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The uncomfortable truth about aircraft tear-down

QUESTION: Do you want to have aircraft at the very end of their airworthiness making their last ever flight over your kids’ school, your home, your town?

FACT: RiverOak’s business plan states they will run a “tear down” operation at Manston – taking out the valuable parts for resale.

FACT: These aircraft will be coming from any and every corner of the world.

FACT: By definition, these aircraft will be at the end of their useful lives, at the end of their airworthiness.

FACT: By definition, their flight into Manston will be the last flight they ever make.

FACT: Depending on the wind direction, the flight path will bring these planes in to Manston over central Herne Bay about one-third of the time, and over central Ramsgate about two-thirds of the time.

So, do you want to have aircraft at the very end of their air worthiness making their last ever flight over your kids’ school, your home, your town?

Here’s an analogy. Joe Bloggs’ car is on its last legs. He doesn’t reckon it will make it through its next MOT, so decides he’ll take it the local scrapyard to see if he can get a few quid for it. Just as he’s about to set off, he notices that one of the headlights has blown. Does Joe hop on his bicycle, pop down to Halfords for a new bulb and fit it before going to the scrapyard? Maybe, maybe not. The point is that if ever anyone is going to cut corners, it will be on that last journey.

Now can someone remind me – RiverOak are planning on tearing down how many planes a year? How often will we be playing Russian roulette?

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  1. Michael Smith

    We do not want this to happen, it would and could put peoples lives in danger

  2. Dave Britton

    There has already been an incident at Manston, a 747 was stripped down and then broken up for scrap, when the scrap arrived at a yard in Medway the yards gieger counters detected radioactive depleted uranium balance weights within the scrap and turned it away.
    So what did the scrappers do ? They returned the skip to Manston and parked alongside the road.
    This took place during a meeting of the Manston liason committee where several councillors were present. DONT THEY EVER LEARN ????

  3. This article is ridiculous. Aircraft parts must be certified and tagged prior to installation. Any material coming off this aircraft would be considered “As-Removed” and only airworth if inspected and tagged by an FAA 145 Repair Station or Airline with Maintenance Authority.

    I’ve dealt with aircraft teardowns, parts and material coming off end-of-life aircraft and we routinely purchase and recertify aircraft in this manner and have done so for the past 30 years.

    Cut the fear and doom. Especially when you don’t know what you’re talking about.