Emergency standby for Saab trial flight

Emergency crews were put on standby after Cayman Airways’ new Saab plane reported an issue during a trial flight on Saturday. 

Senior staff from the airline, including CEO Fabian Whorms, and Civil Aviation Authority officials were on board during the flight between Cayman Brac and Grand Cayman. 

The plane has yet to be put in service on the Brac commuter route and is going through a final round of demonstration flights under observation from civil aviation regulators. 

Mr. Whorms said there was a false indication of an issue with the landing gear. He said emergency crews had been put on standby as a precaution and the plane landed safely. 

“An indication issue was encountered when the landing gears were selected by the flight deck crew to the down position, for landing. 

“Alternate procedures confirmed that the gears were extended and locked for a landing, but the captain requested the emergency services to be on stand-by, as a procedurally required precautionary measure.” 

He said the aircraft had been removed from service for “rectification work” with further trial flights expected to continue later this week. 

He said staff had already completed all the certification and approvals processes necessary to operate the new Saab 340B+ craft which will run on the Brac express route. 

He said the flights currently taking place were for trial and demonstration purposes, to ensure flight and ground operations staff are fully proficient before it begins transporting paying passengers. 

With the exception of Saturday’s incident, he said the trial flights had gone “extremely well” so far. 

The new Cayman Airways Saab 340B+. - PHOTO: CHARLES DUNCAN

The new Cayman Airways Saab 340B+. – PHOTO: CHARLES DUNCAN