7-May-2014 Source: Lord
When your fleet is comprised of the largest privately-owned multi-role utility helicopters in Australia and these aircraft fly critical missions, readiness is key. That is why McDermott Aviation relies on LORD Corporation to ensure its fleet is ready to respond in an emergency situation.
According to John McDermott, owner and founder of McDermott Aviation – Heli Lift of Australia, its fleet includes a wide variety of aircraft suited to handle missions ranging from transport to fire fighting and rescue. Central to the fleet are 12 Bell 214B1 heavy-lift helicopters, the largest most powerful single-engine helicopter ever manufactured.
As chief pilot, McDermott notes that the Bell 214B is the backbone of McDermott Aviation’s international firefighting fleet, with contracts throughout Australia, New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, the United States and Europe.
“Maintaining an adequate stock of spares for our legacy fleet is essential,” said McDermott. “Even with best planning, we will still have unscheduled breakdowns. Trying to predict for both scheduled and non-scheduled parts requirements is key to us being able to keep our fleet of extremely specialized helicopters serviceable and therefore ready to meet the requirements of our customer base, which typically involves responding to emergencies.”
He added that it is pointless having millions of dollars invested in helicopters if they are not ready to respond when the demand is required.
“We respond to wild fires, floods and other natural disasters and emergencies including ship salvage,” said McDermott. “Timing of our availability can mean the difference between life and death and property loss. Further, in the case of ship wreck salvage, our speed may prevent potential massive environmental disasters.”
To this end, McDermott Aviation has worked closely with LORD Corporation – a global leader in motion, vibration and noise control technology – since McDermott began operation of its Bell 214B fleet. Although McDermott Aviation has a dedicated in-house maintenance and engineering facility, it relies on LORD Corporation for critical parts including pylon supports and isolators as well as landing gear straps. Further, McDermott Aviation shares its spares, which enables LORD to help other operators around the globe.
According to Rodolphe Leroy, manager global sales, Business Development & Marketing for the LORD Aerospace Aftermarket, LORD has implemented several changes to help lower direct operating costs (DOCs) for operators, as well as ease the maintenance burden in terms of cost and support.
“We have taken a serious look at how we can help lower Bell operators’ direct operating costs, not only by re-pricing our parts, but also by constantly looking to increase the life of our legacy parts and offering additional repairs on new and existing platforms,” said Leroy.
LORD Corporation’s overhaul and repair program is FAA/EASA approved and can meet AOG requirements. Devoted solely to providing overhaul and repair products to aircraft owners and operators, customers can choose from an exchange pool, spare replacement parts, or complete overhaul of their product. Leroy noted that overhauled parts, manufactured with the same thoroughness as the parts going on a new aircraft, can be 50 percent cheaper than the new parts available through the OEM.
LORD currently offers a two-year limited warranty or 1,000 hours for LORD repaired parts on the 206, 407, 412 and 429 platforms.
“Helping aircraft owners improve their bottom-lines is part of our job as a leading supplier of noise, vibration and motion control products,” said Leroy. “And, our overhaul and repair parts program is simply one of the ways we help reduce DOCs.”
Leroy noted that the open communication the LORD has with McDermott Aviation has been key to understanding the customer’s needs and being able to respond to them.
“We did not hesitate to increase our level of inventory to support McDermott’s fleet and make sure that they kept flying,” he said.
McDermott noted that it is important for operators to be honest and open about their requirements to their suppliers, and to be prepared to share some of the cost burden of maintaining parts readiness, particularly with legacy machines.
“Without LORD Corporation’s product and support, our machines would not be serviceable,” said McDermott.
For more information, visit http://www.lord.com/mro.
About LORD Corporation
LORD Corporation is a diversified technology and manufacturing company developing highly reliable adhesives, coatings, motion management devices, and sensing technologies that significantly reduce risk and improve product performance. For 90 years, LORD has worked in collaboration with our customers to provide innovative aerospace, defense, automotive and industrial solutions. With world headquarters in Cary, N.C. and 2013 revenues in excess of $880 million, LORD has more than 2,900 employees in 26 countries and operates 16 manufacturing facilities and eight R&D centers worldwide. LORD actively promotes STEM education and many other community engagement initiatives. For more information, visit http://www.lord.com.