(Yicai Global) Dec. 4 -- Japan's transport authorities have ordered the Japanese joint-venture airline of Shanghai-based Spring Airlines Co. [SHA:601021] to take corrective measures over multiple safety incidents that occurred within half a year.
About 20 percent of the carrier's pilots have been grounded and retrained.
A Spring Airlines Japan captain and a co-pilot tried to take off in May before the aircraft's flaps were ready, and a similar problem occurred again in October, causing the plane to shake violently and a passenger to sustain a broken hip, Japanese media reported. The nation's transport authorities believe the company has safety management issues.
Spring Airlines Japan has suspended 10 pilots and grounded those aged between 30 to 70. By industry convention, civil aviators should retire at 60, but this age may be bumped up to 65. Four of the pilots grounded are captains, with the rest co-pilots. All have undergone retraining, and seven who meet age requirements can fly again. The measures have left the company's normal flights unaffected, Beijing Business Today quoted Spring Airlines Japan as saying today.
Founded in 2011, Spring Airlines Japan is headquartered in Tokyo's Narita International Airport. Spring Airlines holds a 33 percent stake in the budget Japanese carrier, which mainly plies Japan-to-China routes.