With record-breaking temperatures topping 100 degrees F in much of the U.S., on July 5 the FAA sent airport managers a copy of Airport Certification Information Bulletin (ACIB) 11-13, reminding Part 139 airport certificate holders – and flight crews - to keep a close eye open for pavement buckling on runways and taxiways.
The bulletin said, “When required by unusual conditions, such as construction activities or meteorological conditions, that might affect air carrier operations,” operators should conduct extra inspections of paved areas to check for pavement blow-ups and debris that could damage aircraft or cause a pilot to lose directional control. The bulletin also reinforces the need to inspect the airport immediately following an aircraft accident or incident and maintain records of any and all special inspections for 12 calendar months. While the warning applies specifically to Part 139 air carrier certified airports, operators at any airport experiencing sustained high temperatures could benefit from these suggestions.
A Hawker Beechcraft Premier recently sustained damage at a Midwestern airport when the left main landing gear struck a section of separated pavement, destroying the tire and part of the landing gear structure.