Maintenance Working Group
The first AOPA Maintenance Working Group meeting was held in March 2009. The attendees comprised two senior personnel from the CAA Maintenance and Airworthiness standards group, two from the GA maintenance industry together with George Done and Martin Robinson from AOPA representing aircraft owners. Subsequently, and partly as a result of that meeting, the CAA organised three seminars on EASA Part M aimed at informing representatives from Approved Maintenance Organisations and other interested parties of the state of play and latest developments at that time.
It subsequently transpired that the transition to EASA Part M continued to raise difficulties, particularly with the maintainers, and a further meeting was organised by AOPA in October 2010 at which it was decided to hold similar meetings for the foreseeable future on a roughly quarterly basis. More recently, the CAA General Aviation Partnership, which meets three times a year, receives an update from the AOPA Maintenance Working Group as regular item on the agenda, so for coordination purposes the working group now meets about 3 weeks beforehand. Typically, between 2 and 4 CAA representatives attend the WG meetings, to join the owners and maintainers. Important practical products have included the AOPA Code of Practice for Maintenance and Repair, and magazine articles on pre-purchase inspections, the Self- Declared Maintenance Programme (SDMP) and 8.33 kHz radios.
AOPA Maintenance Working Group Terms of Reference
1. To provide a forum for discussion of maintenance issues to the mutual benefit of aircraft owners and maintainers.
2. To extend the forum to the regulators and like-minded aviation associations in order to allow issues to be discussed in a
constructive manner and resolutions to problems sought.
3. The WG is open to maintainers who are willing and able to contribute on a voluntary basis, but it is expected that these will be holders of formal maintenance approvals.
4. The WG will endeavour to achieve maintenance representation across the range of activity, to include, for example, those involved in avionics and rotary wing.
5. It is not expected that maintainers will necessarily be AOPA members (but encouraged).
6. It is not expected that maintainers will necessarily be signed up to the AOPA Code of Practice for Maintainers (but encouraged).
7. The WG will endeavour to achieve a reasonable representation of aircraft owners, including independent owners who will be members of AOPA.
8. The WG will normally meet at approximately quarterly intervals, or as required and also use email for updates.
9. Items for the agenda will be welcome from owners (via Ask AOPA),maintainers and regulators.
10. Notes of meetings will be circulated to members of the WG and the AOPA Board.
The current members of the AOPA Maintenance Working Group are:
- Andrew McCoig Part owner of a Rochester based Robin DR400 for the last 30 years.
- Malcolm Bird Part owner of Sportcruiser (currently an EASA Permit aircraft) and owner and builder of a Rotorway Exec 162F Helicopter
- Carol Brightwell Arion Aviation Ltd, Rochester Airport, Chatham, ME5 9SF
- Ken Craigie Former Chief Inspector, Light Aircraft Association. LAE and PPL holder
- Mark Davies Swiftair Maintenance Ltd, Leicester Airport, Leicester LE2 2FG
- George Done AOPA, recent part owner of Piper Cubs and a Cherokee
- John Eagles Air Stratus Ltd, Oaksey Park Airfield, Oaksey, Malmesbury, Wilts SN16 9SD. M3 & Subparts F, G. & I. Also Technical Chair of ALAE, now part of Prospect. Owner of Cherokee & Auster under restoration. Part owner of Tiger Moth rebuild.
- Michael Fowler HQ Aviation Ltd, Denham Aerodrome, Denham UB9 5DF. Helicopter maintenance and operations.
- Paul Hendry-Smith The Light Aircraft Company (TLAC), Little Snoring Airfield, Little Snoring, Fakenham, NR21 0JL. Subparts F, G & I. Also manufacturer of the Sherwood Ranger. Owner of a Jabiru J400, Cessna 140 and Sherwood Ranger ST.
- Paul Layzell Previously Accountable Manager, Touchdown Engineering Ltd, Old Buckenham Airfield, Abbey Road, Old Buckenham, Attleborough, NR17 1PU. M3 & Part M FG & I. Owner Tiger Moth & Super Cub.
- Jerry Parr Airworthiness Engineer Light Aviation Association, LAA inspector and EASA Part-66/BCAR licensed engineer.
- Neil Peacock Principal Airworthiness Surveyor, CAA.
- Michael Powell Chief Engineer, Light Aircraft and Maintenance Services, 4 Chapel Road, Upton, Norwich, NR13 6BT.
- Nigel Rockhill The Spitfire Co Ltd, Biggin Hill
- James Sharman Sharman Avionics Ltd, Units 23 & 24 Bellman Gate, Sywell Aerodrome, NN6 0BL.
- Peter Shaw Head of Engineering, West London Aero Club, White Waltham
- Mark Shortman Head of Policy and Delivery, GAU, CAA
- Mike Smart M. Smart Ltd, Farley Farm, Hampshire. M3 & Subparts F, G & I. Consultant engineer for all piston engine aircraft (M & N Smart)
- Jim Tonge Aircraft Owner, PPL and FI and currently owns a Piper Arrow IV.
- Pete Wood Vintage Fabrics Ltd, Audley End Airfield, Saffron Walden, CB11 4LH.
- John Davies CAA
- Lucy Wooton LAA Chief Inspector
If you are interested in this Working Group or wish to raise a maintenance related issue, please contact George by clicking on his name below.
One of the most regular requests AOPA UK gets from members is to resolve disputes between aircraft owners and maintainers. The AOPA Maintainers Working Group have produced a Code of Practice for Maintenance and Repair that they themselves will follow, and which can be signed up to by light aircraft maintainers.
Many disputes arise from unrealistic expectations on the part of owners. A common understanding prior to the commencement of work is desirable.
If an aircraft maintainer is not signed up to the AOPA Code of Practice ask why not! Be wary of any organisation that refuses to give any such, or similar, commitment to you as a Customer.
An aircraft owner who is a customer of a light aircraft maintenance organisation that subscribes to the AOPA Code of Practice for Maintenance and Repair is provided the following commitment:
AOPA Code of Practice for Maintenance and Repair
The Maintenance Organisations below have signed up to the AOPA Maintenance Code of Practice.