The Brazilian airline Azul decided to carry out a simple conversion of one of its E195 jets for cargo transportation. The PR-AYO registration aircraft, which was out of service, had its fuselage painted again and was spotted at an airport in recent days in the new task.
According to Azul, the jet capable of carrying 118 passengers had the seats removed to expand the cargo capacity. The airline’s goal is to meet the growing demand for product transportation during the coronavirus pandemic. The company also said it would give more details about the transformation process and the aircraft’s capacity as a freighter in the coming days.
The aircraft used in the conversion has flown with Azul since 2010 and is part of the fleet of more than 50 first generation E195s that would be taken out of service in the coming months, as the company received the largest E195-E2. But the outbreak of COVID-19 changed plans and now the airline has postponed the arrival of new Embraer aircraft.
Azul has only two purely cargo planes, Boeing 737-400F jets, but has used other aircraft such as the A320 and A330 to transport goods. ANAC, the Brazilian civil aviation agency, authorized in April that cargo be transported in the passenger cabin of commercial planes flying in the country.
The E-Jet family jets until today have not been converted to freighters, but Embraer even considered launching a version for this purpose in the 90s.