Let’s face it … aircraft logbooks are terrible. If you’ve never seen a set of aircraft logbooks for even a relatively new $20, $30, $40, or more million-dollar jet you’re in for a shock! If you have seen them, then you know that logbooks and the records inside them are:
* found only in paper form
* many are hand-written
* put together in various shapes, sizes, and formats
* falling apart due to wear and tear
* unorganized and chaotic
* difficult to understand
* usually missing critical information
* never appear to have any value
The last one, of course, is far from the truth. Logbooks are, in fact, worth a substantial percentage of the aircraft’s overall value because only the aircraft’s logbooks represent an FAA accepted record of the aircraft’s history and airworthiness.
So, if logbooks are so valuable, why do we continue treating them so poorly? The answer is … we shouldn’t. We need to embrace logbooks and bring them into the fold of our world of business aviation.
We take pride in the sophistication of the aircraft we operate, in our diverse capabilities, and in the professional way we conduct business. So why shouldn’t aircraft logbooks be included in this way of being? To do so is so simple … Aircraft Logbooks should be:
Standardized … like most of the things we have and use in our industry
Cared for … and given the respect, such a valuable resource is worthy of, and
Insured … like any other asset we depend on.
Once we start giving logbooks the care and respect they should have, our trouble with logbooks will begin to diminish. And that’s good for everyone.
See “Why Do We Continue to Use Paper Aircraft Records in the Digital Age” in BAR Commentary for more information on the trouble with aircraft logbooks.