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Air Baltic completes first in-house A220 C-check

Latvian carrier Air Baltic has completed its first scheduled C-check on an Airbus A220, after deviating from a previous policy of outsourcing maintenance by opting to conduct the work in-house.

The airline says the base maintenance check on its first A220-300 (YL-CSA) – delivered in November 2016 – included a number of modifications "necessary to further improve the [aircraft's] reliability".

Another six Air Baltic A220s are scheduled for C-checks during the winter 2019-20 season.

C-checks are mandated for the Pratt & Whitney PW1500G-powered twinjet – previously known as the Bombardier CSeries – after 8,500 flight hours, the airline notes.

Cirium fleets data shows that Air Baltic has 20 A220-300s in service and 30 on order. Options and letters of intent span a further 30.

The airline's fleet also includes eight Boeing 737 Classics and 12 Bombardier Q400 turboprops. But these aircraft are scheduled to phased out by 2023.

Base maintenance for 737s and Q400s has been contracted out to third-party MRO providers.

Senior vice-president technical operations Andris Vaivads states that it was a "logical step" to establish in-house base maintenance capabilities for the A220 as the airline moves toward a single-type fleet.

He says the in-house maintenance operation is "more cost and time effective".

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