oxford, Maine

Oxford Aviation expects to resume operations after FAA rescinded certification last month

by Peter McGuire, Sun Media Wire Aug. 1, 2013

OXFORD — Oxford Aviation expects to resume full operations early next week, pending a positive management review from the Federal Aviation Administration, which forced the company to temporarily suspend part if its operations last month.

In a statement released July 26, the FAA said it had "rescinded Oxford Aviation's Operations Specifications on July 18, 2013, which prohibits the company from performing aircraft maintenance. Oxford Aviation has temporarily suspended its operations, pending an FAA review of its management personnel."

Oxford Aviation at the Oxford County Regional Airport
Oxford Aviation is headquartered at the Oxford County Regional Airport located off Number Six Road in Oxford.                Peter McGuire photo

Operations Specifications are part of the FAA's Part 145 Repair Certification required for Oxford Aviation to preform structural and mechanical repairs and maintenance on aircraft.

The FAA has the authority to rescind the Operations Specifications if a company is not complying with its regulations.

FAA spokesperson Arlene Salac would not disclose what prompted the revocation of Oxford Aviation's Operations Specifications and would not elaborate on the matter or speculate when Oxford Aviation would be back in compliance with FAA regulations.

Oxford Aviation, off Number Six Road, specializes in interior and exterior aircraft refurbishment as well as mechanical repairs, according to its website.

Founded in 1989, the company has 60 employees who work in the company's 40,000-square-foot facility at the Oxford County Regional Airport.

Speaking Tuesday at the company's headquarters, owner and President James Horowitz said he had received assurance from the FAA that the company's Operations Specifications would be restored Monday, Aug. 5.

"It will be resolved on Monday when they process our information that has been requested," Horowitz said. "I've been told that will satisfy their needs and our (Part) 145 will be reinstated."

Horowitz also declined to comment on why the FAA had rescinded its specifications.

"The FAA does not comment on those types of things and neither do we," Horowitz said. He called the action "a pretty insignificant story."

According to the online FAA repair station database, Oxford Aviation's Part 145 certification permits it to perform work on the power plant, propeller and airframe of aircraft.

The company's certification allows it to operate on a "limited" FAA rating, which authorizes it to work only on certain types of frames and engines, according to a repair station consumer guide put out by the National Air Transportation Association.

Oxford Aviation's website advertises a number of maintenance services, including annual inspections, engine exchanges, window replacements, major and minor repairs and replacements.

Horowitz said the company was waiting for a "technical returning to service authorization" that pertained to a small number of its clients before resuming maintenance operations.

"We expect and have been assured that we'll have this resolved early next week," Horowitz said.

"We had a director of maintenance who was terminated," Horowitz said. "We have rehired our prior director of maintenance. He's on vacation and, when he returns on Monday, we will be satisfying the requirements. It's as simple as that."

Oxford Aviation's other services, such as painting, upholstery and cabinetry work, had not been affected by the FAA's order and there had been no permanent layoffs at the company, Horowitz said.