Colorado Incident: Additional inspections ordered on some Boeing 777s

 Sylvie Claire / February 22, 2021


The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) ordered additional inspections on Sunday of certain Boeing 777 commercial aircraft following an engine failure on one of these aircraft over Colorado.


After consulting with my team of aviation safety experts regarding yesterday's [Saturday] engine failure on a Boeing 777 aircraft in Denver, I asked them to issue an emergency airworthiness directive that would require immediate or thorough inspections of Boeing 777 aircraft powered by select Pratt & Whitney PW4000 engines, wrote FAA official Steve Dickson in a Twitter statement.


This will probably mean that some aircraft will be taken out of service, he added.


A United Airlines Boeing 777-220, which had just taken off Saturday from Denver, Colorado, to Honolulu, Hawaii, with 231 passengers and 10 crew members, had to turn around in emergency after its right engine caught fire.


The aircraft landed safely at the Denver Airport and none of its occupants were injured.


A video filmed by a passenger of flight UA328 shows the right engine of the burning aircraft and shows that the damaged engine fairing has completely disappeared.


While the Boeing was returning to the airport, a rain of debris, some large, fell on a residential area in Broomfield, a suburb of Denver. No one was injured on the ground.


Steve Dickson indicated that a preliminary review of safety data revealed the need for additional fan blade controls for the reactor type in question.


Based on initial information, we concluded that the inspection interval should be shortened for the hollow fan blades, which exist only on this engine type, used only on Boeing 777s, the FAA official said.

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