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ZestAir Philippines grounded over safety issues
18 August 2013
File photo of a ZestAir Airbus A320 (photo: Peter Villamer Sanchez)

File photo of a ZestAir Airbus A320 (photo: Peter Villamer Sanchez)

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) has, on 16 August 2013,  suspended the Air Operator Certificate of  ZestAir over safety issues.

The authorities said the decision to ground the airline was based on the findings following a monitoring and surveillance visit by a team of CAAP’s airworthiness inspectors on July 31. CAAP stated that “the report submitted by the inspectors showed continuing violations of Zest Air on air safety standards.”

Among the violations found by CAAP were:

  • No qualified Accountable Manager since July 19, 2013
  • Failure to check aircraft logs, flight manifest, weather, etc.
  • A mechanic failed to present his license to the CAAP inspector during a ramp inspection
  • Series of occurrences that affected several flight operations
  • Refueling with passenger on board involving an Airbus A320 (RP-C8989) on August 14, 2013
  • Excessive flight duty time case under the enforcement and legal service

Zest Air’s certificate to operate will remain suspended until the necessary corrective actions and compliance with aviation safety standards have been undertaken.

In a statement on it’s website, ZestAir stated: “All findings in CAAP’s letter have already been appropriately addressed and we believe that they do not merit suspension and grounding of our operations.”

The mechanic that failed to present his license did not have it on him, but had it “stored within the work area”, according to ZestAir. The airline also states that no “pilots or crew are exceeding their duty time limitations”.