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Christopher Low

Campaign to return Concorde to the skies

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I thought that some of you guys might be interested to hear that there is a campaign to keep Concorde flying. The website is listed below:-www.saveconcorde.co.ukIt is significant to note that at least one Concorde engineer has signed the petition......

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Concorde needs your help, guys. Sign the petition at www.saveconcorde.co.uk, and help to get Concorde flying again !Chris Low.

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Chris, laudable as it is, and there are many of us within BAwho feel the same, the fact is that Airbus will not release the type cert data as long as there continues to be a French government involvement in Airbus,Air France and Aeroports de Paris.Ok you think whats' the connection? Well, basically the crash in 2000 at le Bourget was as a result of the unfortunate Concorde running over a piece of debris on the CDG runway,the debris should not have been there, Aeroports de Paris which runs CDG (owned by French Government) admitted not carrying out a scheduled sweep of the runway, thus it was responsible for the crash, not the Concorde design. However they (sic) quickly realised that any lawsuits arising could be deflected easily if a 30 yr old design 'not up to modern standards' was blamed and thus Concorde was grounded. Once some Concordes had been modified that excuse fades into irrelevance if there is any future occurrence, and both Air France (62% owned by french government, and Airbus (50% owned by French government) would be able to be lawsuit-able.See where we're going with this? Good.Post 9/11 as its now known, Air France is in severe financial straights,like most other airlines, and gets a 'handout' from the french government, illegal under european law, but the french government ignore that as always.The first Le Bourget crash lawsuit court hearings are imminent and the french government decides it can't afford to be sued on multiple responsibilities, owning Air France (the operator),Aeroports de Paris (the negligent party), and Airbus (responsible for the Airworthiness of Concorde),and continue to prop up Air France... So it tells Air France to stop operating them to save money. However, as a joint project originally, the ultimate decision has also got to come from the UK part of the deal too, thats' where Airbus comes in, Bae, having passed all of its remaining commercial aeroplane intereststo its Airbus division,now a separate entity, says the decision is down to Airbus,which having been 'leant on' by the french governmentagrees to pull the type cert and 'sit' on the data ad-infinitum. Finally,BA is not 'the bad boy' here,feasability studies were made into BA holding its' own airworthiness authority for Concorde,but Airbus would not 'play ball' and refused to release the data.All of the foregoing is 'IMHO', but based on various facts,events and circumstances which have been widely reported in thevarious national and specialist media.To put it simply, pulling an aircrafts type cert is the easiest wayof grounding an entire fleet.The comparison with Vulcan XH558 is not valid,as a military plane the Vulcan never had a civilian type cert,(it just had the military Controller Aircraft release) thus it can be legally given a C of A in the special or permit to fly category based upon the competence of those operating and maintaining it, to be able to do it safely and within the rules laid down by CAA/JAA,in partnership with a delegated design authority.Concorde(s) on the other hand, already have their C of A in the air transport category,and as such HAVE to be operated and maintained to those standards,whilst it is possible to 'downgrade' the aircrafts' C of A category, the need for a delegated design authority remains,whichtakes us back to Airbus again, they HAVE the data, they REFUSE to release it to any other 'interested party'.And finally, once you downgrade the C of A category, you can no longer fly passengers (of any sort, fare paying or not) on-board.(If I remember the wording correctly,the plane can only carry operating flight crew and other persons necessary for the safe operation of the flight)Sorry for the long post. Hope it explains things better for you all.:-wavePete

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