Florida representatives silent on AAR Airlift Group conflict


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DynCorp, which has locations in Tampa and other sites throughout the state of Florida, has been just one of the critics of AAR Airlift Group, a controversial transportation contractor hired to fly U.S. diplomats, representatives and cabinet members to dangerous locations. 

In 2015, AAR beat out DynCorp to win an 11-year $10 billion contract from the U.S. State Department to provide transportation services for government officials on diplomatic missions. 

However, AAR's fulfillment of the contract has allegedly been less than professional and accusations against the firm range from lack of appropriate safety measures to allegations of espionage from DynCorp. 

DynCorp filed a federal lawsuit claiming that AAR's securing of the contract was made possible by corporate espionage. DynCorp previously accused the contractor of stealing its employees for their trade secrets. 

While the lawsuit has yet to be resolved, AAR has been a popular subject of discussion following an incident in May in which an AAR-operated helicopter nearly went down after flying too close to soccer goal posts. 

Additionally, AAR was banned for an indefinite period of time at an airfield in Afghanistan after they violated safety procedures, and it is feared that the ban will make future missions difficult to complete.

AAR's reputation seems to be part of its history. It purchased the assets of security contractor Blackwater, which had by then changed its name to EP Aviation, according to The Daily Beast.

Several members of Congress have also taken action and contacted Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, requesting that he look into the safety records of AAR Airlift Group and their compliance with the Worldwide Aviation Support Services (WASS) contract. 

Florida Business Daily reached out for comment to U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), who is on the House Committee on Armed Services, a member of the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations and a member of the Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces, as well as U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL) on the House Committee on Armed Services, member of the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities and member of Subcommittee on Readiness. Neither was able to respond.

While DynCorp and AAR's lawsuit is underway, Dyncorp is flying for the State Department. There is a possibility that they will continue doing so until the lawsuit is resolved.. 

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Organizations in this Story

AAR Corporation Dyncorp International LLC Political Action Committee

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