Are Planes Safe – level 3
Regulators, insurers, and experts are warning airlines to take extra care when reactivating planes that were left in extended storage during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The sudden fall in global air travel meant that an unprecedented number of planes had to be parked on runways. At one point, two thirds of the global fleet were put on the ground. Now, as planes are returning to the skies, regulators worry about maintenance errors, pilots being out of practice, and even insect nests blocking key sensors.
This year, there’s been a sharp rise in the number of poor landings, and some of them resulted in crashes. According to European regulators, this year has also seen an alarming rise in incidents involving wrong air speed or altitude readings. Long periods out of service also raise worries, including contaminated fuel and drained batteries in emergency systems.
Difficult words: regulator (an official who checks that someone is following the regulations or laws), unprecedented (never done or known before), fleet (the number of vehicles or planes that operate together), altitude (the height above sea level).
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