My aunt is considering booking with Westjet for flights to London Gatwick for which only old Boeing 763sa are used. We both know that oldness of aircraft is not itself a problem, but Westjet's continual problems with their Boeing 763s:

  1. are they unreasonably worse than average?

  2. should they discourage avoiding not only the 763s, but Westjet in general? If the answer to 1 is 'yes', then Westjet appears immoral in allowing such defective airplanes to fly?

[CBC article of 2016/7/11 :] In a video posted to WestJet's internal YouTube channel on June 16, 2016, chief executive officer Gregg Saretsky explains the problem, calling the route a "hobbled operation."

"The 767s have been giving us lots of grief, lots of mechanical problems," said Saretsky in the video.

"We're finding that when things break, because some of the parts are so old, we don't have them in store. And then we're doing a global search through the AOG desk to find them and then it's taking two or three days to get these things. We don't want to keep them in stock because they break once every 20 years."

Aeroinside lists some incidents here; I do not know how to search the TSB website's spreadsheet for incidents with Westjet's B763s efficiently, rather than reading line by line.


closed as primarily opinion-based by mins, Simon, J Walters, aeroalias, SMS von der Tann Nov 26 '16 at 14:15

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ All commercial aircraft are equally safe, they hold an airworthiness certificate. Going further than that is an opinion unless the discussion is based on a specific element showing the airworthiness demonstration was incomplete or not done properly, or is no longer valid. $\endgroup$ – mins Nov 26 '16 at 11:38
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    $\begingroup$ The only problem I read from your quote is that they are having difficulty finding parts, which means higher costs for Westjet because planes are grounded. Things break all the time on new aircraft too, but they are more readily replaced which is cheaper. Safety is only a problem when critical parts break unexpectedly, which is arguably less likely on tried and tested aircraft $\endgroup$ – Sanchises Nov 26 '16 at 12:36
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    $\begingroup$ Honestly, I find it very difficult to accept that all commercial aircraft should be equally safe, but after reading travel.stackexchange.com/questions/28978/… I am sort of convinced! ;) $\endgroup$ – bogl Nov 26 '16 at 12:36
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    $\begingroup$ @user6035379 Hard to discern what your disappointment is in response to: this question, or the poor reception this question received? $\endgroup$ – J Walters Nov 26 '16 at 20:00
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    $\begingroup$ @mins Ah, I see. Looks like their scoring process is proprietary. So there's no way of determining precisely what calculations they're using. I guess what they do is to airline safety what credit scoring is to finance. $\endgroup$ – TomMcW Nov 27 '16 at 20:31

All commercial aircraft are subject to stringent regulations and checks. The variation of safety records of different aircraft type is negligible compared to other factors. Therefore all aircraft type may be considered equally safe.

See https://travel.stackexchange.com/questions/28978/which-airplane-is-the-safest for more discussion of this topic.


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