American Airlines plans to bring its CFM56-5B engine maintenance inhouse starting in October 2018. “Today, that engine overhaul work is performed by our GE Engine partners,” says David Seymour, the airlines’ senior vice president-integrated operations.
American Airlines’ base in Tulsa, Oklahoma will perform the maintenance, repair and overhaul work and expects to input 45 CFM56-5B engines per year after it sets up the capability.
The airlines’ contract for the CFM56-5Bs MRO is set to expire next year so the airline bid it out to GE, other vendors and its inhouse shop.
After the bidding process, American determined its internal “team who does the -7B work so well should perform the same work on the -5, especially given the high degree of commonality of the two engine variants,” says Seymour.
It operates a total of 318 CFM56-5Bs that power 151 of its fleet of 392 Airbus A230-family aircraft.
To accommodate the -5B, Americans plans to add 80 positions to the Tulsa engine shop, which already performs CFM56-7B overhauls—in 53 days.
Seymour says that “whenever there’s steady, long-term consistent work that our skilled technicians can perform inhouse and it makes competitive sense to do so, we will insource that work.”
Seymour told its Tulsa Tech Ops employees on Nov. 29 that American “performs more maintenance work inhouse on our own aircraft and engines than any other airline.”