Solomon Islands National Carrier, Solomon Airlines has announced that one of its two Twin Otter Aircrafts registered as H4-NNP will be under-going scheduled refurbishment works on one of its wings.
The Aircraft is expected to enter the Engineering hanger on the 9th of Feb 2013 and the expected downtime for the refurbishment work is two to four weeks.
Experts on wing extension or relifing program from the USA are expected to arrive in the country on 18th Feb 2013 to carry out the work, on which they will be assisted by the airline’s own local engineers. Preparations are expected to happen prior to their arrival to ensure minimal downtime.
"During the period of refurbishment, we will continue with our scheduled flying with the other Twin Otter without any major effect on our operation due to the current schedule only having one Twin Otter operating and in any event, we are supported by two Islanders," says a Solomon Airlines spokesperson.
“Although we may be stretched during the downtime period, the plan is still to maintain or adjust as we proceed on a day by day basis.
“Our reservations department will be reviewing plans daily and weekly; hopefully without too many schedule changes and request the Domestic travelling public to ensure close communication with our reservations staff and also listen in to the SIBC daily for any Operational advice on the next day’s movements from the 9th February onwards,” a spokesman from the airline said.
“Naturally, we apologise to our valued clients and the travelling public for any inconvenience caused by this must do efurbishment work. This work is an approved and authorised wing extension program and trust that the public will assist with their patience and we are hoping to complete the exercise earlier if at all possible.”
The airline stated that “prior to standing down the aircraft, we had checked with other Twin Otter operators in the region like Airlines PNG, but the prices offered were prohibitive and therefore our commitment to minimise the stand-down period to carry out the exercise was decided considering that during February, it was not regarded as a heavy travelling period either.”
Source: Press Release, Solomon Airlines