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Jetstar Japan ordered to suspend expansion after safety reprimand

Updated with Jetstar response

Jetstar Japan is reported to have been required by the country’s aviation authority to suspend new flights due to begin this Thursday because of safety issues.

The brief story which broke in Japan this morning is published below:

TOKYO —Budget airline Jetstar Japan has been reprimanded by Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism for safety failings.

The reprimand was issued after it was revealed that Jetstar had employed mechanics who did not have the requisite experience and was relying on just two men to complete pre-flight safety checks, TBS reported.

As a result of the reprimand, the ministry says that the airline—which started domestic service in July—will suspend plans to begin flying new routes from Kansai International Airport from Nov 22. The ministry also said that Jetstar’s plans to increase flights between Kansai and Okinawa may be affected.

Jetstar has responded to the report with a statement describing the problem as being one arising from its failure to adhere to its own internal standards, which it says are higher than those set by regulation in Japan.

This statement is published below in full.

Jetstar Japan has received notification from the Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) in relation to a small number of issues within the airline’s internal engineering procedures.

None of these issues were in relation to safety but were focused on ensuring compliance with Jetstar Japan’s internal standards, which are set higher than the industry standard in Japan.

A small number of aircraft maintenance tasks were certified by two Jetstar Japan engineers that are approved to certify in accordance with Japanese regulatory standards, however Jetstar Japan’s internal standards require a longer period of previous experience to certify work.  All work certified by the engineers has been reviewed and no issues were found.  Jetstar Japan will work closely with the JCAB to address their concerns and ensure these incidents do not re-occur in the future.

Jetstar Japan will delay the commencement of one Osaka-Tokyo return service. Customers due to fly on these services will be offered alternative Jetstar flights or a full refund for their fare.  Accommodation will also be provided for passengers that require it.

 

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  • 1
    comet
    Posted November 18, 2012 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    A similar suspension of Jetstar should have happened in Australia long ago, but the minister deemed that third-world safety standards are quite OK in Australia.

  • 2
    Bill Parker
    Posted November 18, 2012 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

    Can anyone give me any reasons at all why I should choose Jetstar over QF and VA for cross country flights?

  • 3
    Aidan Stanger
    Posted November 19, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Bill Parker, do you really need to be told? The main reason is they’re cheaper. There may also be reasons of flight availability.

  • 4
    ltfisher
    Posted November 19, 2012 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

    No Aidan, Bill Parker should chose Jetstar ONLY if the service it is offering is of the same standard, convenience and cheaper.

  • 5
    Treenan
    Posted November 20, 2012 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    I’ve dealt with JCAB in the past. I can’t fault their efficiency, and willingness to ‘make things happen’. Compared with the bunch of incompetent wallies I’ve dealt with at CASA, they’re not even in the same game.

  • 6
    Aidan Stanger
    Posted November 20, 2012 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    No, Itfisher, it is not for you (nor me) to tell Bill when he should fly Jetstar. He just wanted to know the reasons why people do.

  • 7
    K L
    Posted December 17, 2012 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    What is alarming is that Jetstar says it had nothing to do with safety. Internal procedures relating to engineering (as well as flight ops) are there for safety, especially this kind of sign-off procedures.

    The fact that they do not consider it safety-related says a lot about Jetstar Japan and makes me think that the Japanese authority should come down more heavily on them.

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