Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Boeing crashes fleet of 777 aircraft after accident, Netherlands examines Boeing 747 problems


A Pratt & Whittney engine explosion on a flight from Denver to Honolulu. Photo: EPA

A United Airlines Boeing 777 aircraft with 231 passengers and 10 crew members on a flight from Denver to Honolulu, Hawaii avoided a tragic accident on Sunday after its right engine exploded at an altitude of 3,000 meters. The outer protective parts of the wreckage were dumped on a settlement in Denver.

The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NTSB) said after the first inspection of the plane that most of the damage was limited to the right engine, with damage to the plane being minimal.

Boeing has announced that it has grounded all 69 Boeing 777 aircraft with this engine currently in use. Another 59 such aircraft are garaged due to reduced air traffic during the covida-19 pandemic.

A Boeing engine exploded with more than 240 people on board, the wreckage falling on houses

The planes will be grounded until the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) completes the inspection process. Its representatives had a scheduled meeting with representatives of Pratt & Whitney and Boeing on Sunday evening local time, reports the French news agency AFP.

Shortly after the engine explosion at a plane over Denver, its fleet of 24 Boeing 777s was grounded by U.S. carrier United Airlines.

The planes are also used in Japan and South Korea. Most airlines otherwise remove the Boeing 777-200 and 777-300 models due to age and waste. The Boeing 777-200, in which the engine caught fire over Denver, was 26 years old.

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has announced that it is in contact with the US FAA. They asked for additional information on the cause of the accident so that they could take action if necessary, reports the German news agency DPA.

Japan has banned aircraft with this engine from entering the airspace

The bonnet fell in front of the apartment buildings.  Photo: EPA

The bonnet fell in front of the apartment buildings. Photo: EPA

Japan, meanwhile, has banned entry into its airspace until further notice for all Boeing 777s with a Pratt & Whitney 4000 engine. The ban includes overflights, takeoffs and landings.

The Japanese Ministry of Transport also announced that a JAL plane had to return after taking off at the airport in December due to problems with the left engine. The Japan Transportation Safety Board found that two left engine fan blades were damaged, one due to wear.

Problems with the unique blades of the Whitney & Pratt 4000 engine

In February 2018, a Boeing 777 of the same age, operated by United Airlines and also traveling towards Honolulu, suffered an engine failure. About 30 minutes before landing, the hood fell off as a result of a broken fan blade.

Because of this event in 2018, Pratt & Whitney reviewed records of inspections of all PW4000 fan blades inspected. In March 2019, the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued a directive requiring repeated inspections of fan blades on PW4000 engines.

The FAA, meanwhile, said that after reviewing the first information after the explosion over Denver, they found that “increase control over hollow engine blades that are unique to this engine model“.

The Netherlands is investigating technical problems with a Boeing 747 cargo plane

The Dutch authorities, meanwhile, said they were investigating the technical problems of the Boeing 747-400 cargo plane. On Saturday, shortly after take-off from Maastricht airport, engine parts fell off the plane. Metal particles fell into the Meerssen area and slightly injured a woman and damaged several vehicles, the Guardian reports.

Eyewitnesses said one of the engines caught fire and then the plane landed safely at the airport in Liege, Belgium. The Dutch Security Committee has announced that the investigation is at an early stage and that it is too early to conclude.

The engine of a Boeing 747 cargo plane. Photo: EPA

The engine of a Boeing 747 cargo plane. Photo: EPA





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