Thursday, February 23, 2017

ATR opens first Americas-based -600 series training center in Miami

Turboprop manufacturer ATR opened its first pilot training center in the Americas Feb. 21, with the debut of a new CAE-built full flight simulator (FFS) for ATR-600 series aircraft.

ATR’s Miami, Florida facility, which is located at Airbus’ existing training center adjacent to Miami International Airport, is ATR’s fifth training center worldwide and the first aimed specifically at pilots in Latin America and North America.

“The training center in Miami is a natural step in our aim of being as close as possible to our operators in the region, and [is] a strategic move to re-enter the US market,” ATR CEO Christian Scherer said.

“The other day I was [at] … our Singapore training facility and I walked by the simulator there and I see ‘in use by Bahamasair’—in Singapore. Now that doesn’t work,” Scherer told attendees at the FFS unveiling ceremony in Miami. “ATR is a global company. It has 200 operators flying 1,100-plus airplanes around the world in over 100 countries. We owe it to our customers to be present in every continent … now we’ve ticked the American continent, with the unveiling of this simulator… ATR is currently training about 3,500 pilots per year. With this facility, we can go up to something close to 4,000 pilots per year.”

ATR also has additional training facilities in Paris, Singapore, Johannesburg and at the company’s home base in Toulouse, France. ATR is co-owned by Airbus and Italian defense/aerospace company Leonardo (formerly Finmeccanica).

ATR’s fleet operating among Latin American and Caribbean carriers has doubled within the past decade, the company said, with the number of ATR-600s expected to exceed 100 aircraft by 2020. In 2016, 23 ATR-600s were ordered by Latin American customers (Argentina’s Avian Líneas Aéreas ordered 12 of the type; Brazil’s Azul ordered five; Mexico’s Aeromar ordered six).

The manufacturer delivered 80 aircraft in 2016 and 88 in 2015. Major 72-600 deliveries in 2016 included nine to Indonesia’s Lion Air, seven to Swedish regional carrier BRA, five to Air New Zealand, three to Binter Canarias, among others.

(Mark Nensel - ATWOnline News)

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