes support to the worldwide fleet of Dash 8-100/200/300/400 aircraft, as well as production and sales of the Dash 8-400 aircraft. With its low carbon footprint and operating costs, industry-leading passenger experience and jet-like performance, the Dash 8-400 aircraft, which seats up to 90 passengers, is the environmentally responsible choice for operators seeking optimal performance on regional routes. https://dehavilland.com

Brand new Dash 8-400 aircraft to be added to Biman fleet Nov 24

From The Daily Star – link to source story

A brand new Dash 8-400 aircraft is going to be added to the fleet of Biman Bangladesh Airlines on November 24. Photo courtesy: Biman Bangladesh Airlines

Star Online Report ~ November 22, 2020

A brand new Dash 8-400 aircraft is going to be added to the fleet of Biman Bangladesh Airlines on November 24.

The aircraft is the first of three aircrafts purchased on GTG basis between the governments of Bangladesh and Canada.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has named the aircraft “Dhrubatara”, says a press release of Biman.

The number of aircrafts in the Biman fleet will be 19 with the inclusion of the new one on November 24.

With the addition of the Dash 8 aircraft to the fleet, Biman plans to increase its flight frequency on domestic and short-haul international routes.

The new Dash 8-400 is a 74-seater aircraft built by De Havilland, a well-known Canadian aircraft manufacturer.

Equipped with eco-friendly and state-of-the-art facilities, the aircraft has HEPA filter technology that purifies the air inside the aircraft by destroying bacteria, viruses and other germs, the release read.

The aircraft will also have more legs pace, LED lighting and wide windows, it added.

De Havilland Canada Delivers Two Dash 8-400 Aircraft to Ethiopian Airlines

  • The deliveries include the airline’s milestone 30th Dash 8-400 aircraft
  • The Ethiopian flag carrier and its strategic airline partners continue to showcase the outstanding operational performance of the Dash 8 aircraft across Africa

TORONTO, Oct. 23, 2020 /CNW/ – De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (“De Havilland Canada”) announces the delivery of another two Dash 8-400 aircraft to Ethiopian Airlines (“Ethiopian”), including the airline’s milestone 30th Dash 8-400 aircraft. The 30th aircraft – MSN 4617 – is preparing to depart for Ethiopian’s hub in Addis Ababa, along with aircraft MSN 4615. Ethiopian first welcomed the Dash 8-400 aircraft into its fleet in March 2010.

Ethiopian Airlines Dash 8-400 Aircraft (CNW Group/De Havilland Aircraft of Canada)

“This milestone 30th delivery highlights our confidence in the Dash 8-400 aircraft and is a testament to the joint success in supporting our network and strategic partnerships with several carriers across Africa,” said Tewolde GebreMariam, Group Chief Executive Officer, Ethiopian Airlines. “The Dash 8-400 aircraft continues to provide the operational flexibility, exceptional performance capability, capacity and passenger comfort we need. Most importantly, the Dash 8-400 aircraft supports the cost leadership strategy we rely on in our market  particularly in these unprecedented times during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“We congratulate Ethiopian Airlines on continuing a phenomenal growth trajectory and increasing connectivity within Africa,” said Sameer Adam, Regional Vice President, Sales – Europe and Russia, Middle East, Africa, and South America/Caribbean. “Ethiopian has taken tremendous positive steps to strengthen their capabilities with the acquisition of the first Dash 8-400 simulator for Africa and by recently adding a second simulator; achieving recognition as an Authorized Service Facility; and proving the value of a business class configuration on regional aircraft in Africa. We certainly look forward to more examples of Ethiopian’s continuing leadership and the success of their ongoing strategic partnerships with ASKY Airlines, Malawi Airlines, Ethiopian Moçambique Airlines and Tchadia Airlines in the operation of Dash 8-400 aircraft across Africa.”

The fleet of over 155 Dash 8 Series aircraft in Africa includes more than 90 Dash 8-400 aircraft. Worldwide, more than 155 airlines, leasing companies and other organizations have ordered almost 1,300 Dash 8 aircraft.

The fleet of Dash 8 Series aircraft across the globe supports diverse airline operating models as low cost carriers, network connectors and point-to-point regional aircraft. They are also deployed in hybrid passenger-cargo operations and all-cargo operations, and many provide an ideal platform for special mission operations  including fire-fighting, search and rescue, medical evacuation and coastal surveillance.

De Havilland Canada continues to focus on delivering exceptional support to operators of Dash 8 aircraft and is currently assisting customers who need help in updating their fleet utilization and network recovery models during the pandemic.

About De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited
With its acquisition of the Dash 8 aircraft program, Longview Aviation Capital has proudly relaunched De Havilland Canada, one of Canada’s most iconic brands. De Havilland Canada’s portfolio includes support to the worldwide fleet of Dash 8-100/200/300/400 aircraft, as well as production and sales of the Dash 8-400 aircraft. With its low carbon footprint and operating costs, industry-leading passenger experience and jet-like performance, the Dash 8-400 aircraft, which seats up to 90 passengers, is the environmentally responsible choice for operators seeking optimal performance on regional routes.  https://dehavilland.com

De Havilland, De Havilland Component Solutions, Dash 8, Dash 8-100/200/300 and Dash 8-400 are trademarks of De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited. 

De Havilland Canada Dash 8-400 Turboprop Becomes First Regional Aircraft Recertified to Meet ICAO’s Most Stringent Noise Standards

  • The recertification is a testament to the Dash 8-400 aircraft’s low community noise footprint during take-off and landing
  • Operators will have no need to re-fleet or re-engine in order to meet ICAO Chapter 14 requirements

TORONTO, Sept. 1, 2020 /CNW/ – De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (“De Havilland Canada”) announced today that the Dash 8-400 turboprop aircraft has been recertified to meet the latest noise emission standards set by ICAO Chapter 14.  The Dash 8-400 aircraft is the first propeller-driven aircraft, and also the first regional aircraft in the world, to achieve the certification.  

ICAO Chapter 14, which is equivalent to FAA Stage 5 and is the most recent in a series of stringent noise limits introduced by governing bodies to regulate aircraft noise emission, takes effect after December 31, 2020 for all new subsonic jet and propeller-driven aircraft.

“De Havilland Canada takes pride in complying with the latest noise requirements set by ICAO, and the achievement of this recertification is a testament to the Dash 8-400 aircraft’s low community noise footprint  during take-off and landing,” said Robert Mobilio, Vice President, Engineering and Quality, De Havilland Canada. “We have proactively recertified to the latest, more stringent standards in order to provide maximum benefits to our operating fleet.

“Our fleet, of more than 600 aircraft delivered, will derive the benefit of the recertification and will have the ability to access noise sensitive airports with fewer limitations and lower noise-related charges without the need for product change to meet ICAO Chapter 14 requirements,” added Mr. Mobilio.

Featuring quiet, swept, six-bladed Dowty propellers on Pratt & Whitney Canada PW150A engines, the Dash 8-400 aircraft has once again proven to be an environmentally advanced design. Not only is it quiet on the outside, it is also quiet inside the cabin. In order to further boost the comfort for passengers, the Dash 8-400 aircraft is engineered with a newly improved, proprietary Active Noise and Vibration Suppression (ANVS) system that effectively reduces the propeller noise level inside the aircraft to maximize cabin comfort. The Dash 8-400 aircraft has been acoustically engineered to mitigate the detrimental effects of noise on human health – inside and out, on the ground and in the sky. 

From passengers to cargo: How airlines are overhauling their business – and their planes

News from The Globe and Mail – link to story and updates

Matthew McClearn ~ 11 May 2020

Air Canada’s first Boeing 777-300ER converted for cargo service, seen here, carried personal protective equipment from Shanghai to Toronto last month.COURTESY OF MANUFACTURER

More than a quarter of a century after retiring its last dedicated freighter, Air Canada is back in the business of flying exclusive cargo flights.

Last month, the passenger airline removed seats from four Boeing 777 300ERs, more than doubling the space available for goods on the planes. The aircraft are primarily moving masks, gowns and other personal protective equipment necessary to combat COVID-19 from Shanghai to Canada. The airline also plans to convert four Airbus A330s to serve routes to Europe and South America.

“We weren’t looking to be in the freighter business until this moment,” said Tim Strauss, the airline’s vice-president of cargo. “We’re doing this so we can get more PPE equipment back into Canada faster than could have been done otherwise.”

American Airlines and Finland’s Finnair have also rapidly converted aircraft into freighters, and new announcements arrive weekly. Now everyone from ground crews to airport officials to regulators are scrambling to adapt to these strange hybrid planes.

While not unprecedented, such wholesale repurposing of aircraft occurs only during humanitarian crises, said Jonathan McDonald, an analyst with aviation consultancy IBA. Rare examples included large-scale airlifts after a tropical cyclone destroyed Darwin, Australia, in 1974, and during famines in Ethiopia.

“In history, yes, there have been one-off events. You had the Berlin Airlift, I suppose, but that’s going back 70-plus years.”

Normally, people are a passenger airline’s most valuable cargo. But COVID-19 halted most human traffic and grounded fleets worldwide. Because passenger jets also carry cargo – typically high-value goods that justify increased air shipping costs – the result was a dramatic drop in available capacity for urgent shipments.

“In the pre-COVID-19 environment, 70 per cent of our cargo was travelling in the bellies of passenger aircraft,” said Craig Bradbrook, vice-president of aviation services at the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA), which runs Pearson International Airport. “The airlines have scrambled to look at ways in which they can continue to move cargo.”

In a bid to replace some of that lost capacity and a small fraction of the revenue they’ve lost as a result of COVID-19 travel bans, airlines began flying cargo-only flights. At first, some airlines strapped boxes onto seats in passenger compartments. But Air Canada quickly realized this approach risked damaging the pricey video entertainment systems on seat backs. Moving cargo in passenger cabins is also slow and cumbersome.

The airline’s maintenance chief, Richard Steer, suggested removing the seats and stuffing cargo into the cabin. Canada’s aviation regulator, Transport Canada, responded encouragingly to the proposal. Air Canada partnered with Avianor, a firm that specializes in commercial jet cabins, to convert the 777s at Montréal-Mirabel International Airport.

Late last month, Jazz Airlines (which operates as Air Canada Express) announced plans to convert up to 13 of its Dash 8-400 aircraft using a “simplified package freighter” kit provided by the manufacturer, De Havilland Canada. De Havilland is in the process of introducing kits for earlier Dash 8 models.

Todd Young, De Havilland’s chief operating officer, said his company already had a program in the works to convert Dash 8s into dedicated freighters. After COVID-19 struck, the company realized it needed a more immediate solution.

“We wanted to keep our airplanes flying,” he said. “We wanted our customers to have options, to be able to perform a different mission than transporting personnel or passengers from point to point.”

Since announcing the conversion kits with Jazz, five international customers have placed their own orders, Mr. Young said.

Passenger airliners were routinely converted for cargo service before the pandemic; manufacturers such as Boeing, as well as third parties, have been doing brisk business in recent years. But proper conversions are a one-way trip, typically reserved for mid-life jets. Seats, overhead bins and “monuments” such as areas designated for flight attendants and catering are removed. A new, larger door is cut. Floors are reinforced, windows are plugged, and cargo handling systems and fire suppression equipment are installed. Afterward, a converted plane can be expected to haul cargo for 15 years or more.

Such changes permanently alter an aircraft’s balance and weight; it can take years to satisfy regulators that a given conversion process produces jets that are safe to fly.

They’re also costly. Mr. McDonald said the price for a 737-400 can be up to US$3-million. For wide-body aircraft such as 767s, it’s about US$14-million.

These COVID-19 conversions are rapid and inexpensive by comparison. Air Canada’s 777s, for instance, are far too young to be candidates for permanent conversion. “It’s very much a temporary role change for the aircraft,” Mr. McDonald said. “There’s obviously very good intentions, it’s humanitarian, it’s doing your bit to fight this bloody coronavirus, and it provides utilization for aircraft, which would otherwise just be sitting.”

The limited nature of the changes also helps comfort regulators. De Havilland’s conversion kits, for instance, couldn’t be more straightforward. Operators remove the seats and install tie-down fittings to hold 17 nets for securing cargo inside the passenger compartment. Aircraft can be converted overnight, Mr. Young said.

To facilitate regulatory approval, Air Canada sought a much lower maximum cargo weight than a 777 is capable of carrying – no great sacrifice, because PPE doesn’t weigh much. The aircraft’s lock system for seats is compatible with hardware for securing nets, further simplifying matters.

“We made it as simple to approve as you could possibly make it,” said Mr. Strauss, who praised Transport Canada’s rapid accommodation.

Mr. Strauss said Air Canada would like to convert some 787s as well, but those aircraft feature different seat locking mechanisms. “That would have taken a whole different certification process and much, much longer time,” he said. “Who knows if you’d even have it done this year?”

Airlines and regulators aren’t the only party forced to adapt to these unusual hybrid aircraft. Ground handlers must also figure out how to work with them.

“It’s still a passenger aircraft in terms of design,” Mr. Bradbrook said. “The door apertures are for passengers. They were never designed to take bulk cargo. So we’ve had to work with airlines and ground handlers to look at new processes for loading and unloading cargo piece by piece.” GTAA has provided mobile roller beds to handlers, and some airlines are using catering trucks to load cargo onto the main deck.

Gradually, efficiency is improving. Air Canada’s first loading in Shanghai late last month took five hours, but with optimization and experience that was quickly compressed to one hour and 15 minutes – all while maintaining physical distancing.

But temporarily converted planes will never be as efficient or inexpensive to operate as dedicated freighters. They introduce new costs: Crew members are required in cabins on temporarily converted Dash 8s to monitor packages and react in the event of fire, for example. And they’ll never replace passengers, which Mr. Strauss said usually brings in at least five times as much revenue a kilogram as cargo does.

Moreover, routes typically enjoy two-way traffic. Yet during COVID-19, cargo often moves in only one direction, for example from China to Canada.

All that helps explain today’s sky-high air cargo rates. Mr. Bradbrook said he’d heard they’d tripled. “The rates are high,” Mr. Strauss said. “I’ve never seen anything quite like it.”

Asked how many more temporary conversions will take place during COVID-19, Mr. McDonald said he couldn’t hazard a guess.

“In order to make a reliable forecast, sometimes you need past data to gauge trends and habits. This is such a new phenomenon that you can’t gauge to what extent people are going to do this. It’s still very early days.”

Jazz Aviation and Air Canada Cargo to be First to Operate Routes with Dash 8-400 Aircraft Simplified Package Freighter Developed by De Havilland Canada

From Air Canada

Jazz Aviation and Air Canada Cargo to be First to Operate Routes with Dash 8-400 Aircraft Simplified Package Freighter Developed by De Havilland Canada

  • Re-configured aircraft can carry a total of 18,000 lbs [8,165 kg] cargo in cabin and belly
  • Enables transport of critical supplies to regional Canadian communities

HALIFAX and MONTREAL, April 24, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ – Chorus Aviation Inc. (“Chorus”) and its subsidiary Jazz Aviation LP (“Jazz”) announced today that Jazz and Air Canada, through its freight division Air Canada Cargo, will begin operating the recently approved Dash 8-400 Simplified Package Freighter developed by De Havilland Canada to short and medium haul markets under the Air Canada Express banner. These reconfigured aircraft will carry a total of 18,000 lbs [8,165 kg] of cargo in the passenger cabin and belly.

“De Havilland Canada’s Dash 8-400 Simplified Package Freighter will allow us to redeploy aircraft, while contributing to the collective fight against COVID-19 by supporting our customer, Air Canada, in the delivery of essential cargo,” said Randolph deGooyer, President, Jazz Aviation LP.  

“This aircraft will allow us to provide critical cargo lift on short and medium-haul routes that have been impacted by the reduction of passenger flights,” said Tim Strauss, Vice-President Air Canada Cargo. “The converted cabin, which can accommodate a cargo volume of 1,150 cubic feet is perfectly suited to loose load cargo like medical supplies, PPE and other goods needed to support the ongoing fight against COVID-19.”

Under an agreement with De Havilland Canada, Jazz has ordered a Service Bulletin and conversion kit that will be applied to the first of 13 select Dash 8-400 aircraft. De Havilland Canada will be the exclusive supplier of all future Dash 8-400 aircraft Simplified Package Freighter modifications for Jazz’s fleet. 

To facilitate the cargo-only flights, Air Canada Cargo has created five, segment-specific sales teams to focus on the unique needs of customers at different levels in the supply chain. Enquiries from shippers interested in Air Canada Cargo’s services may be sent to a special freighter email address that is monitored 24 hours per day: AC.freighter@aircanada.ca.

About Chorus Aviation and Jazz Aviation
Chorus is a global provider of integrated regional aviation solutions. Chorus’ vision is to deliver regional aviation to the world. Headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Chorus is comprised of Chorus Aviation Capital a leading, global lessor of regional aircraft, and Jazz Aviation and Voyageur Aviation – companies that have long histories of safe operations with excellent customer service. Chorus provides a full suite of regional aviation support services that encompasses every stage of an aircraft’s lifecycle, including aircraft acquisitions and leasing; aircraft refurbishment, engineering, modification, repurposing and preparation; contract flying; aircraft and component maintenance, disassembly, and parts provisioning.

Jazz Aviation LP has a strong history in Canadian aviation with its roots going back to the 1930s. As the largest regional carrier in Canada, Jazz has a proven track record of industry leadership and exceptional customer service and has leveraged that strength to deliver value to all its stakeholders. Jazz, under the Air Canada Express brand, operates more flights and flies to more Canadian destinations than any other airline, and has a workforce of approximately 5,000 professionals, highly experienced in the challenging and complex nature of regional operations.

About Air Canada and Air Canada Cargo
Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline. Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, the world’s most comprehensive air transportation network. Air Canada is the only international network carrier in North America to receive a Four-Star ranking according to independent U.K. research firm Skytrax, which also named Air Canada the 2019 Best Airline in North America.

Through its cargo division, Air Canada has been using mainline aircraft that would otherwise be parked to operate cargo-only flights. The aircraft on these flights carry no passengers but move in their baggage holds time-sensitive shipments, including urgent medical supplies, and goods to support the global economy. Air Canada has reconfigured the passenger cabins of three Boeing 777-300ER aircraft to give them additional cargo capacity, doubling the cargo capacity of those aircraft.

Air Canada Cargo, the freight division of Air Canada, provides cargo service to over 450 cities worldwide, with self-handled hubs in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, Chicago, London and Frankfurt that allow for rapid shipment of goods.

Chorus Aviation issues statement regarding the administration of Flybe Limited

Provided by Chorus Aviation Inc/CNW

HALIFAX, March 5, 2020 /CNW/ – Earlier today, Flybe Limited (‘Flybe’) ceased operating and was placed in administration.  Chorus had three ATR 72-600 and five Dash 8-400 aircraft on lease with Flybe.

These aircraft account for less than 5.0% of the net book value of Chorus’ regional aircraft leasing segment fleet and less than 5.0% of Chorus’ consolidated annualized 2019 EBITDA. Chorus holds security in respect of these aircraft and has a plan to manage their repossession and remarketing.  Furthermore, Chorus’ loan agreements provide time and flexibility to remarket the aircraft.

“We have planned for this contingency and are executing against our plan,” stated Steven Ridolfi, President, Chorus Aviation Capital. “We are currently in negotiations with prospects for these aircraft. As noted, these aircraft represent only a small portion of the value of our leased aircraft portfolio.”

Nordic Aviation Capital to be De Havilland Canada’s First Customer for Classic Overhead Bin Extension on Dash 8-400 Aircraft

Provided by De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited/CNW

TORONTO, Feb. 25, 2020 /CNW/ – De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (“De Havilland Canada”) announced today that Nordic Aviation Capital will be the launch customer for the Classic Overhead Bin Extension Solution for the Dash 8-400 aircraft. Under this agreement, De Havilland Canada will be the exclusive supplier of all future Dash 8-400 aircraft classic bin extension modifications for Nordic Aviation Capital’s fleet. The cost-efficient and environmentally friendly solution provides additional stowage volume in the Dash 8 aircraft’s cabin and is the perfect solution to meet growing customer requirements for more baggage space.

De Havilland Canada specifically designed the Classic Overhead Bin Extension to accommodate standard roll-aboard bags, thereby reducing the need for gate check service, and greatly improving airline efficiency and passenger comfort. Following each modification, the bins will feature more baggage volume, a larger door opening, a new door with NextGen latches, and will offer a consistent look-and-feel with newer Dash 8-400 aircraft interiors. Each bin also retains the robust design features that have been proven over millions of flights and will now accommodate two standard 22″ Travelpro bags per bin section.

“Over the last few years we have seen an increase in customer carry-on bags as well as an expansion in bag sizes. Having a new configuration that is able to meet these needs is very exciting for us and our customers,” said Tom Turley, Chief Operating Officer, Nordic Aviation Capital. “The Classic Overhead Bin Extension will allow those boarding and departing the aircraft to store and access their belongings with ease, improving overall gate-time and efficiency for passengers and airlines.”

“We are proud to announce Nordic Aviation Capital as the launch customer for the Classic Overhead Bin Extension for the Dash 8-400 aircraft,” said Todd Young, Chief Operating Officer, De Havilland Canada. “We are excited to have an environmentally friendly solution that manages the need for increased capacity in overhead bins. The extension will provide passengers a more enjoyable travel experience, and airlines a consistent interior layout.”

The Classic Overhead Bin Extension solution is currently being developed with De Havilland Canada’s supplier Safran Interiors.