Kulula and British Airways planes have been grounded after a maintenance audit of the SAA unit they are trying to ditch
- Comair, the operator of Kulula.com and British Airways in SA, has warned of possible disruptions to its flights.
- An audit of its maintenance provider, SAA Technical, came back with "irregular findings", the airline says – and affected planes are grounded.
- Comair is setting up its own workshops after having blamed SAAT for its bad on-time record.
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UPDATE: The Civil Aviation Authority says SAA and Comair must inspect all their aircraft for safety – but that it didn’t ground anybody
Flights on Kulula.com and British Airways in South Africa may be delayed because some of its planes have been grounded, the two airlines' operator Comair warned in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
In a statement that warned of "possible disruptions" to its operations, Comair said some of its planes had been grounded by a notice from the the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) issued on Monday evening.
The notice "related to irregular findings picked up during a recent audit of our maintenance and technical service provider, South African Airways Technical (SAAT)" Comair said.
"Affected aircraft may not be flown until the necessary corrective action has been carried out."
The company could not immediately provide a copy of the notice, and the SACC could not immediately be reached for comment.
Comair did not say how many of its planes had been grounded or exactly what the impact on Kulula and British Airways flights would be, but said it had contingency plans in place.
"We are working closely with SAAT to rectify the findings and getting our flights back on schedule as soon as possible," the company said, stressing that it is committed to safety.
Comair started the process of moving its aircraft maintenance away from SAA Technical a year ago, blaming that company for its atrocious on-time record.
Last month Comair said problems with maintenance scheduling and parts inventories at SAA Technical had caused a big spike in its operating costs in the first half of its latest financial year.
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