The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) has joined forces with four other aviation groups to assist the US Department of Transportation (DoT) in responding and mitigating challenges posed by the spread of coronavirus.
The groups are: Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA); the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA); Helicopter Association International (HAI), and the National Air Transportation Association (NATA).
In a letter addressed to Elaine Chao, secretary of the US DoT, the associations said: “As our nation works to respond to the threat of the coronavirus, we wanted to make ourselves available to assist in any way possible.”
The groups note the diversity of the nation’s general aviation (GA) and business aircraft fleet, the industry’s ability to operate from more than 5,000 GA airports across the country and its experience in combatting humanitarian crises.
They collectively pledge to transport time-sensitive supplies, medical and testing equipment, organ transplants, and key personnel to patients in need.
“Business aviation has always been at the forefront of relief efforts in times of need and to assist citizens and communities in their most challenging times,” added NBAA president and CEO, Ed Bolen.
“Just as we’ve joined together as a nation to face this challenging and evolving situation, I know that our industry is prepared and eager to provide whatever assistance we can to fight the spread of Covid-19.”
Meanwhile, in the UK, CEO of AOPA, Martin Robinson said corporate operations have not been affected too badly. Those that fly privately for business are continuing to do so where possible. However, he said the maintenance and flight training sectors would see a slowing in activity.
“Movements to European airfields are restricted and I think coronavirus will certainly affect the incomes of aerodromes, engineers and the flight training community.”