Avionics News July 2020 - 35

Miller was suffering from the effects of a torn rotator cuff
He leaves it up to his employees if they want to wear
and found it painful to get into the tight spots in an aircraft
masks or gloves when they work in the two hangars
while he was working on an installation. The doctors told
he leases long term and two he rents short term. His
him he needed surgery, and if he waited any longer, he
employees keep their distance from each other and
would be causing damage.
customers, and there is little walk-in traffic to worry about.
He was fortunate to have this surgery on March 6, a
But he does talk to customers who come in to discuss
week before the hospital he was using stopped all elective
installation work. There are three mechanics, 10 installers
surgery. He expects to wear a sling for eight weeks and
and four technicians working on the bench. He thinks big
work through the pain while it takes him a half-year to
repair shops with hundreds of employees have more foot
get back his full range of motion. The bad news was there
traffic and more of a chance of someone on staff to come
would be no physical therapists available to work with
down with coronavirus.
him face to face to help him restore the range of motion
McIntyre thinks there is some truth that business aviation
in his shoulder. He moved to Atlanta, Georgia, where his
will be helped in the recovery by the fact that a private
sister lives so she could help him
plane can be wiped down more
convalesce. After several weeks,
easily than an airline aircraft and
he received some virtual help
it is easier to know who has been
"IT WILL BE A LEAN YEAR
AND NOT AS GOOD AS THE
with a video conference showing
aboard a private jet.
LAST TWO OR THREE. YOU
him the therapy exercises that he
But business aviation activity
CAN'T BEAT A MANDATE
started doing on his own. As a
was falling like a rock after the
FOR BUSINESS."
result, he was making progress by
coronavirus crisis hit. For a while,
the end of April.
there were private jets flying into
KENT MCINTYRE,
It seems ironic to shut down a
the United States from abroad
Bevan Aviation
business during the coronavirus
to repatriate Americans stuck
crisis for an unrelated reason, but
overseas, but that activity tapered
it's a good time to do it with business falling off by 15%.
off by May.
He is paying his two employees during the shutdown and
During an April 21 webinar on business aviation hosted
has filed for the federal government's Payroll Protection
by Aviation Week & Space Technology magazine, Molly
Program money to meet his payroll. He had not heard back
McMillin, editor in chief of the Weekly of Business Aviation,
from the bank as of late April.
said flying activity was already down 30% in March and
New sales of avionics for installation had slowed down
headed as much as 70% down in April. She noted that
by the time he shut down the shop, but then it coincided
Textron Aviation furloughed most employees for four
with the deadline passing for the ADS-B mandate. He
weeks and then extended that time period. Embraer put in a
feels sure there will be other orders coming in for ADS-B
temporary shutdown in Brazil, and Bombardier suspended
installations, and he thinks that with the general aviation
production in Canada. Gulfstream laid off 700 employees in
aircraft already equipped (the FAA cites 96,960 as of
Savannah, Georgia, in early May. McMillin said new aircraft
June 1) there are tens of thousands more still eligible for
deliveries may fall by 15% to 50% this year.
installations. The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association
Bill Garvey, editor in chief of Business and Commercial
counts nearly 200,000 registered general aviation aircraft in
Aviation, said the National Air Transportation Association
the United States.
told him in April the falloff in business for FBOs was
"Most shops will have a thriving installation business for
between 75% and 95%. "That does make me wonder about
another two years even though the mandate came and went
the small, independent FBOs at little airports around the
in January," he said. "For me, I expect to have a thriving
country," he said. For them, "this could be devastating."
business installing ADS-B for at least another year."
At Brazos Avionics Inc. at Ellington Airport in Houston,
Texas, James E. Miller closed his shop in March for several
months but not because of the coronavirus.
Continued on following page
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Avionics News July 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Avionics News July 2020

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Avionics News July 2020 - Intro
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Avionics News July 2020 - Cover2
Avionics News July 2020 - 1
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