|Hubs||Rickenbacker International Airport, Miami International Airport, Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, Subic Bay International Airport|
|Headquarters||Building 597 Rickenbacker International Airport Columbus, OH 43217|
Air Tahoma was an American cargo airline (Part 121) based in Columbus, Ohio, United States. It was established and started operations in 1996 in San Diego then later moved to Indianapolis in 1998 and to its last location at Rickenbacker International Airport, Columbus. Air Tahoma operated contract cargo flights internationally to the Caribbean, Mexico, Vietnam, Philippines and the United States. Air Tahoma ceased operations in 2009.
Noel Rude founded the company in 1996, and it was based out of Rickenbacker Airport in Columbus, OH
Air Tahoma is a spin-off from Cool Air Inc., which was founded in 1986 by Rude and his father, Bud Rude, who is a veteran of the airline industry and who founded the parent company that originally flew firefighting missions in Washington.
FedEx contracted with Air Tahoma to fly to cities without enough traffic to support a larger jet.
Air Tahoma operated twin-engine turboprop Convairs (either the 580 or the 240).
Their Air Carrier certificate was revoked in January 2009 after the FAA found many systemic violations of the Federal Aviation Regulations.
The Rude Family has had many investments over the years including a gold mine in Alaska. Bud Rude founded an operation in Washington State called Cool Air Inc. in 1986, which later branched out and became Air Tahoma Inc. in 1996, under the direction of his son Noel Rude. Together, this father and son team make up R & R Holdings, but other family members also hold various positions in the company. In 2011 Noel Rude resumed cargo operations under new company name Air Tribe currently based in Guadalajara, Mexico.
- Miami to Cancún to Mérida
- Miami to Guatemala to San Pedro Sula
- Subic Bay to Saigon
- Aguadilla (Borinquen) to Port of Spain
- San Juan to various other countries in the West Indies
Incidents and accidents
- In October 2003, an Air Tahoma aircraft caught fire upon landing.
- January 7, 2004, one of the Convair 580s lost all oil pressure from one engine and was forced to make an emergency landing while in Memphis.
- Air Tahoma Flight 185 crashed during approach to landing just 11⁄4 mile short of the runway at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport on the 13 August 2004. The crash killed the First Officer Ray Gelwicks and the Captain received minor injuries. NTSB ruled that the crash was due to a dual engine flameout as a result of the Captain being distracted with preflight planning during the flight, Captain didn't follow proper crossfeeding procedures, and Flight Crew didn't monitor the fuel gauges. There was sufficient fuel on board and nothing was wrong with the aircraft systems.
- Air Tahoma Flight 587
On September 1, 2008 an Air Tahoma Convair 580 crashed in Pickaway County, Ohio, shortly after taking off from Rickenbacker International Airport, claiming the lives of the 3 crew members. The FAA and NTSB are investigating. Rickenbacker International Airport is 16 miles (26 km) southeast of Columbus, Ohio. The crash happened around the Noon hour.
NTSB Identification: CHI08MA270 14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation Accident occurred Monday, September 1, 2008 in Columbus, OH Probable Cause Approval Date: 6/22/2009 Aircraft: CONVAIR CV-580, registration: N587X Injuries: 3 Fatal.
The accident flight was the first flight following maintenance that included flight control cable rigging. The flight was also intended to provide cockpit familiarization for the first officer and the pilot observer, and as a training flight for the first officer. About one minute after takeoff, the first officer contacted the tower and stated that they needed to return to land. The airplane impacted a cornfield about one mile southwest of the approach end of the runway, and 2 minutes 40 seconds after the initiation of the takeoff roll. The cockpit voice recorder (CVR) indicated that, during the flight, neither the captain nor the first officer called for the landing gear to be raised, the flaps to be retracted, or the power levers to be reduced from full power. From the time the first officer called "rotate" until the impact, the captain repeated the word "pull" about 27 times. When the observer pilot asked, "Come back on the trim?" the captain responded, "There's nothing anymore on the trim." The inspection of the airplane revealed that the elevator trim cables were rigged improperly, which resulted in the trim cables being reversed. As a result, when the pilot applied nose-up trim, the elevator trim system actually applied nose-down trim. An examination of the maintenance instruction cards used to conduct the last inspection revealed that the inspector's block on numerous checks were not signed off by the Required Inspection Item (RII) inspector. The RII inspector did not sign the item that stated: "Connect elevator servo trim tab cables and rig in accordance with Allison Convair [maintenance manual]...” The item had been signed off by the mechanic, but not by the RII inspector. The card also contained a NOTE, which stated in bold type, "A complete inspection of all elevator controls must be accomplished and signed off by an RII qualified inspector and a logbook entry made to this effect." The RII inspector block was not signed off.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows: The improper (reverse) rigging of the elevator trim cables by company maintenance personnel, and their subsequent failure to discover the misrigging during required post-maintenance checks. Contributing to the accident was the captain’s inadequate post-maintenance preflight check.
- Air Tahoma grounded by FAA
- Article on Air Tahoma crashes and incidents
- Columbus Dispatch Article Flight 587
- Columbus Dispatch article 1/15/09
- Aero-News Network article
- Columbus Dispatch article 1/24/09
- NTSB Preliminary Report
- NTSB Probable Cause Report
- "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 2007-03-27. p. 67.