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pcbm
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11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 12:14 pm

Eleven aircraft of British Airways (BA franchise Comair in South Africa) have been flying with components that should have been replaced in August last year.



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viasa
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11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 12:32 pm

We talk about Comair (from South Africa) and not from British Airways.

The story is a little bit confuse, because they says Just five of these BA aircraft – the older Boeing 737-400s and Boeing 737-300s, had been scheduled to fly on Saturday". Comair only operates B733s and B734s on the BA-flights.

And there were also the information in this report about B737-700. Comair has only B737-300s, B737-400s and B737-800s.
 
pcbm
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 1:05 pm

Aircraft are in full BA livery, crew in BA uniform and flights numbers are prefixed by "BA"
 
GDB
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 2:25 pm

Quoting pcbm (Reply 2):
Aircraft are in full BA livery, crew in BA uniform and flights numbers are prefixed by "BA"

But the maintenance of them is not connected with the BA mainline fleet, there are also 747-8F's flying around in BA livery yet BA Engineering have nothing to do with them either.

I'm in a position to know this, we've never had had any interaction with either Comair or those 747-8F's.
 
SpaceshipDC10
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 2:34 pm

Quoting pcbm (Reply 2):
Aircraft are in full BA livery, crew in BA uniform and flights numbers are prefixed by "BA"

Yes but operated by Comair Limited.



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OA260
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 2:36 pm

The new amended title represents the issue better. Although BA mainline have had their maintenance issues in the past this is nothing to do with them. One thing BA will want to do is make sure this thing does not happen in future and that they are closely monitoring the practises of their partners. Had there been an issue in flight or worse then the media would beam BA liveries across the globe and this is not something that BA need because one of their partners has abused the rules.
 
loalq
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 6:36 pm

Quoting GDB (Reply 3):
But the maintenance of them is not connected with the BA mainline fleet,

And that's the sad part of the story, because obviously that's not what they are somehow marketing to the general public with this operation. Unfortunately Comair is not obliged to stamp a big warning sign on their fleet saying "attention: this aircraft is not maintained by and does not follow the same maintenance standards as BA, despite we use their colors and uniforms"...
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EmiratesEK231
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 6:40 pm

I saw several of these aircraft on the ground when I was at CPT and JNB, last month. Those 737-400s looked so old and dilapidated compared to the new 737-800s I flew with Kulula.com. And the Mango -800s looked far better maintained, as compared to the BA jets, as well. Honestly, I felt much safer on the Kulula jets than I think I would have on the Comair/BA planes. I do remember vividly seeing the "Operated by Comair" promotions. but I'm sure it's not apparently obvious to most of the general public that BA does not directly oversee maintenance
I AM A NORTHWEST AIRLINES & EMIRATES LOVER! MY FAVORITE FLIGHTS HAVE BEEN ON THE 777, 727, DC-9, A320, AND 737.
 
GDB
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 6:54 pm

Quoting loalq (Reply 6):
And that's the sad part of the story, because obviously that's not what they are somehow marketing to the general public with this operation. Unfortunately Comair is not obliged to stamp a big warning sign on their fleet saying "attention: this aircraft is not maintained by and does not follow the same maintenance standards as BA, despite we use their colors and uniforms"...

Some have always thought that the whole franchising thing as potentially extra hazardous from a marketing/public perception point of view.
You have your brand all over an entity you don't control.
I'm not making assumptions about Comair for good or ill, just making a general point.

To me it's fairly obvious, self evident.
But I'm not one of those super-brains over in Waterside.
 
pcbm
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 6:56 pm

Kulula is also operated by Comair ....
 
EmiratesEK231
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:10 pm

Quoting pcbm (Reply 9):
Kulula is also operated by Comair ....

I am aware. However, I was flying on significantly newer -800 aircraft. The -400s looked really old and not attractive. I'm stating this from the "average person" side of me, and not the "more informed aviation enthusiast" side of me.
I AM A NORTHWEST AIRLINES & EMIRATES LOVER! MY FAVORITE FLIGHTS HAVE BEEN ON THE 777, 727, DC-9, A320, AND 737.
 
pfletch1228
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:31 pm

The comair fleet is maintained by SAA Technical, the same SAA Technical that maintains SAA Mainline and Mango's 737-800. Storm in a teacup. And yeah, the 733 and 734's are a bit clapped, but no more so than those (73 Classics) flying for BA mainline out of LGW.
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spitfire1963
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 8:01 pm

Hi,The issue relates to the spindles onthe flaps.They are supposed to be changed every 20 000 cycles or 6 years.The guys at SAA Tecnical who is responsible for maintenance checked on the cycles,but not the calender.So no big issue as the planes have not reached the cycles.But regulations are regulations.All planes spindles will be replaced by tonight and the birds back in the sky tommorrow.
 
DexSwart
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 9:45 pm

Comair has ordered brand new 737-800s to replace their entire fleet. Kulula has gotten the first of these.
BA and Comair extended their franchise agreement a few years ago, so "BA" will remain.
And luckily this issue got sorted out before anything bad happend.

And just on a side note, the new 737 have and will be getting the Sky Interior. Which is much better than SA's shoddy product on their A320s.
Durban. Melbourne. Denver. Hong Kong.
 
AIR MALTA
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 10:19 pm

All the ordered 738s will go to Kulula. BA Comair is yet to announce a Fleet renewal.
Next flights : BRU-ZRH-CAI (LX)/ BRU-FCO-TLV (AZ)
 
BA174
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Sun Aug 04, 2013 10:37 pm

Does anybody know what ZS-OTH (G-DOCK) is doing at Lasham? it's a long way from home or closer depending on which way you look at it. I would find it hard to believe they've ferried it all the way from JNB for a part out? Does BA mainline still own the 436s with Comair?

Hopefully if OTH does fly back it will get a repaint at LHR into the proper BA scheme, some of those Comair interpretations are interesting  
 
pfletch1228
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:38 am

Quoting DexSwart (Reply 13):
Comair has ordered brand new 737-800s to replace their entire fleet. Kulula has gotten the first of these.
BA and Comair extended their franchise agreement a few years ago, so "BA" will remain.
And luckily this issue got sorted out before anything bad happend.


The 738s are for Kulula, not for the BA brand.

Quoting DexSwart (Reply 13):


And just on a side note, the new 737 have and will be getting the Sky Interior. Which is much better than SA's shoddy product on their A320s.

I disagree. I was in the newly delivered A320 last Friday and its stunning inside, particularly the new business class section. Was nicer than anything Comair have to offer. I also got a glimpse of the new Mango product and its looking just as good as Kulula, and will have the added advantage that the product will be consistent, unlike Kulula which really is a hit an miss affair. If you get one of the leased birds (which are the majority) it can be really poor.
War does not determine who is right. War determines who is left.
 
boysteve
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:42 am

Quoting GDB (Reply 3):
But the maintenance of them is not connected with the BA mainline fleet, there are also 747-8F's flying around in BA livery yet BA Engineering have nothing to do with them either.

Yes, but as far as the general South African public are concerned this will damage the BA brand!
 
pcbm
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Mon Aug 05, 2013 10:04 am

The argument that BA "has nothing to do with the maintenance at Comair" does not hold water --- It is the same as saying McDonalds has nothing to do with the hygiene standards at one of their franchisees --- if something bad happens its BA in the press -- not Comair.
 
vv701
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Mon Aug 05, 2013 12:38 pm

Quoting BA174 (Reply 15):
Does anybody know what ZS-OTH (G-DOCK) is doing at Lasham? it's a long way from home or closer depending on which way you look at it. I would find it hard to believe they've ferried it all the way from JNB for a part out? Does BA mainline still own the 436s with Comair?

Previously other Comair 737s have visited QLA for heavy maintenance. For example 734 ZS-OAA arrived there on 24 August 2010 and ZS-OAP arrived there in Kulula livery on 11 April 2011. I assume that ZS-OTH that arrived at QLA on 7 June is there for the same reason.

ZS-OTH was bought by Safair Lease Finance of Johannesburg on 15 November 2002 and was leased by Comair on 17 November that year. None of Comair's aircraft are owned by BA. The other three ex-BA 734s operated by Comair are also on operational leases from Safair Lease Finance.
 
GDB
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Mon Aug 05, 2013 6:10 pm

Quoting pcbm (Reply 18):
The argument that BA "has nothing to do with the maintenance at Comair" does not hold water -

Yes it does, as has been explained, BA do not have any input into the maintenance of this airline's fleet.
The maintenance of highly sophisticated machines like modern airliners is rather more involved than what the bogs are like at a fast food outlet.
I agree it has the potential to be a PR negative for BA, so far it seems unreported in the UK.
Locally it might be a different story and I've expressed my views on the pitfalls of franchising.

However, look at it another way, have fatal accidents with commuter aircraft in the US, where the operator has been a franchise of a major carrier, with a similar livery, had a negative effect on that major carrier?
I'd imagine fatal accidents in the same country as the major would have way more potential for that?
 
sandyb123
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:22 pm

Quoting pfletch1228 (Reply 16):
I disagree. I was in the newly delivered A320 last Friday and its stunning inside, particularly the new business class section. Was nicer than anything Comair have to offer.

Does anyone have any photos of the new interior? I flew SAA 738 in J back in April JNB-CPT was quite nice considering the flight time and fare.

Sandyb123
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EmiratesEK231
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RE: 11 BA Comair Planes Grounded (South Africa)

Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:48 pm

Quoting pfletch1228 (Reply 16):
...unlike Kulula which really is a hit an miss affair. If you get one of the leased birds (which are the majority) it can be really poor.

It really is. Just came back from South Africa two weeks ago. While there, I had to fly from JNB to CPT, and then from CPT to JNB on the return leg. On the outbound flight, we got the 738 "This Way Up" aircraft, and its interior looked old and shabby. It was cloth seats and nothing to write home about. However, on the return leg, I was lucky to get the "Flying 101" aircraft and I was surprised to see the new interior with all-leather seating. It was a significant improvement from the first aircraft.

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