Pilots accuse KQ of running afoul aircraft maintenance laws

Kenya Airways (KQ) pilots have accused the airline of breaching the aviation industry laws that guide airlines on aircraft maintenance.

Under the aegis of the Kenya Airlines Pilots Association (Kalpa), the pilots said the national carrier was allocating them tasks meant for engineers without the approval of the aviation industry regulator and which go against the Civil Aviation Act.

Referred to as “crew concept”, Kalpa said pilots had been tasked with administering checks on aircraft before they embark on flights. It added that while it is standard procedure for pilots to go through the checklists and ensure the aircraft are fine, KQ is yet to receive the green light for the crew concept by the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA).

The lobby directed its members to stop the exercise and only accept to fly aircraft that have been cleared by engineers.

“Kalpa’s concerns on the crew concept procedure include the operation involving the release of aircraft without all sections of the technical logbook being filled, including flight certification. This is in direct contravention of Regulation 75 of the Civil Aviation (operation of Aircraft for Commercial Air Transport) Regulations, 2018,” said Kalpa in a letter to KQ management.

The association directed its members to stop carrying out the procedures and instead let engineers handle their bit in clearing aircraft for take-off, which could portend another crisis for the airline that is already at loggerheads with the pilots over a disputed collective bargaining agreement.

“With immediate effect, Kalpa members will no longer comply with the crew concept procedure,” said the lobby.

“Kalpa members will only accept aircraft whose sections of the technical log page that required to be filled or endorsed are completed accordingly by dispatching engineer, as prescribed by the law.”