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12 December 2018

30 years since Air Europa’s First non-stop Transatlantic Flight

etops, flight etops air europa

30 years ago, Air Europa launched its first transatlantic flight operated by a two-engined aeroplane. This operation marked a milestone in the history of aviation and made of Air Europa the first Spanish airline to perform an ETOPS flight.

The ETOPS regulation (Extended-range operations with two-engined aeroplanes) was issued in 1985 and lays down the requirements that airlines must meet in order to operate two-engined flights over oceans and/or remote areas, such as deserts, rainforests, the poles, etc. This rule has allowed twin engine aircrafts to fly routes which are more than 60 minutes flying time away from the nearest airport suitable for emergency landing.

Air Europa has always worked to be at the technological forefront of aviation and received this certification just three years after it was published, both from the Directorate General for Civil Aviation (DGAC) and from the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). 29th November 1988 was the date in which Air Europa performed its first ETOPS flights between Madrid and New York , and the route was operated by a Boeing 757-200.

Air Europa also became one of the first airlines in the world to carry out ETOPS flights with this aircraft, and demonstrated not only its capacities to do so, but also the work conducted by the company to obtain this certification and guarantee total safety in the operation.

ETOPS standards require airlines to meet a whole range of additional safety measures, as well as certain requirements related to airworthiness, operational procedures, and training staff with specific skills, both for crew and maintenance workers.

ETOPS approval changed the altered the course of commercial aviation, as until then long-haul flights were only performed with four and three-engined aeroplanes. Since then, Air Europa has reached a new landmark and confirmed its position as an airline with one of the youngest, most efficient and most modern fleets in the sector.

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