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Transport & Logistics

Air Craft

Keeping all the ground support maintenance vehicles at an airport working is no mean feat, and a single missing item such as a de-icing vehicle could seriously delay flights.    So to find that the service vehicles at Aberdeen Airport at Dyce and its three million passengers per year depend on just one company (and a little help from Pirtek) makes the service even more remarkable.

The original airfield was built in the 30s to improve links to London.  It was greatly expanded during WWII, and again during the North Sea oil boom years of the 70s when three helicopter terminals were built.

But Aberdeen Airport has recently undergone something of a renaissance with a new £10 million, 124 metre extension to the main runway that will enable much larger aircraft to use the facilities.   It is thought that the anticipated quarter of a million additional passengers will bring in another £6 million to the local economy. 

Byron Buckett, the maintenance manager and owner of Ground Fleet Support (GFS) provides the support for Servisair, BAA and the Aberdeen Aircraft Cleaning Company at Aberdeen airport.   He started GFS nearly five years ago after negotiating the contract with Servisair, which found that relinquishing the maintenance contract to GFS made more financial sense than employing their own maintenance team.

 “We certainly have a busy schedule, usually in excess of 40 hours of pure maintenance work a week.   We keep the de-icers, ramp units, luggage loaders, tractor units and the high loaders for container loading in good working order.  The airport vehicles have a hard life, and wear and tear has to be kept under constant control, as well as undertaking the regular scheduled maintenance work.   The hydraulics on these vehicles are in continuous use, and replacement hoses are one of the most common repairs I have to undertake,” Byron Buckett says.   “At first I just used Pirtek simply as a matter of convenience.   I could remove a damaged hose, take it over to the Pirtek trade counter round the corner, and it would be made on the spot while I enjoyed a cup of tea.   But as I’ve got to know them I’ve realised they could provide a big chunk of my other regular maintenance parts.   They now provide all my hydraulic hoses, the stainless steel hoses, motors, valves and all sorts of fittings.   They provide an excellent service and are always there for the odd emergency call out as well.   I can cope with the demands of the airport because I know if I have Pirtek backing me up when I need help.”

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