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Cubana Maintenance - How Safe Are They?  
User currently offlineAkjetBlue From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 790 posts, RR: 5
Posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 7091 times:

http://www.nocastro.com/gallery/plane.gif


Save a horse! Ride a Cowboy!
25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAfay1 From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 1293 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 7076 times:

I am unfamiliar with Cubana's maintenance programs, but one could find a similar picture for most of the major airlines of the world...so what's the point of putting in the link?

User currently offlineAkjetBlue From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 790 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 7069 times:


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Photo © Propfreak



This better?

[Edited 2005-05-25 03:06:34]

What I meant was, does anyone have any knowledge of how well CU MX is in HAV, i.e. Do they provide contract MX for OAL at HAV? etc. The pic caught my eye, cause it crashed after 2 aborted take-offs

[Edited 2005-05-25 03:09:07]


Save a horse! Ride a Cowboy!
User currently offlineNAVEGA From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 741 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 6989 times:

AkjetBLUE,

All I can tell you is that I would probably never fly on Cubana based on their
safety record.


User currently offlineCubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 22877 posts, RR: 20
Reply 4, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 6965 times:

www.nocastro.com? That's a reliable site...


I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
User currently offlineJetdeltamsy From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 2987 posts, RR: 8
Reply 5, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 6942 times:

Are they safe? Who knows. The fact is, however, that they have one of the highest incident rates in the world.

Proceed with caution.



Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
User currently offlineTACAA320 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 6936 times:

I dont have any doubt about the safety of this aircraft>>>>>>>


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Photo © Peter Tsagaris - CYOW Airport Watch



User currently offlinePPVRA From Brazil, joined Nov 2004, 8958 posts, RR: 40
Reply 7, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 6917 times:

Quoting Jetdeltamsy (Reply 5):
Proceed with caution.

Good piece of advice. From just seeing their planes at GRU sometime ago, they gave me a not so good impression. A friend of mine flew with them to HAV once, pretty much told me he did not feel comfortable/safe the entire duration of the flight.

But that's just my 2 cents

PPVRA



"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
User currently offlinePlanenutz From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (9 years 3 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 6845 times:

A good refernce for this question would be the Cubana World Air Routes DVD offered through .

An entire chapter is dedicated to CU's maintenance operations at HAV. Granted the piece is narrated by the CU maintenance director, so you have take whats said with a grain of salt, but they appear to be able to get the job done. According to him, all heavy maintenance on CU owned aircraft are done a thier HAV maintenace hangar. Additionaly they do provide contract maintenance, and at the time were working on a Gambia registered IL-62 and a Canadian registered 727.

One of the flight segmentss covered on the DVD is with an IL-62 HAV-BOG. One thing thats very obvious is that the flight deck equipment is OLD. The only modern piece of equipment appears to be the haphazardly installed GPS system. The radar is antiquated, and there's no onbaord computer, so the crew uses paper nav maps, and has to calculate fuel, weight and balance, etc. by hand using a calculator. I find is nearly impossible for CU to make any money using the IL-62. It takes four people to fly the plane: pilot, first officer, flight engineer, and navigator, and its notorius for its high level of fuell burn.

What's impressive though is the inflight meal service. Full meals with free alcohol on relatively short flights such as HAV-BOG (2hr 50min), and SJO-HAV (2hr 40min). Although when they check out the galley, it appears that CU has pilfered a lot of catering implements (pitchers, glassware) from AOM as these things had the AOM logo.


User currently offlineAifos From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 61 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 6742 times:

Akjetblue, A source found on nocastro.com?!??!?
How about writing a thesis on the work of the US army in Irak thanks to the files provided by the Pentagon?!?!

I have been to Cuba 5 times (have also a European passport), flew with Cubana twice. Service was decent, plane well maintained.

Only people with previous travel experience with Cubana should be able to comment.

By the way if you have never traveled to this beautiful island, you don't know what you miss... People are wonderful and generous.



AA Ex. Platinium
User currently offlineCarmenlu15 From Guatemala, joined Dec 2004, 4757 posts, RR: 31
Reply 10, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 6601 times:

I remember that incident from an air emergency course... Takeoff was aborted because one of the engines wasn't working, so they had the flight engineer get off the plane and hit the engine with a hammer to make it start. Once working, the plane went down the runway, going faster and faster, preparing to take off... which did not happen.

More info: http://www.airdisaster.com/cgi-bin/v...U-T1264&airline=Cubana+de+Aviacion
http://www.latinamericanstudies.org/cuba/cubana2.htm



What do I know, I'm just an 'immature troublemaker with only a passing interest in aviation' (or so they say)
User currently offlineTimeForFlight From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 267 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 6545 times:

Quoting Aifos (Reply 9):
By the way if you have never traveled to this beautiful island, you don't know what you miss... People are wonderful and generous.

You couldn't be more correct! It's an amazing nation with amazing people! It's sad that most US citizens think it's a horrible place - they've never heard a thing about the island other than the fact there's an embargo and Castro is the leader! I had the priviledge of hearing Castro speak for 3.5 hours 18 months ago and while I don't agree with him on everything, I can guarantee you he's smarter than most US politicians.

As far as Cubana goes - I doubt Castro would let the airline fly if it was unsafe. After all, it is many travellers' first impression of Cuba.


User currently offlineBullpitt From Spain, joined Mar 2004, 871 posts, RR: 8
Reply 12, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 6510 times:

Does anyone know what Cubanas safety record is? Seems to me everyone is talking about something they have not really looked at.

When was their last accident with victims?

Can someone compare their record with a similar sized carrier?

We might see some surprises?

By the way I haven't been there yet but hope to do so soon.



These are my principles but if you don't like them I have others
User currently offlineFLY2LIM From United States of America, joined May 2004, 1184 posts, RR: 10
Reply 13, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 6496 times:

Quoting TimeForFlight (Reply 11):
You couldn't be more correct! It's an amazing nation with amazing people! It's sad that most US citizens think it's a horrible place - they've never heard a thing about the island other than the fact there's an embargo and Castro is the leader! I had the privilege of hearing Castro speak for 3.5 hours 18 months ago and while I don't agree with him on everything, I can guarantee you he's smarter than most US politicians.

Who couldn't be more correct about what? This "amazing nation" is one where you are not free to choose anything about your life. You work for the people, a concept called "communism". Most US citizens don't think it's a horrible place. But it is a place that US citizens are not ALLOWED to visit.
Fidel Castro is a communist who is also one of the richest men in the world. That alone is a contradiction in terms. He has taken this wealth from the coffers in his country. He is smart, for sure. He has figured out a way to oppress millions of people for his own personal gain.
One thing I dislike more is the American who has visited Cuba once or twice and now considers him/herself an authority on the country. The sad truth about Cuba is that visitors are restricted as to what they can and cannot see. The "party" controls everything and it's a place that's filled with corruption, graft, and bureaucracy. People here call W a "dictator" but they have no idea what a real dictator is. By the way, I dislike W but even he is wonderful compared to a dictator. Would any American want to go live there under the current conditions and be told what to say, what to think, where to work, and how to live? I think not.
So, I have never visited Cuba. However, I have spoken to expatriates who have lived and done business there. I have also talked to people who have visited the island. I have also lived in a country run by a military dictatorship. There is a reason why there are only a couple of those left in the world. Communism does not work. Finally, I also have a passport that would allow me entry into Cuba with no questions, but I choose not to visit. To me, visiting Cuba and bringing my foreign money only helps one person and further punishes the innocent citizens of that country.
Besides my own personal opinion of the country, I would never fly Cubana because of their tarnished safety record, well documented in history.
FLY2LIM



Faucett. La primera linea aerea del Peru.
User currently offlineLPLAspotter From Portugal, joined Jan 2005, 682 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 6459 times:

Quoting FLY2LIM (Reply 13):
Who couldn't be more correct about what? This "amazing nation" is one where you are not free to choose anything about your life. You work for the people, a concept called "communism". Most US citizens don't think it's a horrible place. But it is a place that US citizens are not ALLOWED to visit.

I could never understand this. US citizens are free to travel to communist countries like China, Vietnam, Laos, etc.. What's the big deal with Cuba? I guess this question is not appropriate in the civil aviation forum, but somebody else started it and I'd like to hear some opinions.



Nuke the Gay Wales for Christ
User currently offlineBullpitt From Spain, joined Mar 2004, 871 posts, RR: 8
Reply 15, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 6445 times:

Very interesting FLY2LIM, you live in a country where your not ALLOWED to visit Cuba. That's very democratic. As I said before thank god I live in one of the few free countries left in the world.  biggrin 

Cuba is a small country fighting for its dignity against an unjust neighbour who has never doubted in using even terrorism to put it on her knees. Let's not forget that the USA has and still protects a man accused of placing a bomb in a cubana flight that caused 73 dead. A man financed and supported by the CIA.



These are my principles but if you don't like them I have others
User currently offlineB744F From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 6432 times:

Cuba doesn't have oil and cheap labor can be found in said other "good" communist countries, so the ban will not be lifted. Oh and a few American corporations are still upset about their assets being seized during the revolution.

User currently offlineKatekebo From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 704 posts, RR: 6
Reply 17, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6395 times:

Back to safety question. Accordingly to airdisaster.com:

Cubana: 8 events (accidents with fatalities) in 0.33 million cycles (flights), which result in an accident rate of 24 events per million cycles.

US/Canada average is approx. 0.5 events per million cycles
Latin America / Caribbean average is approx. 1.5 events per million cycles
Europe is approx. 1.0

Cubana has the worst rate among all major airlines, followed by Aeroperu with 16.7 events per million cycles and Air Zimbabwe with 12.5 events per million cycles.

While this statistics do not tell 100% of the story, it's clear that Cubana safety performance is far from stellar.

Finally, regarding Bullpit's (nice nickname) comment that USA is protecting Luis Posada - this is not entirely true. He has been arrested recently on immigration violations and US authorities are considering his deportation to Venezuela (Cuba's best friend) where he is wanted in relation to bombing of the Cubana airplane.


User currently offlineAvek00 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 4368 posts, RR: 19
Reply 18, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6385 times:

Well, Cubana is as safe as any airline that has zero access to the established aviation maintenace regimes of the world - which is to say, not very.


Live life to the fullest.
User currently offlineBennett123 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2004, 7529 posts, RR: 3
Reply 19, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 6360 times:

I thought that the US had ruled out sending him to Venezuela.

As for Cubana, I suggest www.aviation-safety.net


User currently offlineLVZXV From Gabon, joined Mar 2004, 2041 posts, RR: 37
Reply 20, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 6348 times:

An interesting if overly politicised discussion. I have a few points to make, before which I'd like to clarify that I am not Cuban, have not visited the island, and do not have an axe to grind against the US as a country.

Statistically yes, Cubana do not have a good record. However, one thing I've noticed with airlines around the world is that sometimes a record is just that: a record. Think of how "unsafe" airlines like China Airlines or Korean Air became based on their poor records during the '90s, yet they have since improved and people still fly on them en masse. Talk about unsafe, think about the American DC-10 crash in Chicago exactly 26 years ago, or the terrifying maintenance practices of Alaska airlines which brought down one of their MD-83s in such horrific circumstances. Are there passenger numbers down for any other reason than the current global aviation crisis? No.

1998 was a terrible year for Cubana, I won't argue with that. The Tu-154 should have never left the ground at Quito for one thing, and four months later Cubana became one of the few airlines to lose two aircraft in less than a week.

But they responded to those disasters. Their remaining Tu-154s were retired soon thereafter, as were their Yak-40s. I cannot remember the last time they lost an Il-62 or Yak-42, the mainstays of their current fleet, or even an An-24 for that matter. I do not know what goes on in Cubana's hangars these days, but for the most part, they seem to be flying safely.

I do know some people who have flown Cubana in recent years who claimed they have never been so terrified in all their lives, but something I've noticed is that almost any Westerner finds at least their first couple of flights aboard a Russian aircraft a little unnerving to say the least.

Although a different kettle of fish, my father flies a Yak-52, and I can assure you, it is not a gentle plane. If you're used to Cessnas, Pipers or what have you, the Yak will certainly get your adrenal glands pumping! I'd imagine the difference between an A320 and an Il-62 is much the same.

And it is true, since the collapse of the USSR, spare parts for Russian aircraft are neither as abundant nor readily available as they used to be. Aeronica found it impossible to maintain their Tupolevs after the Cold War ended, and of all countries, Peru has probably suffered the biggest headaches in terms of maintaining Russian aircraft, of which their Armed Forces are largely comprised.

I don't really want to delve into the political differences between Cuba and the US any more than I want to bring up the Basque conflict among Basques and Spaniards. And I don't think that any of you, irrespective of your nationality or political leaning, need reminding that things are never black or white.

Saludos,

ZXV



How do you say "12 months" in Estonian?
User currently offlineLatinplane From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 2716 posts, RR: 14
Reply 21, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 6286 times:

It is worth mentioning that Cubana's maintenance is handled by Cubana's subsidiary IBECA, which is a company that is 50/50 owned by Iberia and Cubana de Aviacion. They can handle maintenace on all Boeing aircraft as well as A320s, A330s, and A340s. IBECA is certified by the EASA, The European Aviation Safety Agency to handle third party work.



http://www.cubana.cu/html/espanol/centroMantenimiento_e01.html


 Smile LatinPlane


User currently offlineLuisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2571 posts, RR: 31
Reply 22, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 6259 times:

Cubana flies a couple of times a week between HAV and CCS. Since 1999 there has been 2 crashes. A YAK-42 crashed on Dec 1999 while on approach to Valencia (diverted to VLN because CCS was closed down because of floods surrounding CCS), all dead.

On march 2005 an IL-18 crashed after an aborted take off. This time thank god no one died. Route was CCS-HAV.

A carrier that flies less than daily to CCS and has had 2 crashes in 5 years, doesn't sound safe to me.


User currently offlineLPLAspotter From Portugal, joined Jan 2005, 682 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (9 years 3 months 1 day ago) and read 6165 times:

Quoting LVZXV (Reply 20):
my father flies a Yak-52

I liked your post-interesting. However, did you mean Yak-42? I don't mean to be picky, but I really want to understand everything. What airline does your father work for?
LPLAspotter



Nuke the Gay Wales for Christ
User currently offlineLVZXV From Gabon, joined Mar 2004, 2041 posts, RR: 37
Reply 24, posted (9 years 3 months 23 hours ago) and read 6128 times:

Quoting LPLAspotter (Reply 23):
I liked your post-interesting. However, did you mean Yak-42? I don't mean to be picky, but I really want to understand everything. What airline does your father work for?

Thanks! My father's not particularly fond of level flight, hence the Yak he flies is indeed a -52, identical to this one:


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Photo © Marc Michel



Saludos,

ZXV



How do you say "12 months" in Estonian?
User currently offlinePe@rson From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 19205 posts, RR: 52
Reply 25, posted (9 years 3 months 23 hours ago) and read 6109 times:

I wouldn't think twice about flying them. Is there a better way to die?  Wink Just joking. I would not worry at all.


"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
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