Ethiopian Airlines

Ethiopian Airlines

Infobox Airline
airline=Ethiopian Airlines
headquarters=Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
key_people=Seyoum Mesfin (Chairman), Girma Wake (CEO)
hubs=Addis Ababa Bole International Airport
frequent_flyer=Sheba Miles
fleet_size=34 (+11 orders) incl. cargo
company_slogan=Africa's World Class Airline

Ethiopian Airlines ( _am. የኢትዮጵያ አየር መንገድ, የኢትዮጵያ in short) is an airline based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. It is the national airline of Ethiopia, operating scheduled international passenger and freight services to 50 destinations world-wide, as well as domestic services to 28 destinations and passenger and cargo charter flights. Its main hub is Addis Ababa's Bole International Airport.Flight International 3 April 2007]


Ethiopian Airlines was founded on December 30, 1945, by Emperor Haile Selassie with assistance from TWA. It commenced operations on April 8, 1946, with a weekly service between Addis Ababa and Cairo with 5 Douglas DC-3 propeller-driven aircraft. [Camerapix, "Spectrum Guide to Ethiopia" (Brooklyn: Interlink, 2000), p. 296]

It started long-haul services to Frankfurt in 1958 and inaugurated its first jet service in January 1963 from Addis Ababa to Nairobi. In 1965, it changed from being a corporation to a share company and changed its name from Ethiopian Air Lines to Ethiopian Airlines. It is wholly owned by the government of Ethiopia and has 4,700 employees (at March 2007).

Although it relied on American pilots and technicians at the beginning, by its 25th anniversary in 1971, Ethiopian Airlines was managed and fully staffed by Ethiopian personnel. In 1998, it started transatlantic services. It is one of the few profitable African airlines. The airline was featured by "The Economist" as an example of excellence in late 1987, ["In Search of Excellence, the Hard Way", "The Economist", 31 December 1987.] and Ethiopianist Paul B. Henze recognized it in 2000 as being "one of the most reliable and profitable airlines in the Third World", [Paul B. Henze, "Layers of Time: A History of Ethiopia", (New York: Palgrave, 2000), p. 246.]

The airline provided service to the Eritrean capital of Asmara until a war erupted between the two countries in 1998. In 2002, the airline carried 1,054,687 passengers. It employed 4,539 staff in January 2005.Fact|date=May 2007 Ethiopian Airlines commenced "Vision 2010" a few years ago which aims to increase the net profit of the airline to 1 billion US Dollars and the staff to 6,000. The airline calls its frequent flyer program "Sheba Miles" in reference to the legendary Queen of Sheba.

Prior to his 1996 death on Ethiopian Airlines Flight 961"Ocean Landing" or "African Hijack," "Mayday"] , Mohamed Amin published issues of "Selamta", the Ethiopian Airlines in-flight magazine. [Episode Seven, "Mo & Me"]



Ethiopian Airlines Cargo operates two Boeing 757-200PF freighter aircraft [ "Ethiopian Airlines fleet @ CH-Aviation] ] to points in Africa, Middle East, India and Europe. [ [ "Ethiopian Cargo Network] ] .

During the first five months of 2007, the cargo division of Ethiopian Airlines leased two DC-10-30F from World Airways [World Airways signs DC-10 Cargo contract with Ethiopian Airlines ( [ "World Airways" online] )28 December 2006] to add capacity on its network.

In July 2007, Ethiopian Airlines announced they would purchase an MD-11F to be delivered in January 2009, and also an intention to lease a second MD-11F later that same year. [Ethiopian and BCC Sign Deal for MD-11 Freighter Aircraft ( [ "Ethiopian Airlines" online] )26 July 2007]

In November 2007, Ethiopian leased two Boeing 747-200 cargo aircraft powered by GE Engines.

In June 2008 they will move operations from Brussels to Liège Airport (up to 12 flights a week using their 747).

Incidents and accidents

Since 1970, there have been two fatal events involving Ethiopian Airlines aircraft [] .

On 15 September 1988 a Boeing 737 on Ethiopian Airlines Flight 604 taking off from Bahir Dar, Ethiopia, ingested pigeons into both engines. One engine lost thrust almost immediately and the second lost thrust during the emergency return to the airport. During the crash landing, 31 of the 105 passengers were killed [] [] .

On 23 November 1996, three hijackers commandeered a Boeing 767 on Ethiopian Airlines Flight 961. The flight was on its first leg of an Addis Ababa-Nairobi-Brazzaville-Lagos-Abidjan route. The hijackers instructed the pilot to fly to Australia. Flying south along the African coast, the controller of Nairobi advised them to land at Mombasa. The fuel ran out and one of the plane's engines stopped. While attempting a landing into shallow waters 500 meters from shore near Le Galawa Beach (Comoros Islands near Moroni in the Comoros Islands), the aircraft ran completely out of fuel and ditched. 123 of the 175 passengers and crew died. All of the hijackers are presumed dead. The aircraft was completely destroyed. []

The entire crash landing was captured on film by an unsuspecting woman on the beach.


The Ethiopian Airlines fleet includes the following aircraft (at September 2008)

Not counting the De Havilland planes, the fleet average age is 9.7 years at January 2008 [ [ Ethiopian Airlines Fleet Age] ] .

In February 2005 Ethiopian Airlines signed a preliminary agreement to buy up to 10 Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft (5 firm orders and 5 options). On 31 May 2005 Boeing announced that Ethiopian had exercised its purchase rights and confirmed a firm order for 10 aircraft. Expected delivery of the new planes is between 2008 and 2011. Ethiopian Cargo operates two Lockheed L-100 freighters. ET Cargo also leases additional aircraft based on traffic requirements. Three of the existing four passenger 757-200s are expected to be converted to freighter configuration.Fact|date=May 2007


The United States Federal Aviation Administration accredited the maintenance devision with license No. ETIY 102F. [" [ Approval & Accreditation] ," "Ethiopian Airlines"] [" [ Ethiopian Airlines Pioneer of African Aviation Industry] ," "Ethiopian Government"]


External links

* [ Official website]
* [ Profile]

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