Gulfstream's Product Support Racks Up The Miles
Gulfstream last week said it recently completed its 1,000th product support flight since introducing its on-demand maintenance service in May 2002. According to the company, dispatch reliability rates among its in-service large-cabin fleet are in excess of 99.5 percent, but incidents such as a blown tire or a cracked windshield can still ground a plane. Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, Gulfstream’s Airborne Product Support uses a dedicated G100 aircraft to transport technicians and/or essential parts to aircraft under warranty at airports within North America, Central America and the Caribbean. Gulfstream says an Airborne Product Support assistance flight can save two or more days of waiting for a replacement windshield or tire. In cases where an operator’s aircraft is located outside the G100’s range of service, Gulfstream will fly the needed parts and technicians to a major hub where they can connect to commercial airline flights to reach the customer’s aircraft.
Most of the company's flights have been wholly within the U.S., but some 78 have been to Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean. “We were the first business-jet manufacturer to offer this value-added customer service and are still the only one to dedicate a plane solely for this purpose,” said Larry Flynn, president of Gulfstream's product support. The company's airborne product support operation employs eight dedicated pilots and a full-time manager who oversees the operation. “Every time we have the opportunity to dispatch the G100, we’re glad to do so because we know we’ve made all the difference to that operator,” Flynn added.