The Perfect Peace of Mind - Preventing Hangar Rash with HangarBot
Wait, What's Hangar Rash?
While you may not see the term officially in your Pilot / Controller Glossary, hangar rash has affected pilots for decades. For those lucky enough to not be in-the-know, AOPA quotes hangar rash as "an aviation term that refers to minor incidents involving damage to aircraft that typically originate due to improper ground handling in and around a hangar, other aircraft or objects on the ground." In short, hangar rash is easily preventable, and it always strikes at the wrong time.
As the saying goes, "out of sight, out of mind", but the worst always seems to happen when you get too comfortable. From new staff working around your aircraft, to reckless maintenance crews moving throughout the hangar, it's easy to see where problems can happen, especially when one careless mistake can easily cause you more than just a headache. Whenever you're away, there's an opportunity for hangar rash to arise.
Lack of Control
Hangar rash can sneak up on you, happening in ways you might not expect. AOPA gives a freakish example, "the rotating beacon atop a Cessna 172’s tail contacted the top of a hangar doorway and cracked when the airplane’s nose strut compressed, bringing the tail up, as the aircraft was being removed from the hangar".
But one of the worse aspects of hangar rash isn't the damage, it's the responsibility. A potential problem can stem from outside companies being around your aircraft, and lack of proof can prevent your insurance from stepping in. No one wants to foot the bill and it's up to you to prove what happened.
So, What Happens Next?
Sometimes, we get lucky, and others... not so much. When speaking with Tom Buttgenbach of 1st Avenue Ventures about his experience with hangar rash, we hoped to understand what went wrong and how we could prevent it for other pilots in the future.
As is typical of hangar rash, the issue arose due to lack of control over the environment. For him, the culprit was a cleaning crew hired to clean his TBM aircraft, including the infamously soft and scratch-susceptible windshield, during their routine detailing.
No one is perfect, and, unfortunately, things can happen, albeit too easily. After a scratch was found during a maintenance check, Tom's TBM was in need of a repaired windshield, a costly fix at roughly $60,000.
After mentioning the hangar's lapse in security, as well as the lack of cameras recording inside the hangar, Tom comments on a problem found all too common with those hangaring in rural airports:
"Without having footage of the incident, insurance wouldn't cover the costs."
By not being able to provide proof of the cleaning crew's slip up, Tom was the one needing to foot the bill. Should there have been a camera mounted inside the hangar, the issue could have been less of a heavy hit. When Tom came across HangarBot, he knew it was an investment into his own peace of mind.
How Can HangarBot Help?
HangarBot gives you control over your hangar. By easily mounting with industrial magnets, HangarBot is a portable device capable of capturing and streaming video right to your cell phone. This enables live, 24/7 recording capabilities, as well as managing access to hangar doors and receiving notifications of when people are in your aircraft's vicinity.
With video recording, you're able to provide proof of incidents and track down those responsible, making insurance claims that much easier to deal with. For Tom, HangarBot was a no-brainer:
"HangarBot was purchased to monitor everything that was happening inside the hangar, not just the crew area. We use HangarBot as a monitoring tool in our cleaning and maintenance areas to maximize our coverage for potential incidents."
Most Importantly - Don't Wait!
According to Tom, the peace of mind HangarBot provides more than justifies the cost. Don't wait and risk this happening to you - we've made it as easy as possible to cover yourself in situations like this including:
- Security Bundle - Allowing you to monitor access within the hangar and receive notifications when the door is open. Combined with our remote viewing package, you'll have everything you need to monitor your hangar, anywhere.
- Cold Weather Bundle - No one likes a cold cockpit. Get your engine preheated using our cold weather bundle, and enable geofencing to start preheating automatically when you're on your way to the hangar.
- Remote Bundle - Using the HangarBot Camera Hub, as well as the motion detector and sensors, send alerts directly to your mobile device. Create automations to turn devices on and off remotely, anywhere in the world.
Don't wait - Hangar rash can happen at any time. Take a look at some of our product bundles here and make sure you're covered when hangar rash happens to you!