AOG (Aircraft on Ground) is an aviation term referring to the situation where an aircraft is out of service or grounded due to technical reasons. AOG also refers to any aviation parts or materials which require urgent replacement in order to return the aircraft to service. It could be a simple part or an aircraft engine which must be delivered to where the aircraft is located in the shortest possible time to minimize time on the ground.
Reasons for AOG
There could be multiple reasons for grounding the aircraft. Aircraft require routine technical checks to ensure airworthiness. For instance, A-Checks are conducted every 500 flight hours and B-Checks are required every 3 months. Aircraft failing to pass these inspections are grounded. It could be a minor issue - one of the many thousands of parts that make up an aircraft could fail. If an airline does not have the required spare part in stock to service the aircraft, AOG services should be called on immediately to make the replacement part available. However, it is not always possible to predict when an AOG is going to happen - it is quite often an unexpected event.
Consequences of AOG
AOG situations cause disruptions to flight schedules and inconvenience passengers and cargo owners. Besides, financial consequences for airlines can be quite significant. According to the IAG Cargo Magazine, AOG can cost an airline 150,000 US Dollars per hour. These numbers start to make better sense once you understand what airlines typically go through in an AOG situation:
Aircraft maintenance costs
From the smallest details to an aircraft engine, any broken part of the aircraft must be fixed quickly. Costs include flying components and engineering teams to where the aircraft is located and the cost of the diagnostics / maintenance work.
Grounding an aircraft means the airline cannot carry passengers or cargo until the aircraft is functional again. This puts a stress on the airlines finances because regardless of whether you fly an aircraft or not, by simply owning one you keep incurring fixed costs for insurance, parking, leasing, etc. so it makes a good business sense to keep your aircraft flying.
Passengers waiting on the tarmac or disembarking from an AOG-struck aircraft must be compensated with vouchers, ticket refunds and/or accommodation until the next available flight.
Delayed air cargo
Delayed shipments can cause a string of “knock-on” effects: missing connection flights and longer transit times throw supply chains of all involved into disarray, causing unwarranted liability issues between shippers and consignees. The stakes are even higher when you are dealing with perishable cargo or live animals.
How Can We Help When an AOG Occurs?
At XSCALE we understand that keeping your aircraft in the air is critical to your business. Through our offices in Tashkent, London and Singapore, as well as our exclusive membership in Aviation Logistics 365, we bring together resources, specialist knowledge and expertise to operate in this complex supply chain area.
Being ISO 9001:2015 certified and an IATA-accredited Cargo Agent, we believe in exceptional service, global availability 24x7x365 and ability to mobilize quickly in response to our customers’ AOG requirements anywhere in the world.