Following the ban on flights operations by the President Muhammadu Buhari, the National Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, has urged airline operators not to starve their aircrafts of maintenance at this crucial moment.
The ban of flight operations is indefinite due to the outbreak of coronavirus in Nigeria as flight restriction has been identified as one of the avenues to prevent the spread of the pandemic in the country.
Airline operators have also been advised on the need for aircrafts to be properly cleaned and disinfected in accordance with World Health Organisation, WHO, Guide to Hygiene and Sanitisation in aviation 2009, an Operational Consideration for Managing COVID-19 Cases out Outbreak in the aviation industry using disinfecting agents approved by the aircraft manufacturer.
NCAA gave this update through letter addressed to airline operators and signed by Engineer Ita Awak, Director, Airworthiness Standards of NCAA, on behalf of the Director General.
Awak noted that aircraft at this period has stayed out of the sky following the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic as airline operators and owners have suspended flight operations indefinitely as a way of curbing the transmission of the disease in the country.
Meanwhile, NCAA also noted that some aircrafts would experience some mechanic fixations which may affect its airworthiness after the demise of COVID-19 and require additional maintenance.
According to him, “airline operators must ensure that their affected aircraft is kept in airworthy condition during the period it is not flying and before returning to the sky, they must see that all storage/preservative maintenance requirements are carried out in accordance to the procedures stated in the Aircraft Maintenance Manual/Approved Programme/Manufacturers’ Technical Document”.
NCAA added that it has to be notified by the airline operators on their choices of maintenance actions before the airplanes return to the nation’s airspace.
“It behooves on the Authority to kindly remind all concerned aircraft owners/operators on the need to ensure that all affected aircraft are kept in airworthy condition by performing all necessary maintenance requirement of them,” the Authority said.
According to NCAA, in event that none of the above is observed, the Authority may liaise with the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) on what to do in order to bring back the aircraft to service which is not a desirable option.
NCAA, however, appreciated aircraft owners and air travel operators for shutting down operations to curtail the pandemic in the interest of the public health regardless of the huge financial losses involved.