Aircraft Maintenance Plans –Awareness of the intervals and tasks

An aircraft maintenance plan has several different sources that are used in creating it. When the sources are combined, they reflect that specific aircraft and so the maintenance plan is now customised accordingly. The multiple sources will determine tasks and apply instructions on when to carry these tasks out.

The tasks are from a multitude of sources such as Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMR) which are essential tasks to keep the aircraft safe and airworthy through to documents nonmandatory service bulletins (SB) or information letters.

Depending on the source and the approvals from the national aviation authority, it is possible and encouraged to customize the plan further than just the tasks for the aircraft but to also consider when we carry them out. It is here, for example, reliability programmes can really come in to be an important part of the maintenance plan.

While there are certain tasks that you cannot change frequencies forsuch as CMR or tasks that are Airworthiness Directives (AD), there are many that you can amend the frequency on, based on the operator experience. It is also good to be aware that tasks can be requested with no source other than the operator–these might be checks based on operator experience. A common example of this can be a Safety Assessment of Foreign Aircraft (SAFA) checklist where additional checks are carried out to ensure reduced findings by an audit.

These are good considerations especially if an aircraft is repossessed and stored; commonly an aircraft returning from the lease will transition to a generic maintenance plan, whereas a repossessed aircraft will not transition to a generic maintenance plan. It means that tasks could be called up that are not yet required on a generic plan or are operator-specific tasks with no mandated requirement to carry them out –essentially it is important in this instance for financial awareness. Tasks may also be based around utilisation or the prior operator and be called up early; this is not required anymore, and the tasks can be pushed back in some cases.

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