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Southwest Airlines protested airworthiness directive designed to prevent engine failures

While a National Transportation Safety Board investigation is still underway, NTSB officials confirmed that the uncontained engine failure aboard Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 was the result of a fan blade breaking from a crack near the fan's hub. The failure is similar to one that occurred on another Southwest flight in September 2016. ( More...

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Under the AD, engines with over 15,000 cycles since their last shop visit would have had to inspected within 6 months, and engines with fewer than 15,000 cycles would have had 18 months to be inspected. At the time of the accident, this engine had 10,000 cycles on it. It probably wouldn't have mattered.
Torsten Hoff 7
"SWA does NOT support the CFM comment on reducing compliance time to 12 months. SWA estimates there are 732 engines in the SWA population. Compliance time of 18 months will be needed to schedule and complete the required ultrasonic inspections. CFM's risk assessment... did not take credit for the number of fan blades already inspected in the fleet and the findings rate. SWA requests this risk assessment be updated to make a more data-informed AD mandated compliance time."

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allench1 7
I just looked at all recent quotes, wow you are one condescending person. I remember you. why don't you just relax and TRY to be less condescending to others. have a nice day
bbabis 6
Too many wrong statements for me to put any faith in this article. #1 is that this was an uncontained engine failure. No, this was an uncontained cowling failure. The last sentence is the most correct. "But investigators have not yet determined the exact cause."
ran3114 8
What ever happened to the concept of "passenger and crew safety first"?
ran3114 0
"Upon" my word you are a clever one!
joel wiley 2
They went out with "coffee, tea, or milk?"
flyer737sw 5
The only reason Southwest wanted a longer timeline is they felt the AD could have been more specific and thourough. Therefore Swa had proposed that their current maintenance practice of doing an ultrasonic inspection every 3,000 cycles on all fan blades over an 18-month period in the -700/-800 Fleet was preferred over doing a one-time inspection in 12 months on only specific blades. It was thought that this approach would increase safety, reduce risk, and maintain compliance even better than what was proposed. Just to set the record straight folks
David Vega 4
The article's intent is to blame Southwest Airlines for SWA 1380's accident. No correlation between protesting an unachievable inspection rate and the SWA 1380 accident.
roberto dupre 2
Lawyers in the upcoming lawsuit against SWA are already salivating over that refusal to comply...
What refusal? The AD was never issued, so they could refuse to comply. They were finalizing the AD, and CFM asked for less time for lower cycle engines, and SWA asked for more time. It's all a normal part of an AD issuance.
roberto dupre -2
Do agree Steven but the Judge may not see it that way.
Time will tell
carl ziegler 1
The AD that just came out establishes a starting inspection at 30000 Cycles (not hours). So it will be mostly high time engines to start with. As the service bulletin is the inspection criteria, until that is viewed, we wont really know if CFM/FAA is targeting the blade times or engine times. You could have a low time blade set and high time engine and vice versa.
matt jensen 1
ran3114 1
"Upun" my word you are a clever one!
chalet 1
SWA rejected an inspection directive but nobody says a word about the liability and responsibility of CFM as the engine maker. If this is an undetectable defect they should have redesigned the damn fan and the airlines should be replacing them already. What are they waiting for, a catastrophy taking the lives of 100-180 passengers. The Good Lord forbids but should that happen SWA, CFM and who knows what else would be facing BILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN LAWSUITS.
It's not an undetectable defect, it's a defect that happens with use, and occasionally happens between maintenance cycles and is missed. It's usually caught, but worldwide, among all the engines flying on various types, there are, on average, 5-6 engine failures like this a year.
chalet 1
What mayerial are fan blades made of. Can ultrasonic tests be used to inspected for cracks.
That's how they're normally inspected, every few thousand cycles. If I remember correctly they're a titanium-nickel alloy, but I never did work with the blades.
sharon bias -3
So Your Honor, SWA protested the timeline for inspecting engines for the failure that occurred on Flight 1380. They felt it was too little time. Judge: OK, that will be an additional $10 million in damages to EACH 149 passengers. The cost of hiring additional inspectors and adjusting flight schedules to inspect the planes in a timely manner would have been way less than this accident is going to cost them. Although the accident may be covered by insurance and additional inspections not.
Except for a couple really minor facts like they were against the timeline CFM wanted, not the FAA, and that this engine might not have been inspected, or had anything to find if it had been.
sparkie624 3
News stated that each passenger was going to get a $5000 check. Anyone who accepts this offer probably will not be eligible in the law suit.
Does this company have any fault it the matter? Are they inspecting engines at this facility? Just asking because I don't know the responsibility of the maintenance outsourcing.. Standard Aero

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Under the AD there's no guarantee they would have checked this engine before the accident anyway. It had less than 15,000 cycles on it since the last shop visit.
chalet -9
Less tan 15k hours and having a potentially terrible diffect already. Think about it.
Less than 15,000 CYCLES. There's a really big difference. And it's 10,000 cycles since the last shot visit, not since it was a new engine.
chalet 1
Got it.
Brent Bahler 3
The NTSB does not - and neverdid - issue directions. It has no regulatory authority.
comicpilot 3
1 person has died on board a SWA airplane in their history.. The guy in 2000 who was trying to attached the flight crew doesn't count. Nor does the child in MDW in 2005 as sad as that was. But you Don't get that safety record by luck and rolling the dice.. Besides that, SWA also is the ONLY.. yes the ONLY US carrier that does NOT rape you for bag and change fees. I really hope you do not work in this industry.
Please, do not let facts get into the way of emotions. Who needs a hug?


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