Air Transport : Eu Updates Black List of Unsafe Airlines

Article excerpt

The European Commission is preparing to update the black list of airline companies banned from the EU. This is in response to the unanimous opinion of the Air Safety Committee of the changes that need to be made to the list, received by the Commission on 28 June. They are then expected to be made official on 4 July and come into force two days later. This will be the fourth time that the list has been updated since it was first drawn up in March 2006.

Certain companies will be included in the list for the first time and will henceforth no longer be allowed to land or take off in the EU. These include all Indonesian airline companies (51 airlines), the Angolan passenger airline TAAG and the Ukrainian cargo airline Volare Aviation Enterprise. Not surprisingly, the case involving all Indonesian airlines was the most complicated. Although none of the airlines fly in Europe - Indonesia's main airline stopped flying to an from Europe several months ago - many of them are used regularly in package holidays', which include stopovers in Indonesia.

In real terms, being added to the black list will not stop this. Travel agents in Europe will still be able to sell Indonesian destinations with one of these companies of dubious safety' but only on internal flights and not the flight from Europe. But under the terms of Regulation 2111/2005, which created the list, passengers will have to be informed of the name of the airline with which they will be flying. This will allow them to make an informed decision before buying their ticket, in theory at least, because it will still be up to them to find out whether the company is on the black list (this is easily done either on the Commission website or by means of information usually available at travel agencies). Tourists who had already bought their tickets before the ban will be allowed to cancel their trip, at no extra cost, or ask to be transferred to another airline. …