UPS, home based in Louisville, KY, has had a remarkable career in the aviation business. They have some incredible employees, but remember it takes a college degree to fly a plane, but only a high school diploma to fix one...a reassurance to those of us who fly commercial routinely in our jobs.
After every flight, UPS pilots fill out a form, called a 'gripe sheet,' which tells mechanics about problems with the aircraft. The mechanics correct the problems, document their repairs on the form, and then pilots review the gripe sheets before the next flight.
Never let it be said that ground crews lack a sense of humor. Here are some actual maintenance complaints submitted by UPS pilots (marked with a P) and the solutions recorded (marked with an S) by maintenance engineers.
By the way, UPS is the only major airline that has never, ever, had an accident with loss of life.**
P: Left inside main tire almost needs replacement. S: Almost replaced left inside main tire. * P: Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough. S: Auto-land not installed on this aircraft. * P: Something loose in cockpit S: Something tightened in cockpit * P: Dead bugs on windshield. S: Live bugs on back-order. * P: Auto pilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200 feet per minute descent... S: Cannot reproduce problem on ground. * P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear. S: Evidence removed. * P: DME volume unbelievably loud. S: DME volume set to more believable level. * P: Friction locks cause throttle levers to stick. S: That's what friction locks are for. * P: IFF inoperative in OFF mode. S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode. * P: Suspected crack in windshield. S: Suspect you're right. * P: Number 3 engine missing. S: Engine found on right wing after brief search * P: Aircraft handles funny. S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right and be serious. * P: Target radar hums. S: Reprogrammed target radar with lyrics. * P: Mouse in cockpit. S: Cat installed. * And the best one for last * P: Noise coming from under instrument panel. Sounds like a midget pounding on something with a hammer. S: Took hammer away from midget
*** According to Wikipedia, here is a list of major incidents and accidents involving a UPS airplane. No loss of like, so I am going to start flying UPS from now on.
On September 11, 1998, Flight 744, N316UP, a Boeing 767-300 suffered substantial damage after running off the runway at Ellington Field from Louisville International Airport. The airport was experiencing a tropical storm at the time of the landing, the aircraft was unable to stop on a wet runway with a strong tailwind. After running off the runway, the aircraft's right landing gear broke off and the right engine separated from the wing. The aircraft was put back into service after major repairs.
On June 7, 2005, Flight 6971, N250UP, a McDonnell Douglas MD-11 suffered substantial damage after a landing gear collapse at Louisville International Airport from Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. The crew accidentally lowered the nose of the aircraft too fast, putting too much pressure on the front landing gear. The aircraft was put back into service after a $10 million repair.
On February 8, 2006, Flight 1307, N748UP, a Douglas DC-8 was destroyed by fire at Philadelphia International Airport from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Just before landing the crew reported a smoke detector was going off in the cargo hold. After landing, the cargo hold of the aircraft caught on fire, the source of the fire was never found.