LAW not to fly again as investigation reveals serious breaches
Latin American Wings (LAW) will not fly again after the General Directorate of Civil Aeronautics (DGAC) of Chile definitively revoked its Air Operator Certificate (AOC), following the results of an audit conducted in March 2018.
The AOC of LAW was revoked in March 2018, after series of service delays and interruptions, leaving passengers stranded in Chili, Peru or the United States, unable to reach their final destinations.
Following the audit, the DGAC released an alarming report of 60 pages to which local newspaper Diario Financiero had access.
It was discovered that the airline operated five Boeing 737s without insurance or civil liability for damages to third parties, passengers and crew. The last insurance expired in November 2017.
The airline also lacked an Aeronautical Maintenance Center approved by the DGAC and was unable to trace back its spare parts both in the warehouse and on the operating aircraft. LAW crew did not receive any training for emergency situations such as plane hijacking or terrorist attacks. The DGAC also discovered that on March 1, 2018, the airline operated a flight with a pilot lacking current type ratings.
As for the financial irregularities, the report states LAW repeatedly failed to produce financial statements. It could not pay the aeronautical fees that allowed it to use the airport and the air navigation services at the time of flight. Some employees did not receive their salaries from January to March 2018.
LAW described the results as “arbitrary” and says it never was given a chance to defend itself as it never received the audit results. The airline has appealed the DGAC’s decision to the Court of Appeals of Santiago.
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