Mexico strikes deal with U.S. to recover Category 1 aviation safety status

Mexico signed an agreement with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of the United States to recover its category 2 aviation safety status, downgraded to category 2 last May, reported the Ministry of Communications and Transportation (SCT).

FAA experts “will make visits to our country that will begin in August, through which they will provide the necessary technical assistance, ” announced the Federal Civil Aviation Agency (AFAC) of the SCT in a statement.

The agency said the Amendment to the Memorandum of Understanding went into effect last Friday.

The SCT detailed that the work during the visit of the US experts involves “a technical review to determine if the safety supervision by the AFAC complies with the minimum standards.”

The Mexican government also indicated that the specialists will provide the Mexican aeronautical authority with a report of their findings and recommendations for improvement.

The Ministry of Communications and Transportation reiterated that the recovery of Category 1 is a priority, in the shortest possible time, so they have not stopped “under any circumstances the improvement actions that allow solving what is observed by the FAA.”

The FAA announced on May 25 that it would lower Mexico’s rating from “Category 1” to “Category 2” in air safety, thereby prohibiting Mexican carriers from offering new services or routes in the United States.

According to their assessment, Mexico does not meet the standards of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the United Nations entity that regulates global aeronautics.

The measure also prevents US airlines from marketing and selling tickets with Mexican partner airlines, although it does not affect the existing service of Mexican airlines to the United States.

The association assured that the three companies comply with the safety standards of the International Air Transport Association ( IATA ) since they are already working together with the airlines to solve this situation as soon as possible.

“We assure our passengers that, when they fly with ASPA pilots, they are traveling with pilots who have met the highest international safety standards,” they said.

Likewise, ASPA said that it makes its experience, knowledge, and experts in technical matters available to the AFAC to help in solving the findings that exist in the audit.

Aeroméxico also said in a statement that its operations to and from the United States will not be affected. In addition to the fact that the safety of its passengers is the highest priority and therefore it will continue to operate under the highest international standards.

“All tickets, reservations, electronic vouchers, Premier Points and benefits of the loyalty program will continue to be valid […] We are in the best disposition to support the aeronautical authorities of our country to recover Category 1 for the benefit of the industry ”

The United States government expressed its security concerns regarding the aviation system in Mexico. The FAA “identified several areas of non-compliance with ICAO minimum safety standards. ” ICAO is the International Civil Aviation Organization, a body associated with the United Nations that connects aviation regulators from around the world.

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