Warning issued to airlines flying Airbuses
The Dominion Post
An emergency safety directive has been issued to airlines using twin-engine Airbus A320s after both engines on one stalled over the Mediterranean, just 18 days after an Air New Zealand A320 crashed killing all seven on board.
However, an Air New Zealand spokesman said its A320s, including the one that crashed, are equipped with rival International Aero Engine V2500s plant.
The directive from European and United States aviation authorities, comes as mystery continues as to the cause of the Air New Zealand crash off the coast of southern France.
Five New Zealanders and two Germans died in the November 28 crash during a test flight.
On December 14, an Air France Airbus A321 a stretched version of the A320 suffered a double engine stall as it climbed out of Tunisia, bound for Paris.
Passengers heard loud bangs from both of its CFM International 56 engines and the stalling occurred as pilots eased back on power.
The engines are designed to not close down on stalling and power was quickly resumed. The aircraft made a safe emergency landing.
The safety directive calls for airlines with about 1500 Airbuses to urgently check and repair high-pressure compressor fans on CFM 56s on A318s, A319s, A320s and A321s.
European authorities said that since April last year, six different engines used by three operators had stalled. These were followed by the Air France incident.
American authorities warned such stalling problems "could prevent continued safe flight or landing".
Meanwhile, on January 13 the French crash authority, the Bureau d'Enquetes et d'Analyses (BEA), will hold a Paris meeting in a bid to move the Air New Zealand investigation forward.
Aviation sources say it is coming under pressure to come up with an explanation as the A320 is a European and North American commuter workhorse. Concern was already mounting following an October incident with a Qantas Airbus A330 that lost altitude after going into a dive, injuring 40.
A safety directive on software was issued for A320s last month.
The Air New Zealand plane plunged into the sea without issuing a distress call. Six of the seven bodies have been recovered but are still undergoing dna testing for identification.
Does anybody know more about this? About the dual engine stall and about the safety directive?