The 767 – One AMT’s Perspective
FedEx Express began bringing B767s into our fleet last September, which I consider a milestone event for us Aircraft Maintenance Technicians (AMTs). The FedEx Express trunk fleet includes not only other Boeing types such as the B777, the B757, and until it was recently retired, the B727, but also Airbus aircraft (A300 and A310s) and McDonnell Douglas aircraft (MD10s and MD11s), too.
I’ve worked for the past 22 years in the Avionics Component Shop in Memphis and have always liked the challenge of examining a problem and figuring out the best way to fix it. My job allows me to do that every single day. Our shop works on aircrafts’ batteries, flight data recorders, emergency locating transmitters, and electronic flight bags.
The new B767 components consist of the latest and greatest technology and it will be fun to work on something so modern.
I think the B767 will be a wonderful new workhorse in our fleet. I love the fact that the airframe is American made. The fuel savings this bird offers is good for the company’s bottom line and is also good for the environment. And because it’s a Boeing aircraft and FedEx Express AMTs are familiar with the Boeing airframe and electronics, the maintenance learning curve on this new aircraft should be relatively low. AMTs will know from the outset they need a certain wrench or another specific tool. There will be enough differences with this new aircraft, though, to make it interesting.
One of the best things about this aircraft maintenance-wise is that no one has touched them before. The only modifications that will have been made to the B767s are the ones that we’ve made. That means the technical manuals will be more accurate and the “unexpected factor” goes way down. The biggest challenge will be managing the entire lifecycle of these new aircraft, which is a challenge for any fleet type.
A brand new aircraft, equipped with the latest technology, will be maintained by a team of technicians trained in continual improvement with instant access to accurate data for effective maintenance and repair. All of this enhances the reliability of the B767. Greater aircraft reliability means more on-time departures which ultimately contribute to the best possible service for FedEx customers.
FedEx never stands still when there’s an opportunity to perfect our service. The B767 represents another step forward in ensuring we fulfill the Purple Promise to our customers. It’s no wonder that when people ask where I work, I still poke my chest out a bit when I say, “I work for FedEx.”