UPDATED: Cape Breton debut of PAL Airlines may be facing another delay

From Saltwire – link to source story

Low booking reason for changing start date once more

Ian Nathanson · Updated: June 16, 2021

A PAL Airlines Dash 8-100 aircraft, the plane to be used when the carrier starts offering Sydney-Halifax flights. Service was expecting to start June 28, but now looks like it will launch the end of July. -- CONTRIBUTED
A PAL Airlines Dash 8-100 aircraft, the plane to be used when the carrier starts offering Sydney-Halifax flights. Service was expecting to start June 28, but now looks like it will launch the end of July. — CONTRIBUTED

SYDNEY, N.S. — The newest airline set to fly out of Sydney airport is expressing concern over the low number of bookings in place for its Sydney-Halifax route, and says it will be delaying its start date once again.

Janine Browne, PAL Airlines' director of business development and sales, says the airline has been watching Nova Scotia's plans to perhaps open up for domestic air travel. — CONTRIBUTED - Contributed
Janine Browne, PAL Airlines’ director of business development and sales, says the airline has been watching Nova Scotia’s plans to perhaps open up for domestic air travel. — CONTRIBUTED – Contributed

PAL Airlines announced during a presentation to Cape Breton Regional Municipality council that the June 28 scheduled launch of the airline at J.A. Douglas McCurdy Sydney Airport will now be moved toward the end of July.

“It is a likely change — it has not been confirmed in our system just yet,” said Janine Browne, director of business development and sales for the St. John’s, N.L.-based airline. “We have not seen the bookings that we would like to have seen. We hope that that does change, and that bookings will pick up in the next month.”

Expanding outside the Newfoundland and Labrador area, PAL Airlines initially planned to launch at Sydney airport on May 31. Due to a surge in COVID-19 cases at the time and the ensuing “circuit-breaker” lockdown put into effect in Nova Scotia, that launch date was then pushed back to June 28.

With Nova Scotia just announcing its second phase of easing pandemic restrictions and its participation in the Atlantic bubble for June 23, Browne said she would like to see the Sydney-Halifax route “meet a demand that exists in the market, and that we’re able to launch a sustainable, long-term flight” for that route.

Browne told the Cape Breton Post that so far the date change appears to apply only to the Sydney-Halifax flight, “but we’re monitoring the demand in all the regions we’re deploying. It’s looking very strong in some regions, and it’s not in others.” 

BASED ON DEMAND

Sydney airport CEO Mike MacKinnon, who confirmed July 30 as PAL’s newest restart date, said the airline is taking these date adjustments seriously.

Mike MacKinnon - Contributed
Mike MacKinnon – Contributed

“Their business decisions are based on the demand out there,” he said. “And because of the uncertainty of the restrictions in our province, that has curtailed consumer demand up until this point.

“Now we, or the airline, might start to see bookings gather some steam with the news about the Atlantic bubble coming back and hopefully more good news will come in the conversations between the premiers to talk about reopening our region to the rest of Canada.”

PAL’s three-times-a-week departure schedule from Sydney and three-times-a-week arrival schedule from Halifax on alternate days will remain the same, Browne said.

Browne and PAL’s sales director Steve Short also told council of its pricing scale for the eventual launch: starting with an introductory price of $69 one-way — one of four different pricing levels offered.

More information is available at PAL Airlines’ website.

Ravn Alaska Commences Cabin Disinfection Procedures on Dash 8 Aircraft with Autonomous UVC Disinfecting Robot Manufactured by aero hygenx

RAY, the robot delivers high-frequency UVC light that destroys up to 99.9% of pathogens – including the COVID-19 virus.

OTTAWA, ON and TORONTO, May 27, 2021 /CNW/ – Ravn Alaska has introduced RAY, the autonomous robot to disinfect its Dash 8 aircraft cabins between flights. Designed and manufactured by aero hygenx inc. in Canada, with support from De Havilland Aircraft of Canada (“De Havilland Canada”), the robot emits ultraviolet-C (UVC) light to provide consistent, sustainable and chemical-free disinfection of cabin air and surfaces between flights. Ravn Alaska, which operates 10 Dash 8-100 aircraft manufactured by De Havilland Canada, is one of the first airlines to utilize the robot on regional aircraft.

Image of RAY in Cabin of Dash 8-100 Aircraft (CNW Group/De Havilland Aircraft of Canada)
Image of RAY in Cabin of Dash 8-100 Aircraft (CNW Group/De Havilland Aircraft of Canada)

RAY delivers high-frequency UVC light that destroys up to 99.9% of pathogens – including the COVID-19 virus. The use of UVC light reduces the need for frequent chemical-based disinfection that could impact aircraft interior surfaces and sensitive equipment, and leave residues that may come into contact with passengers and crew.

“We are enhancing our ability to keep our passengers safe by including the chemical-free disinfection method provided by RAY among the procedures we are utilizing to sanitize our Dash 8 aircraft,” said Rob McKinney, Chief Executive Officer, Ravn Alaska. “We anticipate that RAY will be a valuable asset to our airline and for other airlines around the world, as together we seek to rebuild passenger confidence and help our industry recover.”   

aero hygenx (CNW Group/De Havilland Aircraft of Canada)
aero hygenx (CNW Group/De Havilland Aircraft of Canada)

“The transportation industry has been brought to its knees as a result of the pandemic. Now, more than ever, rapid, consistent, safe, chemical-free disinfection of air and surfaces is vital for employee and passenger safety in the fight against current and future pandemics,” said Arash Mahin, Chief Executive Officer, aero hygenx. “We are grateful for the support De Havilland Canada provided to optimize RAY for use in the Dash 8 Series aircraft. We are confident operators will see significant savings compared to traditional chemical-based cleaning methods.”

“We look forward to seeing the deployment of many more UVC-light emitting, RAY robots among operators of Dash 8 aircraft,” said Robert Mobilio, Vice President, Engineering and Quality, De Havilland Canada. “De Havilland Canada has been working throughout the pandemic to help our operators with solutions that assist in returning airline fleets to service, so we were happy to support aero hygenx in customizing RAY for use on regional aircraft and are very pleased that a long-time Dash 8 operator such as Ravn is part of this journey.”

Optimized for use on Dash 8 Series aircraft, RAY delivers the required UVC dosage and 360° coverage throughout the cabin, lavatories and crew area. The disinfection procedure between flights on Dash 8 Series aircraft can be completed in under five minutes. Unlike traditional, chemical-based cleaning methods, no additional time is required for chemicals to dissipate before crew and passengers can board the aircraft. RAY is monitored continuously through HygenX Stream, and operators can access valuable key metrics and reports related to fleet disinfection, unit health monitoring and predictive maintenance. HygenX Stream also facilitates the customization of the level of disinfection based on flight duration and regional risk factors. It also provides the ability to integrate into operators’ mobile Apps in order to boost passenger confidence. 

About Ravn Alaska

Ravn Alaska is a regional airline headquartered in Anchorage that services 14 communities across Alaska. The airline provides daily flights aboard its safety-rated De Havilland Dash 8-100 fleet, charter flights and cargo shipments. Visit https://ravnalaska.com/ to book a flight and learn more about Ravn. 

About aero hygenx

aero hygenx is headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, where it has developed and manufactures its revolutionary autonomous UVC robot called RAY. Its founders and executives have a passion for the aviation industry and a combined 80+ years of experience in safety and quality management, airline operations, software, electrical engineering and electromagnetics. The company’s vision is to instill confidence in passengers to travel again and set a new precedent in the transportation disinfecting industry. www.aerohygenx.com

About De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited

De Havilland Canada’s portfolio includes support to the worldwide fleet of Dash 8 Series aircraft (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.  https://dehavilland.com

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

Chorus Aviation announces three-year cargo charter services agreement with Purolator

HALIFAX, NS, May 5, 2021 /CNW/ – Chorus Aviation Inc. (‘Chorus’) (TSX: CHR) is proud to announce that its subsidiary, Voyageur Aviation Corp. (‘Voyageur’), has signed a contract with Purolator Inc. (‘Purolator’) for the provision of air cargo charter services. The term of the contract is for three years, effective April 12, 2021 and follows the successful completion of an initial six-month trial service. 

“We are delighted to have established this relationship with Purolator and honored they have chosen us to serve their valued customers. We have been active in air cargo through the conversion of several Dash 8 aircraft to package freighters, however, this contract with Purolator marks a meaningful step in the expansion of our capabilities in the cargo market,” said Joe Randell, President and Chief Executive Officer, Chorus.  “For Chorus, the air cargo market is a growing area of focus. This is another example of our integrated offering of regional services, and evidence of our ability to utilize regional assets at various life stages.”

“These services demonstrate our ability to deliver solutions to customers with unique aviation requirements,” said Scott Tapson, President, Voyageur. “I am proud of the Voyageur team in securing this important contract.”

“Purolator is always investing in our network to meet the needs of our customers,” says Chris Spanjaard, Senior Vice President and Chief Operations Officer, Purolator. “This agreement with Voyageur complements our existing network and enhances our capability to service our cross-border business and customers with high-priority express shipments.” 

Under this new agreement, Voyageur will replace two Dash 8-100 Simplified Package Freighters (SPF) currently used for the trial service with two Dash 8-100 Package Freighters (PF). The Dash 8-100 PF was designed and developed by Voyageur, an Approved Maintenance Organization (AMO) and Design Approval Organization (DAO). The Dash 8-100 PF is designed to carry a typical payload of 10,400 pounds / 4,500 kilograms and a volume of 1,380 cubic feet / 39 cubic meters. This gives the aircraft the largest payload in the class of medium regional turboprops (30-40 passenger capacity) that have been subject to cargo conversion programs and represents a 38 percent increase in volume capacity over the Dash 8-100 SPF.

About Chorus Aviation Inc.

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; and aircraft and component maintenance, disassembly, and parts provisioning.

About Purolator 

Purolator Inc. is a leading integrated freight, package and logistics solutions provider in Canada. Celebrating 60 years of delivering its customers’ promises, Purolator continues to expand its reach and renowned service levels and reliability to more people, more businesses and more places across the country and around the world.  Purolator is proud of its Canadian heritage and is focused on sustainably positioning itself for future growth and success. Purolator is also committed to contributing to the well-being of the communities it serves and where more than 13,000 of its employees live, work and play. For more information, visit purolator.com. 

Voyageur Aviation awarded contract to upgrade Canada’s National Aerial Surveillance Program (NASP) fleet

HALIFAX, NS, April 29, 2021 /CNW/ – Chorus Aviation Inc. (‘Chorus’) (TSX: CHR) is proud to announce that its subsidiary, Voyageur Aviation Corp. (‘Voyageur’), has been awarded a 3-year contract to upgrade and modify Transport Canada’s National Aerial Surveillance Program (NASP) fleet of three Dash 8-100 and one Dash 7 aircraft with new surveillance equipment.

Since 1991, the iconic red planes of NASP have played an integral role in keeping our country safe by helping prevent pollution in Canadian waters, protecting the marine environment and endangered marine life, and ensuring a safe and efficient transportation industry along Canada’s massive and varied coastlines.

The contract involves the entire NASP fleet and includes the installation of surveillance equipment provisions for an electro-optical and infrared (‘EO/IR’) sensor, infrared and ultraviolet (‘IR/UV’) scanner for pollution monitoring, observation windows, mission crew seats, and other modifications to existing system installations. Additionally, one Dash 8-100 aircraft will receive Voyageur’s Long-Range Fuel System installation to enable missions requiring significant range and endurance.

“This contract demonstrates Voyageur’s unique engineering capabilities to support customers requiring innovative special mission solutions.” said Scott Tapson, President, Voyageur. “We are excited to expand our relationship with Transport Canada and look forward to working together on this project.”

All work for this contract will be completed at Voyageur’s 200,000 square foot maintenance and engineering facility located at its company headquarters in North Bay, Ontario.

About Voyageur Aviation Corp.

Voyageur Aviation Corp. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Chorus Aviation Inc. Voyageur is an integrated provider of specialized aviation services, including contract flying operations both internationally and domestically, and offers advanced engineering and maintenance capabilities. Headquartered in North Bay, Ontario, Voyageur delivers innovative solutions to customers with unique aviation requirements and operates under the core principles of comprehensive safety management, quality assurance, and client-dedicated solutions.   www.voyav.com

About Chorus Aviation Inc.

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; and aircraft and component maintenance, disassembly, and parts provisioning.

Canada’s PAL Airlines to expand to 11 cities this summer

From Flight Global – link to source story

By Jon Hemmerdinger | 7 April 2021

Canadian regional carrier PAL Airlines will expand its network this summer to include 11 new destinations in eastern Canada.

The expansion comes as Canada’s airlines eye a potential summer rebound in air travel demand.

PAL, which operates De Havilland Canada Dash 8 turboprops, will this summer add flights to Halifax and Sydney in Nova Scotia, and to Saint John, Fredericton and Bathurst in New Brunswick, the airline tells FlightGlobal.

PAL Airlines Dash
Source: PAL Airlines | A PAL Airlines De Havilland Canada Dash 8 turboprop

The expansion will also see PAL add service to Ottawa in Ontario and Charlottetown on Prince Edward Island. Additionally, it will begin flying to four cities in Quebec: Les Iles de la Madeleine, Gaspe, Baie-Comeau and Val-d’Or.

The Fredericton routes will include flights to Deer Lake, and onward to St John’s, and to Ottawa and Halifax, the Fredericton airport says on 7 April.

WestJet has also announced a planned expansion. That carrier intends to restore flights to several eastern Canadian cities in late June, meaning it would again serve all the cities it did prior to the pandemic.

RAY the Autonomous UVC Disinfecting Robot Manufactured by aero hygenx Enters Service on Hydro-Québec Dash 8 Aircraft

  • Designed and manufactured by aero hygenx inc. in Canada, with support from De Havilland Canada, the autonomous disinfection robot, RAY provides a consistent, sustainable and chemical-free method to disinfect cabin air and surfaces between flights

OTTAWA, ON and TORONTO, April 6, 2021 /CNW/ – Canadian-based operator of Dash 8 aircraft, Hydro-Québec, has introduced cabin disinfection procedures between flights utilizing the autonomous robot, RAY. It is the first use of a cabin disinfecting procedure using ultraviolet-C (UVC) light delivered by an autonomous robot on in-service regional aircraft and follows Hydro-Québec’s acquisition of the robot from designer and manufacturer aero hygenx inc. Hydro-Québec, Canada’s largest electricity producer, operates three Dash 8-300 and Dash 8-400 aircraft manufactured by De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (“De Havilland Canada”).

RAY delivers high-frequency UVC light that destroys up to 99.9% of pathogens – including the COVID-19 virus. The use of UVC light reduces the need for frequent chemical-based disinfection that could impact aircraft interior surfaces and sensitive equipment, and leave residues that may come into contact with passengers and crew. The payback period for RAY is less than 12 months and operators will see significant savings compared to when using chemical disinfectants.  In collaboration with De Havilland Canada, RAY has been optimized for use on the Dash 8 Series aircraft.

“With the COVID-19 pandemic surging on, it is important that we utilize effective and efficient disinfection techniques to ensure a pathogen-free cabin. We believe that RAY will be beneficial to our operation while providing a high level of confidence to employees who fly on our Dash 8 shuttle to the hydro-electric generating sites,” said René Collin, Manager – Air Transport, Hydro-Québec. 

“Rapid, consistent, and chemical-free disinfection of air and surfaces is vital for employee and passenger safety in the fight against pandemics,” said Arash Mahin, Chief Executive Officer, aero hygenx. “We are mindful of the industry’s economic challenges and are confident that RAY will deliver significant cost savings for aircraft operators from the onset. We are grateful and fortunate to have the support of De Havilland Canada, an aviation industry visionary, in helping us adapt RAY to assist the industry in these challenging times.”

“The completion of development and testing of  an innovative, chemical-free disinfection method at a rapid pace is a testament to the agility and versatility of the aero hygenx and De Havilland Canada teams who worked alongside each other to adapt RAY to cater to regional aircraft operations,” said Robert Mobilio, Vice President, Engineering and Quality, De Havilland Canada. “The vision was to create a solution that would provide immediate benefits to the entire regional aviation industry during the ongoing pandemic, as well as in the post-pandemic era where enhanced disinfection is expected to be a mainstay. Hydro-Québec is a highly accomplished, long-standing Dash 8 operator and we are happy to have them on board as launch customer for RAY.”

Optimized for use on Dash 8 Series aircraft, RAY has a compact body while still delivering the required UVC dosage and 360° coverage throughout the cabin, lavatories and crew area. The disinfection procedure between flights on Dash 8 Series aircraft can be completed in under five minutes, and no time is required to allow chemicals to dissipate before crew and passengers can board the aircraft, as is the case when chemical disinfection methods are used. Data analysis and reporting is available via the cloud-based HygenX Stream.

About Hydro-Québec
Hydro-Québec generates, transmits and distributes electricity. It is Canada’s largest electricity producer and ranks among the world’s largest hydropower producers. Its sole shareholder is the Québec government. The company uses mainly renewable generating options, in particular large hydro. Its research facilities, collectively called Institut de recherche d’Hydro-Québec (IREQ), conduct R&D in energy-related fields, including energy efficiency and storage. www.hydroquebec.com/

About aero hygenx
aero hygenx is headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, where it has developed and manufactures its revolutionary autonomous UVC robot called RAY. Its founders and executives have a passion for the aviation industry and a combined 80+ years of experience in safety and quality management, airline operations, software, electrical engineering and electromagnetics. The company’s vision is to instill confidence in passengers to travel again and set a new precedent in the transportation disinfecting industry. www.aerohygenx.com

About De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited
De Havilland Canada’s portfolio includes support to the worldwide fleet of Dash 8 Series aircraft (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. https://dehavilland.com

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

Ex-Flybe Q400 arrives at Conair base for firefighting modification

From Flight Global – link to source story

By David Kaminski-Morrow23 February 2021

Canada’s Conair Group has received the first in a batch of former Flybe Bombardier Q400s due for conversion into aerial firefighters.

The turboprop – registered G-KKEV, and originally delivered to the UK operator in 2008 – is one of 11 acquired by Conair for the modification, following the collapse of Flybe a year ago.

Conair will convert the aircraft, flown to Canada via Reykjavik, into Q400AT air tankers at its Abbotsford facility in British Columbia.

The modification will take around 75 days, the company states, and will begin this quarter with the intention of completing the work ahead of the North American wildfire season.

Conair Flybe Q400-c-Conair Group

Source: Conair Group

Modification of the Q400 will include fitting of flight-envelope safety avionics

Conair aircraft conversion manager Dustin Littler says the Q400’s interior will be stripped to the “bare frame” to minimise weight. The cabin will remain pressurised, with the retardant tank – capable of discharging 10,000 litres of fire suppressant – fitted externally.

The cockpit will be fitted with a flight-envelope awareness system, avionics which provide angle-of-attack, g-loading and slow-speed information to the crew – enhanced safety data to assist the pilots given the extreme nature of firefighting operations.

“Conair’s priority is the safety of their crews, proactively adopting innovative technologies that go beyond minimum standards,” says the company.

Director of business development Jeff Berry describes the Q400AT as the “most versatile air tanker of its size” for the firefighting role, adding that it is capable of operating from 5,000ft runways.

“This means [it] can respond to a multitude of fires, including those in more remote settings not located near large airports or tanker bases,” he says.

De Havilland Canada Charts Future for the Dash 8 Aircraft Program

Focused on enhancing support to the global Dash 8 community as the aviation industry recovers

TORONTO, Feb. 17, 2021 /CNW/ – De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (“De Havilland Canada”) today reaffirmed its long-term commitment to the global Dash 8 operator community and outlined the path forward for the Dash 8 aircraft program. While the pandemic has ravaged the global aviation industry, De Havilland Canada is making future-oriented investments in its organization, systems and infrastructure to enhance the Dash 8 platform for current and future aircraft operators.

“We fully expect worldwide demand for the Dash 8 to return once the industry has recovered from the pandemic, and the aircraft’s characteristics – including low operating costs, low emissions impact, and performance capabilities that support efficient regional operations – will make the Dash 8 an important part of the aviation industry’s post-pandemic recovery,” said David Curtis, Executive Chairman of Longview Aviation Capital, De Havilland Canada’s parent company. “The quality of the aircraft is demonstrated by the fact that we have significantly outperformed our competitors since the onset of the pandemic, delivering 11 aircraft to customers in 2020. While industry conditions remain challenging, we are looking to the future by enhancing our ability to support Dash 8 operators, and taking the necessary organizational steps to ensure we are ready to meet industry demand as the aviation industry recovers.”

Investing in the Dash 8 Platform

De Havilland Canada is introducing enhancements that will ensure the Dash 8 remains at the forefront of the regional aircraft market around the world:

  • Investing significant capital in the Customer Services and Support team, distribution network and information technology to reduce the operating cost of the Dash 8 platform
  • Developing upgrades and modifications to the Dash 8, including packages that create a best-in-class freighter with unmatched operating and financial attributes
  • Introducing cabin refurbishment features such as an overhead bin extension solution which improves the cost-efficiency of in-service Dash 8
  • Actively innovating across the aircraft platform, including product improvements that will reduce operating and ownership costs and help prepare Dash 8 fleets for the aviation industry’s move to greater sustainability.

In addition to these investments, De Havilland Canada continues to provide 24/7/365 customer support, and inventory over 35,000 part numbers required to serve the operating fleet from parts distribution locations in Canada and around the globe.

New Aircraft Production Pause

Given that prevailing industry circumstances have hindered the ability to confirm new aircraft sales, De Havilland Canada will not produce new Dash 8-400 aircraft at its Downsview site beyond currently confirmed orders. This is a responsible and prudent measure that reflects current industry conditions, and will limit strain on the market and De Havilland Canada’s supply base as the pandemic recovery occurs. Approximately 500 employees will be affected by the production pause.

De Havilland Canada’s objective is to resume new aircraft delivery at the earliest possible time, subject to market demand.

Downsview Production Site

The Downsview production site was sold by the previous owner Bombardier in 2018, with deadlines for the site and runway to be decommissioned. Pursuant to Bombardier’s sale agreement, the Dash 8 program’s current site lease expires in 2021. Accordingly, De Havilland Canada has begun preparing to leave the site over the latter part of the year. There are a number of excellent production site options in Canada, and the company will be ready to meet new aircraft demand as the industry recovers.

Added Mr. Curtis: “The transition from Downsview is a step in the planned evolution of the Dash 8 platform away from its former owner, and is an important part of our vision for Longview Aviation Capital as a leading global aviation company. While this evolution is taking place against the backdrop of unprecedented industry circumstances, we see a bright future for De Havilland Canada and the Dash 8. The Dash 8 is a segment defining aircraft, and it has never been in better hands – strengthened by being part of a robust aviation portfolio with patient long-term ownership. We are also the only company to have successfully re-launched an out-of-production aircraft, with our team bringing the renowned Series 400 Twin Otter back into production. We are fully committed to the Dash 8 and intend to further enhance its capabilities and performance, and remain a leader of the regional aircraft market of the future.

“We are sensitive to the impact that a production pause will have on our employees, and are committed to treating everyone with transparency and respect. This decision is no reflection on the quality of our team, which has performed exceedingly well through the disruptions of the past year.”

De Havilland to pause production this year after backlog built

From Leeham New – link to source story

By Scott Hamilton

Jan. 12, 2021, © Leeham News: De Havilland Canada will pause production later this year when the current Dash 8-400 backlog is assembled.

According to data reviewed by LNA, there are 17 Dash 8s scheduled for delivery to customers this year. There are two more that don’t have identified customers. It is unclear if these will be built.

DHC notified suppliers to stop sending parts and components to avoid building whitetails.

De Havilland assembled the Dash 8s at the Toronto plant previously owned by Bombardier. The lease on the facility expires in 2023. There is no decision whether to move the final assembly line to Western Canada, where DHC is headquartered.

Uncertain future

With only 17-19 orders for the Dash 8-400, the future is uncertain. There are 325 Dash 8s in storage: 186 -400s, 51 -300s, 25 -200s and 63 -100s. Only the -400s are in production. DHC’s focus right now is to help airlines return the Dash 8 to service, says Philippe Poutissou, vice president of sales and marketing.

With a large inventory of used aircraft and airlines awaiting recovery from the pandemic, there are few new sales opportunities.

DHC offers a firefighting version. Conair, which has two -400s scheduled for delivery this year, is one such customer. A maritime patrol version also is offered.

Rival ATR has a backlog of 46 ATR-42s, the competitor to the out-of-production Dash 8-300. The backlog for the ATR-72-600, the rival to the Dash 8-400, is 175. There are 286 ATR-72-500s/600s and 68 ATR-42-500s/600s in storage.

Transport Canada Extends Approvals for De Havilland Canada Dash 8 Simplified Package Freighters

Dash 8 SPF conversions will continue to support airlift of freight in response to COVID-19

TORONTO, Sept. 4, 2020 /CNW/ – De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Limited (“De Havilland Canada”) announced today that Transport Canada has confirmed the extension of approvals that permit the conversion of Dash 8 Series aircraft into Simplified Package Freighters (SPF) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The approvals which now extend to July 31, 2021, will allow for continued flexibility in the transportation of goods in the framework of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There is an ongoing, fundamental need for the transport of humanitarian aid and cargo; air cargo services therefore continue to be vital for the economy, financial stability of aircraft operators, and for fighting COVID-19,” said Amod Kelkar, Vice President, Customer Services and Support, De Havilland Canada. “We are therefore delighted that Transport Canada has confirmed an extension to the approvals for our Dash 8 Series Simplified Package Freighters.

“Our teams have issued the revised Aircraft Flight Manual supplements to customers who bought this solution and we are working to convert the SPF modifications to permanent Service Bulletins based on the need and the regulatory allowances. Our goal is to stay in close contact with our customers to ensure that their requirements are met during this challenging time and we will provide more updates as we progress further,” added Mr. Kelkar.

De Havilland Canada’s Service Bulletins allow Dash 8-100/200, Dash 8-300 and Dash 8-400 aircraft to be quickly converted into Simplified Package Freighters by the removal of seats and seat track covers in the passenger cabins. The converted Dash 8-100/200, Dash 8-300 and Dash 8-400 aircraft provide total potential cargo capacities of up to 6,500 lb, up to 9,625 lb and up to 17,960 lb respectively.