More Pilots Report Maintenance Problems
AVweb's stories (1, 2) on Monday about some maintenance and repair shops turning away work on older airplanes brought in more reports from pilots who have run into similar situations. Readers in Maryland, Texas and Utah said local operators have told them they can no longer work on aircraft over 18 years old due to insurance and liability concerns. Brian Finnegan, president of the Professional Aviation Maintenance Association (PAMA), told AVweb on Wednesday that the 18-year limit on manufacturer liability set by the 1994 General Aviation Revitalization Act (GARA) does raise concerns that the focus of litigation in the case of an accident involving an older aircraft could shift to the maintenance shop. But so far no troubling trends have been noted, he said. "But more and more aircraft are turning 18 years old every year [since GARA], and it could be that at some point a critical mass will be reached," he said.