Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Precision Air Services orders ATRs

Neelam Mathews
Dec 21, 2011
Tanzanian carrier Precision Air Services and ATR have signed a contract for the purchase of four ATR 42-600s and one ATR 72-600 aircraft. The deal is valued at $98 million. Delivery of the 50-seat ATR 42-600s will start in late 2012. The ATR 72-600 will be delivered in 2014. 

With this acquisition, Precision Air Services will bring its fleet of ATRs up to 14 aircraft, tbecoming the largest operator of ATR aircraft in Africa. The current fleet of ATRs of Precision Air Services includes 5 ATR 72-500s, 2 ATR 42-500s and 2 ATR 42-300s. 

With the introduction of these 5 brand new ATR ‘-600 series’ aircraft, the carrier will further develop its regional network, adding new routes and frequencies to its domestic market. This fleet expansion will allow the airline to offer its passengers the advantages and comfort of the new ATR -600 series ‘Armonia’ cabin. 

 Michael Shirima, the Board of Directors Chairman of Precision Air Services said: “We have been operating ATR aircraft for years, and we are totally convinced of their suitability for our regional routes. The ATRs are perfectly adapted to the hot climate in Africa, and feature optimal performance in smaller airfields and unpaved runways. Also, they provide us the lowest operating costs, thus strongly contributing to the development of regional aviation in our country”.

 ATR and Precision Air Services set up in 2006 a joint-partnership for certified aeronautical maintenance training for some selected Tanzanian students. Each student spends three years being trained at the Aeronautical Technical School in Toulouse, France, and then joins Precision Air Services’ maintenance crew in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. So far, 12 students have already completed their training and joined the airline. Other additional 24 students are currently being trained or programmed in the coming years. 

ATR has 110 aircraft in operation and on order with African and Middle East carriers and is established in 25 countries of the region. 

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