On July 21, Lufthansa Technik’s new facility in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico has started operations with its first overhaul line on time. Just 11 months after ground-breaking in August 2014 the first Airbus A320 from US-carrier Spirit Airlines arrived for a C-Check.
Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico (LTPR) is FAA Part 145 and EASA Part 145 approved. Initial customers are Airbus A320 family aircraft operators, Spirit Airlines and JetBlue Airways, from the Americas. A second overhaul line is planned to be operational in November, followed by three more lines until early 2017 to include Boeing 737 by then.
“Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico has been founded to strengthen significantly our service portfolio in the Americas, one of the most important MRO markets worldwide. I would like to thank Governor Alejandro García-Padilla and his team for their comprehensive support and the excellent partnership which we could establish over the past 2 years”, said Dr. Johannes Bussmann, Chairman of the Executive Board of Lufthansa Technik AG. “And of course, I also would like to thank our launching customers, Spirit Airlines and JetBlue Airways, for the trust they have set in us in the forefront of this day. With the arrival of the first A320 Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico becomes operational. Management and staff can be really proud of what they have achieved so far.”
“Today we begin to see the results of one of the most important projects of the economic agenda of this administration. Even in the midst of the fiscal situation our country is facing, we continue working to carry out those strategies which result in economic benefits for our Island. Today, this MRO is finally a reality. The agreement between the government of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and Lufthansa Technik begins to translate into work and the facility begins to offer its services. Nonetheless, this is only the beginning. We will continue to see these facilities become the economic motor of this region both because of the jobs they create and their national and international alliances. Results such as these are the ones that guarantee that Puerto Rico has the capacity to overcome our present and inherited economic situation and achieve sustainable growth, as we unite outside of political party lines and commit to radically transform the way in which our government and our economy operates”, said Governor Alejandro García-Padilla.
“We are thrilled to be Lufthansa Technik’s first customer in Puerto Rico,” said Spirit CEO Ben Baldanza. “We’ve had a long history with them as they have provided excellent support on our Airbus fleet through inventory, parts repairs and Reliability Engineering support. We’re excited about the next chapter as they provide heavy maintenance airframe support in Puerto Rico.”
“This is a fantastic moment for us”, said Elmar Lutter, CEO of Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico. “I would like to thank my team which has carefully planned and worked hard for this moment since the beginning of this project 2 years ago. Now we can focus on the next milestones which are the ramp-up of the operations, the further development of our capabilities and the constant training of our highly motivated employees. I’m sure that Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico will become an internationally acknowledged center of excellence for base maintenance services, soon.”
Currently, about 140 highly qualified employees have been trained and are working for LTPR. It is planned to grow up to a workforce of 400 in the next 2 years. The facility extends over a total area of 215,000 square feet. In its final configuration it will offer five lines for base and heavy maintenance checks (C-, IL- and D-checks), along with other maintenance work on narrow body aircraft. By using state-of-the-art technologies it is even possible to paint aircraft in the hangar while overhaul work is being conducted in parallel.
Thanks to the geographic location of Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico in Aguadilla, on the west edge of Puerto Rico, it is within flying distance of all Airbus A320 family aircraft in the Americas.
Source: Lufthansa Technik.