Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Air India Awards Contract To PanAm International Flight Academy

AWIN First Mar 01 , 2011
Neelam Mathews 


PanAm International Flight Academy has been awarded an approximately $5 million contract by Air India that includes training for 255 Boeing 737 pilots and 95 777 pilots.

The training will take place in Miami, according to Gregory Darrow, senior director of sales for PanAm.

PanAm is also looking at exploring the possibility of opening a training center in India, not just for Air India’s training needs, but for all of the Indian commercial aviation community, says Darrow. A paucity of trained airline pilots in India following increases in fleet sizes is hurting airlines such as Air India with a large training backlog of both pilots and flight attendants. Air India currently utilizes foreign pilots to cover some of its flying, and has had to cancel flights due to a lack of qualified crew members.

The agreement with Air India is meant to assist the airline with clearing its backlog, says Darrow.

Crew training for current staff not qualified, as well as replacement of Indian pilots for the 100 ex-pats currently flying for Air India, will take place in PanAm’s facilities and flight simulators in the U.S.

PanAm also will provide line training instructors to complete the pilot training in Air India aircraft once the pilots return to India. In addition, cabin crew instructors will be trained in India to train Air India’s new hire cabin crews and cabin crew instructors.

Air India recently hired 350 new flight attendants and has plans to hire an additional 400.

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