Idiot/Savant doesn’t like the idea of Europeans flying in volcanic ash.
Iceland’s revenge has been smothering Europe for almost a week now, and the airline industry is reportedly losing $280 million a day. Naturally, they’re keen to stop losing money, so today saw some carefully staged test flights, followed by stock declarations that the planes were not damaged and everything was fine. The message is clear: the European airline industry wants to be rid of “silly” flight restrictions.
Indeed, we all want to be rid of restrictions, if indeed they are silly. It must be remembered that there has been no research at all into the effects of flying aircraft in the level of ash currently over Europe.
But this is a real problem – take a look at these photos of what the ash did to the innards of a Finnish airforce jet’s engines. If they start flying again, the risks of an accident will significantly increase….
But the risk of accidents are only part of the reasons for flight restrictions. In the Indonesian case, once the engines stopped taking in ash, they (3 out of 4) were able to restart and land the aircraft. But the aircraft was written off.
That’s a significant risk of crashing, but it’s a certainty of damaging the aircraft.
…The airlines don’t care about that, because they’re insured – insured for the cost of replacing the plane, and insured for the cost of compensating the relatives of dead passengers. And so they’re willing to gamble with their passenger’s lives in order to avoid going out of business.
But while airlines might be insured against crashes, damage to engines is going to vastly increase uninsured maintenance costs long before any aircraft are badly damaged enough to crash.
In other words, profitability will be affected long before serious risks to safety develop. They might be putting profits before people, but damaging expensive aircraft engines “for profit” is nonsensical.
Preventing this sort of corporate sociopathy is exactly why we have government.
Now, I agree with Idiot that flying in significant ash is stupid and is going to kill people. And airlines are going to push their own self interest. But as I’ve pointed out, airlines interests are aligned with safety in this instance. No matter how much they might spin to the public, they simply have no interest in conducting high-maintenance, loss producing flights.
But people know the potential risks (it’s been all over the news for days for Pete’s sake), and if they wish to be 100% safe they have no obligation whatsoever to step into an aircraft.
In other words, he considers the flying public as to be morons.