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Elite Jets leader shares aviation safety expertise at national industry event

A Southwest Florida business leader’s expertise in air safety recently landed him a spot on the dais at the National Business Aviation Association’s annual meeting in Las Vegas.

Stephen Myers, CAM, executive vice president at Elite Jets in Naples, spoke at an NBAA panel examining the fatal crash of a Bombardier Challenger business jet in July 2021 in northern California. The accident near Truckee-Tahoe Airport killed both pilots and all four passengers after the jet crashed while in a circling landing approach.

Joined by panelists representing flight safety schools, private air charter operators and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), Myers shared his insights into an accident that the NTSB said was caused by an unstabilized approach, along with contributing factors that included “self-induced pressure, poor crew resource management and a lack of leadership.”

“Post-accident safety assessments are a critical tool in an industry where even the smallest of mistakes can have dire consequences,” Myers said. “At Elite Jets, where our commitment to safety is unwavering, it’s an honor and privilege to participate in such robust conversations with some of the industry’s top authorities.”

As a charter aircraft service, Elite Jets must adhere to more stringent Federal Aviation Administration oversight (via a Part 135 certificate of operations) than privately-owned, non-commercial aircraft that are regulated under FAA’s Part 91 regulations, including the business jet that crashed in northern California and which used a contract pilot – a practice not allowed by Elite Jets.

Elite Jets recently achieved “Wingman” status from the global air safety auditor WYVERN for air charter operators. To earn the Wingman designation, charter companies must undergo comprehensive onsite, multi-day audits that include a full review of the company’s operational history, safety records, Safety Management System (SMS), internal evaluation program, administrative compositions, technical documentation, pilot and aircraft records, training requirements and maintenance operations, including the training and experience of technicians.

In addition, Elite Jets also is a platinum-rated charter through ARGUS and maintains a Stage 2 Seal through International Standard for Business Aircraft Operations (ISBAO).

“These external seals of approval recognize Elite Jets’ commitment to safety as a core company value,” Myers said. “It is a commitment shared by our entire team, from captains and first officers to mechanics, cleaning crews and our office and administrative team members.”

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