Southwest Airlines: new Lufthansa Technik customer in North America Further co-operation conceivable
For the major U.S. carrier Southwest Airlines (SWA), Lufthansa Technik AG (LHT) has undertaken a consulting project aimed at improving the airline`s maintenance management.
The goal is to optimize maintenance of its entire fleet and to identify potentials for improvement and ways to reduce costs. With its current fleet of over 300 Boeing 737s expected to grow to as many as 500 aircraft over the long term, Southwest is LHT`s second-largest North-American customer in the area of customer engineering.
Southwest Airlines is planning to adopt for its own fleet as many elements as possible of the LHT maintenance program. “Working with Lufthansa Technik will enable us to concentrate more fully on our core competencies and lower costs by optimizing our overall maintenance program,” explains Dave Fisher, Director Maintenance Contracts, from SWA. The project is under way at the Southwest Airlines maintenance center in Dallas, where LHT engineers from Frankfurt are already at work.
The first step consists in analyzing the airline`s various operating conditions with a view to determining which parts of the LHT maintenance concept it can most advantageously adopt. The analysis includes, for example, comparing existing maintenance intervals and contents as well as applying of latest computer techniques. This in turn could provide a basis for possible expansion of the LHT/SWA collaboration.
Experts from both companies are already collaborating effectively and in a spirit of mutual trust, reports Wolfgang Diefenbach, LHT`s General Manager Marketing & Sales for North America: “We are very pleased to receive this vote of confidence in our engineering services. This is particularly gratifying as SWA is an airline that has already been very successful in optimizing its flight operations while maintaining a first-class reputation for reliability and safety.”
Lufthansa Technik offers its customers a broad range of products in the area of customer engineering. For instance, its maintenance-management service (MMS) program provides technical services such as developing and evaluating maintenance programs, assessing the effects of manufacturers` recommendations, and ensuring its customers` compliance with civil-aviation authority directives. The growing need for experience and know-how in the domain both of flight operations and maintenance practice, which LHT possesses, plus the strong demand for customized solutions have led in recent years to a continuous broadening of the range of LHT`s services.
Over 30 customers worldwide - scheduled passenger airlines as well as charter and cargo carriers - are currently availing themselves of the support of Lufthansa Technik`s customer engineering, which embodies its more than 40 years of experience in servicing the fleet of Lufthansa German Airlines.