Sky operates overnight maintenance center at WW Regional
minutes after Big Sky Airlines evening flight from Boise
to Walla Walla is off-loaded, the aircraft is turned
over to a three-man maintenance team that gets it ready
for the next morning’s departure.
The overnight base at Walla Walla
Regional Airport is an outcome of Big Sky’s decision
earlier this year to provide daily service between Walla
Walla and Idaho’s capital city.
Stan Holm, along with John Hufford
and John Murray, are responsible for the service center.
During their overnight shift. - from
approximately 8:30 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. - Holm, Hufford
and Murray follow a 130-point guide, checking engines,
landing gear, lighting systems, instruments and a multitude
of other electrical and mechanical elements that can’t
be left to chance.
Because Big Sky uses its planes on
a rotating basis over all its schedules, Holm says the
Walla Walla team has the opportunity to see all of the
Holm explains that the crew “backs
up” Big Sky’s primary maintenance operation
in Billings, Montana, where the airline is headquartered.
“It’s a nice concept,” he said.
Port of Walla Walla officials said
they didn’t expect the Montana-based airline to
establish the local service center, but Port Commission
President Paul Schneidmiller says it’s a working
example of Big Sky’s commitment to its Walla Walla
Hufford (top), Stan Holm (cockpit) and John Murray take
charge of Big Sky airplanes at the company’s Walla
Walla Maintenance center. Photos by Lasater