It was recently reported that IndiGo is grounding another 30 to 35 planes. This is being viewed as a major setback for the airline. IndiGo is not the only airline struggling in these turbulent times. Air India too has faced such issues in the past. If you’ve wondered what it takes for an aircraft to be grounded and how difficult it is to acquire grounded planes, you’ve come to the right place.
When Or Why Does A Plane Get Grounded?
When a plane gets grounded, it essentially means that it doesn’t have the required clearance for taking off. There are many reasons as to why a plane might be grounded. The duration for which the plane is grounded depends on the reason why it is grounded. A plane might be temporarily grounded if the weather is untoward or if there are issues in the air traffic control department.
It can be dangerous to fly if there is a disruption or failure in the communication system. This might lead to the grounding of planes until the issue is resolved. Security threats are also another big reason for the grounding of the plane. If an aircraft or an airport is perceived to be under threat, authorities may decide to ground planes as a precautionary measure. Pandemics or emergencies in public health might also lead to the same.
Safety concerns are probably the biggest cause of the grounding. If a plane is experiencing technical difficulties, it is safer to ground the aircraft than to risk human lives. Mark D Martin, CEO and founder of Martin Consulting, in an interview with Business Today stated that engine reliability issues are the primary cause for aircraft grounding.
How Difficult It Is To Acquire Grounded Planes?
Internal issues in an airline such as an extreme shortage of staff can also result in the airline grounding a plane. Malta-based Challenge Group is attempting to acquire planes that were used by Jet Airways. They have been out of commission for quite a while but owing to bureaucratic issues, the acquisition is proving to be taxing, financially and otherwise.
This delay in acquisition is creating other problems like scheduling issues as well as the depreciating value of the asset. According to Eshel Heffetz, who is the CEO of Challenges Airlines, the longer an aircraft is grounded, the more its condition deteriorates.
In an article published by Moneycontrol, he said that in order to make the most of its purchase, the sooner an aircraft is put to use, the more cost-effective it is. Since it plans to convert the aircraft into freight carriers, the process would take eight to 12 months. However, the mounting legal cost is making the whole process more expensive.
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