|This article's factual accuracy may be compromised due to out-of-date information. (September 2011)|
|Headquarters||Burbank, California, USA|
|Key people||Gary Richards (President)|
Ameriflight LLC is an American cargo airline with its headquarters in Hangar 1 on the grounds of Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, California. It is the largest United States FAA Part 135 cargo carrier, operating scheduled and contract cargo services to destinations in 30 US states, Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean. Ameriflight serves major financial institutions, freight forwarders, laboratories and overnight couriers in the USA and provides feeder services for overnight express carriers nationwide and internationally. Ameriflight has about 600 employees.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (September 2011)|
Ameriflight was established in 1968 as California Air Charter. It merged in 1971 with United Couriers (UCI), a wholly owned subsidiary of ATI Systems International (ATIS). In April 1993 the fixed-wing division of Wings Express (which was based at Van Nuys Airport) was purchased, and the outstanding shares of Sports Air Travel were acquired in mid-1997. In March 2007, when Canadian company Garda Security bought ATIS, Ameriflight was sold to a group of investors including the company's president, Gary Richards.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (September 2011)|
The majority of Ameriflight's operations consists of air feeder service for major package express integrators such as UPS, FedEx, and DHL. On schedules set by the customers, cargo is received in the early morning from large jet freighters at hub airports and distributed by Ameriflight airplanes to smaller communities whose traffic (or airports) would not support the big airplanes. In the evening, the Ameriflight aircraft fly back to the hubs, in order to feed them with cargo from the smaller communities, which is carried onwards to the integrators' distribution centers for sorting and redistribution to the ultimate destinations.
Although demand is decreasing as use of digital imaging and electronic data transfer increases, Ameriflight also transports high priority intercity financial documents. Pharmaceuticals, film for development, medical laboratory samples, and other miscellaneous cargo are also carried.
Ameriflight is one of the few Part 135 cargo carriers in the U.S. with a special Department of Transportation permit to carry high Transport Index radioactive cargo, an important element in the company's time-critical radioactive medical raw materials business which transports radioactive "generator" materials between points of manufacture and cities where it is used to produce materials used in diagnostics and cancer therapy.
In addition to scheduled flying (with contract schedules set by customers) all Ameriflight bases can respond to unscheduled on-demand cargo flights to destinations in Alaska, Canada, throughout the conterminous U.S., Mexico, the Caribbean, and into South America. A single King Air 200 is used for on-demand passenger charter flights.
Main bases and hubs
- United States
- Arizona: Phoenix (Sky Harbor International Airport)
- California: Hayward (Hayward Executive Airport) and Ontario (Ontario International Airport)
- Florida: Miami (Miami International Airport)
- Montana: Billings (Billings Logan International Airport) (maintenance only)
- Nebraska: Omaha (Eppley Airfield)
- New York: Buffalo (Buffalo Niagara International Airport)
- Ohio / Kentucky: Cincinnati (Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport) and (only for maintenance) Louisville (Louisville International Airport)
- Oregon: Portland (Portland International Airport)
- Texas: Dallas-Fort Worth (Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport)
- Utah: Salt Lake City (Salt Lake City International Airport)
- Washington: Seattle (Boeing Field)
- Puerto Rico
(As of early 2013; all aircraft are "straight freighters" except as noted) Piper PA-31 Chieftain - 31; Beech 99 - 57; Beech 1900 - 24; Beech King Air 200 - 1 (passenger configuration); Fairchild Metro III and Expediter—46; Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia - 8; Fleet total - 167
In previous times, the airline operated the following aircraft types:Cessna 402, Cessna 208 Caravan, Dassault Falcon 20, de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter, Learjet 35A, Mitsubishi MU-2, Piper PA-32R, Piper PA-32, Piper PA-28R, Piper PA-23 and Piper PA-31T Cheyenne.
Accidents and incidents
- On November 16, 1994 at 02:40 local time, the pilot of an Ameriflight Beechcraft Model 99 (registered N63995) on a cargo flight from Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport to Oakland International Airport lost control of the aircraft near Avenal and was killed in the subsequent crash, the reason for which could not be determined.
- On August 13, 1997 Flight 262 from Portland to Seattle, which was operated using a Beechcraft 1900 (registered N3172A) was damaged in a crash landing at Seattle–Tacoma International Airport and destroyed in a fire that had erupted from spilled fuel. Investigation into the accident determined that the airpane had been overloaded and that the pilot had been misinformed by staff members of Ameriflight about the center of gravity, which led to an unexpected flying behavior upon landing and a resulting stall situation.
- On February 12, 1999 at around 10:30 local time, Beechcraft C99 (registered N205RA) crashed into a canyon of the White Mountains, while en route a positioning flight from Tonopah Airport to Bishop Airport. The wreckage could only be recovered two days later. According to relatives and witnesses, the pilot (who was killed in the crash) had been trying to take aerial pictures of the local scenery when he lost control of the aircraft.
- On November 29, 2003 at 08:01 local time, Flight 1966 from Boeing Field crashed into trees in bad visibility conditions whilst approaching its destination Felts Field, by which the pilot was killed. The aircraft involved, a Swearingen Merlin registered N439AF, had only one working ILS receiver at the time of the accident, which delivered unreliable data, so that the pilot had been descending too rapidly.
- On March 18, 2006, Flight 2591, a Beechcraft Model 99 (registered N54RP) crashed during a flight from Helena to Butte in Montana about 8.1 miles South West of its destination, killing the two pilots on board. The plane impacted trees and mountainous terrain, where the wreckage could only be located on March 20. The cause of the crash was determined to be the pilot's failure to follow the proper instrument approach procedure.
- On December 17, 2007, the Beechcraft Model 99 (registered N206AV) that was operating as Flight 4844 landed short of the runway at Vernal Regional Airport in low visibility conditions, during which the aircraft was considerably damaged.
- On September 22, 2009, an Ameriflight Fairchild Merlin IV-C sustained substantial damage to its nose and forward pressure bulkhead at Eppley Airfield, when another company's Cessna 402 collided with the parked plane.
- On November 4, 2009 at 07:50 local time, a Beechcraft Model 99 (registered N330AV) suffered a bird strike when approaching Show Low Regional Airport following a cargo flight from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. A Western Grebe impacted and penetrated the left pilot side of the flight deck windscreen, striking and injuring the single pilot. The impact left an 11 inch by 8 inch hole in the windscreen. The pilot was able to continue the approach and land without further incident.
- On January 6, 2010 at 07:41 local time, a Beechcraft Model 99 (registered N206AV) was damaged in a hard landing at Kearney Regional Airport following a cargo flight from Omaha. The aircraft had behaved unexpectedly because of icing that had built up on the wings.
- On March 10, 2011, Flight 1951, a Fairchild Swearingen Metroliner, slid off the runway and onto the grass at Boeing Field in Seattle when completing a flight from Nez Perce County Airport. Preliminary reports indicated a landing gear problem, but there were also difficult wind shear conditions at the time of the accident. The single pilot of the airplane was uninjured.
- "Contact Us." Ameriflight. Retrieved on January 5, 2009.
- "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 2007-03-27. p. 75.
- Airline Pilot Central
- Ameriflight 1994 crash at the Aviation Safety Network
- 1997 accident at the Aviation Safety Network
- 1999 crash at the Aviation Safety Network
- 2003 accident at the Aviation Safety Network
- "Accident Description, Ameriflight 2591." Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved on June 12, 2011.
- "NTSB Report SEA06FA068 - 03/18/2009." National Transportation Safety Board. Retrieved on June 12, 2011.
- 2007 incident at the Aviation Safety Network
- "NTSB Report CEN09CA600 - 09/22/2009." National Transportation Safety Board. Retrieved on June 12, 2011.
- "NTSB Report WPR10IA045 - 11/04/2009." National Transportation Safety Board. Retrieved on June 12, 2011.
- Plane lands near Show Low after bird strike." The Arizona Republic. Retrieved on June 12, 2011.
- 2010 Incident at the Aviation Safety Network
- "Cargo plane slides off runway at Boeing Field." Seattle Times. Retrieved on June 12, 2011.
- "AMF1951 Flight History 03/11/2011." FlightAware.com. Retrieved on June 12, 2011.
- "NTSB Report WPR11FA159 - 03/10/2011." National Transportation Safety Board. Retrieved on June 12, 2011.
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