Civil Penalty Lodged Against The Cargo Hauler Near
The FAA on Friday announced it has levied civil penalties
against two companies; Fed-Ex and ERA Helicopters.
The FAA alleges that in 89 instances from June 13 to Sept. 4,
2009, FedEx failed to provide pilots-in-command with complete,
accurate information on the nature, quantity and weight of
hazardous materials loaded on their aircraft. Pilots-in-command
must be given this information under hazardous materials
The FAA also alleged that FedEx accepted four shipments of
hazardous materials for transportation by air when those materials
were not accurately described and certified in the accompanying
shipper’s documents. The shipments were accepted between June
18 and Aug. 26, 2009. The alleged violations were found during an
FAA dangerous goods inspection at the FedEx cargo-handling facility
at Bradley International Airport near Hartford, CT, from Aug. 31 to
Oct. 1, 2009.
“Pilots must know they are carrying dangerous goods so
they can take all necessary safety precautions,” said FAA
Administrator Randy Babbitt. “Shippers and airlines must
follow the rules so they are able to move these materials
The agency has proposed a fine of $689,800 against the freight
hauler, which has 30 days from the receipt of the FAA’s
enforcement letters to respond to the agency.
The other fine has been levied against ERA Helicopters of Lake
Charles, LA, for violations of the FAA’s drug and alcohol
testing program regulations.
In proposing a $194,249 civil penalty, the FAA alleges ERA
failed to conduct required pre-employment drug tests and receive
verified negative test results in 2010 before hiring eight
employees to perform safety-sensitive duties. The FAA also cited
ERA for allegedly failing to conduct required random testing of at
least 25 percent of its safety-sensitive employees during 2009.
In addition, the FAA alleges that on Mar. 15, 2010, ERA returned
an individual to safety-sensitive duties who had tested positive
for drug use earlier, but failed to obtain documentation that the
individual had completed return-to-duty requirements before
assigning him to flight crewmember duties.
The FAA also cited ERA for failing to implement a reasonable
program of follow-up drug and alcohol testing for a different
employee in 2009 in accordance with the schedule prescribed by an
ERA substance abuse professional. The company removed the employee
from safety-sensitive duties for refusing to take a random drug
test. He later completed return-to-duty drug and alcohol testing,
but the FAA said ERA did not complete required follow-up random
testing after he returned to duty.
The company has since modified its hiring and drug testing
programs to bring them into compliance with regulations.
Like Fed-Ex, ERA Helicopters has 30 days from the receipt of the
FAA’s enforcement letter to respond to the agency.