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Latin American Wings Grounded: AOC Suspended

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Latin American Wings Grounded: AOC Suspended

Carlos P. Valle C.

Latin American Wings Grounded: AOC Suspended
March 13
10:51 2018

MIAMI — Last week, Chilean low-cost carrier, Latin American Wings (LAW), halted its operations grounding all aircraft in its fleet. The airline claims that it has begun a process of “reorganization” looking for new capital, citing financial woes.

On Monday, the airline said in a statement that it would restart operations this coming Friday, but the Chilean National Aviation Authority, the General Direction of Civil Aviation (DGCA), announced yesterday that the carrier’s Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) has been revoked.

“The General Direction of Civil Aviation informs to the public opinion, that on behalf of the legal and regulatory attributions, from today we proceed to suspend Latin American Wings’ Air Operator’s Certificate,” said the DGCA in a statement.

READ MORE: Latin American Wings (LAW) to Launch Santiago-Caracas-Miami Flights

The Peruvian National Aviation Authority also revoked the carrier’s AOC two weeks ago. According to the DGCA, the decision was taken after the airline said it was supposed to retake operations on March 16.

“LAW suspended its operations during a restructuration process of the company and canceled all its scheduled flights. Also, it announced new routes that haven’t been presented nor approved by the aviation authority,” remarked the DGCA, adding that these measures will remain in place until the carrier fulfills the technical and safety conditions that any airline is expected to meet.

PHOTO: Juan Carlos Bascuñan.

LAW must present the restructuration plan to the authorities for the renewal of the AOC.

According to the restructuration plan, LAW was supposed to lease in April part of its fleet and crew to another airline for six months to achieve a better income and maintain international operations.

READ MORE: Norwegian Air Argentina Receives AOC from Argentinean Government

LAW had routes to Puerto Principe in Haiti, Caracas in Venezuela, and Miami in the U.S., as well as services to Argentina and the Dominican Republic. It also has plans for network expansion to North America and the Caribbean.

The low-cost carrier operates the Miami route via Xtra Airways and the Caracas service through an agreement with Venezuelan airline, Estelar.

The Chilean carrier has a fleet of five Boeing 737-300 aircraft and had planned to receive two 767-300s operated by Air New Zealand. It also had two Boeing 757-200s operated by Icelandair.

In August 2017, the CEO of the LAW said the airline was up to add 14 737-300s in the next two years. But with no AOC, these plans may be far from becoming a reality.

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María Corina Roldan

María Corina Roldan

Online Executive Editor. Journalist and Certified Radio Host. Studying for a Specialization in Public Opinion and Political Communications. Even though I love politics I've found myself fascinated by the Aviation World. I'm also passionate by economy, strategic communications, my family, my country, and dogs. mc@airwaysmag.com

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