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Cessna Renovated at Kemi-Tornio Airport – Replaced Wing Damaged in Accident

In December 2021, the media reported that a small plane was rolling at a light pole at Kemi-Tornio Airport. The Lapland Rescue Service announced at the time that the plane had been slightly damaged by a wing. There had been two people in the plane, but they had not been injured in the accident. The investigation by the Accident Investigation Board into what happened is not yet complete.

The aircraft was the Cessna 560XL Citation Excel, a 10-seater small transport plane needed to fly as a pilot and co-pilot. Authorities have been investigating the accident, and the machine was inspected for damage.

The plane was repaired at Kemi-Tornio Airport – the machine was repaired by JMC’s sister company, The Mobile Repair Team (MRT) in the UK.

Joni Nojonen, Manager of Kemi-Tornio Airport, said that a repair operation in this category is rare and he did not know if other Finnish provincial airports have ever had similar renovations.

“At least in Kemi-Tornio, no such things have been seen.”

Major damage

Karl Potts, Leader of The MRT said the hit eventually caused quite a lot of damage to the wing of the plane, which had to be completely rebuilt.

– “We needed to replace the sheet metal surfaces of the wing as well as the entire leading edge, i.e. the leading edge of the wing. The point where the machine’s fuel tanks are located was also damaged”, Potts said.

The accident also damaged the electrical control center at the rear of the machine, which has been replaced.

Disconnect the engines

The repair team arrived in Kemi in late March. The work began at the time with the manufacture of wooden scaffolding and the aircraft engines were removed during the renovation.

Potts said their team is very multi-skilled: the team speaks from aircraft repair design to component installation. In addition to Kemi-Tornio, the company currently has teams in the Americas and Austria. The scale of the projects varies, but the work done in Kemi is the largest in scale.

The global shortage of components has made it difficult to work in many areas, but this project has had little impact. It is typical in the aircraft industry that parts sometimes have to wait.

– “We order aircraft parts, such as wing dampers, directly from the aircraft manufacturer. Sometimes it takes time for parts to be made”, Karl Potts added.

The wing is built by riveting

The wing of an airplane is built by riveting. That is, the top layer of the wing “wing skin” is attached to the wing structure by riveting. Mobile Repair Team mechanics Ryan Thompson and Alex Codreanu undertook this work.

Thompson from the UK has worked in the field for 10 years, Codreanu for 13 years.

“The work is nice because it is intellectually very challenging and varied. You need to be focused and careful in all stages of your work”, Thompson described.

“You can’t get tired of the aviation industry”, Codreanu commented.

The work of the repair team moves from place to place and country to country.

“It’s nice to get to know different places and meet new people”, Thompson said.

Test at ground level first

In the opinion of the entire repair team, the Finnish posting has been in the very best a-class.

“We have been free on Sundays, and we have had a lot of things to do here. Among other things, we have been ice fishing and snowmobiling”, Potts added.

The heat of May has surprised positively.

“I thought it was always cold in Finland, but it is warmer here than in Great Britain”, Potts mentioned.

Once the renovation is complete and the engines are reassembled, the Cessna will first be tested at ground level. The first flight will be performed by the crew of the aircraft.

The plane was flown to Chester, where it was repainted and routinely serviced,” says Karl Potts.

JMC Group is a trading name of JMC Recruitment Solutions Limited, a limited company registered in England and Wales with registered number 06583787 with its registered office at Unit 1, First Floor, Exeter International Office Park, Clyst Honiton, Devon, EX5 2HL. For information only, the company JMC Group Limited is a holding company which does not trade, it is registered in England and Wales with company number 08647118 and has its registered address at Unit 1, First Floor, Exeter International Office Park, Clyst Honiton, Devon, EX5 2HL