Airlines have warned of safety as planes leave storage

Airlines are being warned about safety as they reactivate planes stored for months.

The global air transport crisis has seen an unprecedented number of jets parked.

At one point, two-thirds of the world’s fleet was stranded on the ground.

When they return to the skies, regulators worry about everything from maintenance errors to rusty pilots.

The International Air Transport Association says this year has seen a sharp increase in the number of poor landings – some resulting in accidents.

In May, 97 people were killed after a Pakistan International Airlines plane crashed following an unstable approach to the airport.

Now some insurers want to know if carriers offer additional landing training for pilots who have been on long leave.

European regulators say this year has also seen an alarming increase in incidents involving poor speed or altitude readings.

In June, a Wizz Air pilot had to abandon take-off after noticing that the speed indicated zero.

A ground examination revealed insects nestled inside a key sensor.

This after the plane had been parked for 12 weeks.

Similar incidents have caused fatal accidents in the past.

Regulators say long out-of-service periods are also raising concerns, including contaminated fuel and depleted batteries in emergency systems.

Now the airlines have developed training programs for rusty travelers.

But an industry association says pilots need to be honest about their abilities and confidence when they return to duty.

Lives could depend on it.

Video transcript

Airlines are being warned about safety as they reactivate planes stored for months. The global air transport crisis has seen an unprecedented number of jets parked. At one point, two-thirds of the world’s fleet was stranded on the ground. When they return to the skies, regulators worry about everything from maintenance errors to rusty pilots.

The International Air Transport Association says this year has seen a sharp increase in the number of poor landings, some resulting in accidents. In May, 97 people were killed after a Pakistan International Airlines plane crashed following an unstable approach to the airport. Now some insurers want to know if carriers offer additional landing training for pilots who have been on long leave. European regulators say this year has also seen an alarming increase in incidents involving poor air speed or altitude readings.

In June, a Wizz Air pilot had to abandon take-off after noticing that the air speed read zero. A ground examination revealed insects nestled inside a key sensor, after the plane had been parked for 12 weeks. Similar incidents have caused fatal accidents in the past. Regulators say long periods out of service are also raising concerns, including contaminated fuel and depleted batteries in emergency systems.

Now the airlines have developed training programs for rusty aviators. But an industry association says pilots need to be honest about their abilities and confidence when they return to duty. Lives could depend on it.

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