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FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 6:15 am

CNN has just reported that FAA has ordered at least 1400 Boeing 737/747/757 for fuel tank inspection that could cause major explosion.

More details to come.

News reported at 1700ET on August 30, 2002.
 
AFC_Ajax00
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 6:30 am

Thats a sh*tload of planes! From all US airlines I presume?
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sebolino
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 7:31 am

That's scary.
What's more scary is that the planes sold outside US won't be checked right now.
 
Tom in NO
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 7:38 am

ABC News says it has to do with the fuel pumps.

Tom in NO (at MSY)
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Rick767
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 7:39 am

"What's more scary is that the planes sold outside US won't be checked right now."

Not necessarily. The JAA are very likely to follow up with just as tight a timescale for the checks as the FAA. The FAA directive requires checks to be made within 4 days from now (not immediately).
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Rick767
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 7:43 am

The suspect parts are the fuel pumps, with an issue surrounding wires places too close to a rotor, which could lead to explosion (though only minor incidents have so far occured).

Aircraft in question had fuel pumps installed by a Californian company between January and April.
I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...
 
ryu2
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 7:45 am

Does this have anything to do with CI 611 or TW 800 in-flight explosions? (fuel tanks suspected)
 
b757300
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 8:03 am

Again? Seems like this happens every 9-12 months ever since TWA 800.
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Arsenal@LHR
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 8:19 am

If the 757 is affected by this suspect fuel pump, isn't the 767 also affected, or does it have a different fuel system?

In Arsene we trust!!
 
Big777jet
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 8:24 am

Gov't Orders Boeing Jets Inspected for Faulty Fuel Pumps

By LAURIE KELLMAN
.c The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (Aug. 30) - The government ordered U.S. airlines Friday to inspect 1,440 Boeing jets to determine if they have a potentially faulty fuel pump that could cause an explosion.

The Federal Aviation Administration's emergency order stressed that no serious incidents have been linked to problems with the pumps, which are made by Hydro-Aire Inc. of Burbank, Calif., and were installed in January and April on Boeing 737s, 747s and 757s.

The airlines were given four days to inspect their fleets. The FAA estimated 1,250 pumps could have a problem with wires that were placed too close to a rotor and can chafe. Since one plane can have several pumps, it was not immediately clear how many aircraft might have the flaw.

Ron Wojnar, the FAA's deputy director of aircraft certification services, said any airlines that installed Hydro-Aire's pumps in the Boeing models since January are being ordered to keep enough fuel in the tanks to cover the devices even when the planes bank or encounter turbulence in flight.

''This is not an unsafe condition,'' he said, explaining that the submersion would prevent any sparks from igniting fuel vapors.

The FAA's inspection order affects 515 of the 737s, 247 of the 747s, and 678 of the 757s operated by U.S. carriers.

Foreign airlines operate about 2,100 of the jets. The FAA is sending advisories about the pumps to its counterpart agencies in those countries.

The FAA will issue a follow-up directive in a few weeks, instructing carriers to repair or replace any faulty pumps, Wojnar said.

The pumps are located in the center fuel tank under the fuselage. Some planes may also have pumps in wing tanks.

Boeing spokeswoman Liz Veridier said her company sent the airlines a bulletin Wednesday ordering the pumps replaced on 116 new planes that had been put into use this year.

Greg Ward, president of Hydro-Aire, said the problem appears to have occurred while the pumps were being assembled. Hydro-Aire, meanwhile, has X-rayed all of the pumps that had not yet been shipped to Boeing-about 150 pumps-and found about 3 percent contained the wiring problem, Ward said.

He said one pump that the company took apart after it was returned by an airline contained a wire that had been rubbed by a nearby rotor, creating concern of a potential spark.

''When you have fuel covering the pump there's no oxygen, so there can be no fire,'' he said.

Other 737s, 747s and 757s were ordered to fly only with their tanks full enough to cover the pumps until further inspections could be carried out, said Boeing's Veridier.

The problem was detected on three planes that had pumps short out and stop working, giving the crew an indication of low pressure in the tank, said FAA spokesman Les Dorr.

The British carrier easyJet sent the pump back to Hydro-Aire on Aug. 12 after the crew of one of its Boeing 737s detected low pressure, Dorr said. A week later, a Northwest Airlines 747-400 reported a low pressure indication and found the same problem, he said. A China Southern Airlines 747-400 experienced the same trouble.

The National Transportation Safety Board ruled that an explosion in the center fuel tank of TWA Flight 800 caused it to crash off the coast of Long Island in 1996. It said vapors in the partly empty tank probably were ignited by a spark in wiring.

The Paris-bound Boeing 747 exploded in a fireball at 13,700 feet, minutes after leaving John F. Kennedy International Airport. All 230 people on board were killed. ''All of our pumps that were on Flight 800 were recovered and not found to be contributors to the crash,'' Ward said.
 
OPNLguy
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 8:43 am

Here's the actual AD, straight from the FAA...

http://av-info.faa.gov/ad/PublishedADs/02-18-52.html


Southwest Airline aircraft don't use the fuel pump in question, and are unaffected by this AD.
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
FDXmech
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 8:57 am

The FAA are very big on potential wiring problems in the fuel tanks.

A couple of years ago, some airlines found evidence of fuel pump wire harness arcing in the fuel tank conduits. An AD was generated that all 727's (and some 737's) required the fuel boost pump wire harness to be inspected for chafing or signs of arcing where the wires ran through conduits. Then the harness had to be incapsulated in a teflon sheath prior to reinstalling. We usually made new harnesses rather than insert the old ones back.

Way back when at PEX, I remember an emergency AD to inspect all fuel boost pumps for a certain part or serial number. As each plane came in, this inspection had to be accomplished prior to its departing. I seem to remember a flurry of 737's arriving EWR missing a boost pump access panel or two. The panel can appear secure when in fact it's barely holding on.
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OPNLguy
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 9:48 am

A little more info on how many aircraft it may affect...

Boeing has identified 118 planes delivered this year that had a total of about 850 of the suspect pumps installed during production, a spokesperson for the manufacturer told AviationNow.com. They include 17 747s with about. 250 pumps as well as 93 737NGs and eight 757s with. 600 pumps combined.

Because the other 400 pumps could be in parts inventories as spares, they could be on any of 1,200
37NGs, 1,150 757s, or 1,020 747s in service worldwide. The FAA directive covers the 515 737s, 247 47s, and 678 757s registered in the U.S. The agency has sent the directive to its counterparts in other order.

http://www.aviationnow.com/avnow/news/channel_comm.jsp?view=story&id=news/cad0830.xml
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
Guest

RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 10:18 am

NBC Nightly News also mentioned more than 3000 jets worldwide, excluding US.
 
OPNLguy
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 10:35 am

>>>NBC Nightly News also mentioned more than 3000 jets worldwide, excluding US.

The media has a tendency to focus purely on numbers, and lose the context in the process...

Boeing said 118 aircraft had 850 of the suspect pumps installed, so that's the majority of the pumps. The remaining 400 suspect pumps are spares and may be installed on a possible eligible fleet of 3,370 aircraft (1200 737s, 1150 757s, 1020 747s). I would expect that a fair number of those 400 (spare) pumps are still on shelves and have never been installed. Thus, it's essentially a matter of checking 3,370 aircraft to see if one of a couple of hundred suspect pumps are installed. It shouldn't take long...

Don't mean to sound as I'm diminishing the purpose or intend of the AD, but it's not as if ALL 3,370 eligible aircraft are flying with suspect pumps, as the media might have folks believe.
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
hkgspotter1
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 12:37 pm

This is very not good. Lets hope they check them all before we have another TWA800.

I see it was the UK that found the problem, Easyjet noticed it first.
 
SSTjumbo
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 12:42 pm

Sorry guys, but I couldn' help but notice: ...for fuel tank inspection that could cause major explosion.

Wow, a fuel tank inspection could cause a major explosion? Never new that  Laugh out loud. Sorry to make you the butt of the joke Bigo747. Just a play on words.

Jokes aside, I am glad the FAA is inspecting these planes if there could indeed be a major problem. What kind of time frame could we expect to complete this whole inspection?
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FDXmech
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 1:08 pm

Jokes aside, I am glad the FAA is inspecting these planes if there could indeed be a major problem. What kind of time frame could we expect to complete this whole inspection?

Just a small point. The airlines inspect and fix the aircraft.
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Guest

RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 1:42 pm

SSTjumbo, "news reports" during "such events" can be false.  Big grin
 
SSTjumbo
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 1:42 pm

"Just a small point. The airlines inspect and fix the aircraft."

Detective SSTjumbo grills FDXmech as the light shines bright in FDXmech's face. SSTjumbo suddenly barks out in his gruff New Yawker accent... Enuff with the BS, answa my question, what kind of time frame woulds we be looking at for all 'da planes ta be inspected?
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tsentsan
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 2:52 pm

A China Southern Airlines 747-400 experienced the same trouble.

Are we talking about the new freighter they received recently?????
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SInGAPORE_AIR
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sat Aug 31, 2002 9:46 pm

Asian airlines are checking to see if they are affected by the potentially-exploding fuel pump.

Qantas and Virgin Blue of Australia have begun checks on their aircraft. All aircraft are flying with extra fuel said Australia's CASA.

"If the pumps are covered with fuel then there can be no sparks and explosion," Peter Gibson of CASA said, adding both airlines would inspect all pumps within the next few days.

Singapore Airlines Limited, the world's most profitable airline, said that it's subsidiary SIA Cargo was affected, while Singapore Airlines was not. A MegaArk 747-400F has the defect pump. "We've only been using it for only one or two years," said a spokesman.

"After the thorough check, we don't have to be worried now," said Chailerk Thipayachan, head of Thai Airways' engineering and technical department. Thai Airways has no defect pumps.

China Airlines is checking it's fleet.

Full information at the Reuters / Yahoo website

Information was gathered from the above hyperlinked webpage. Full informaion can be viewed by clicking the above hyperlink
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SSTjumbo
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RE: FAA Orders 1400 737/747/757 For Inspection

Sun Sep 01, 2002 1:28 am

Damn, whatever happened to the timing of my posts  Pissed!!! See how deleting one's posts can disrupt the entire flow of the universe mods? I hope you learned your lesson not to tamper with nature  Angry
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