Millennium Post

3 of our Dreamliners hit by US regulator's directive: Air India

Air India on Monday said three of its Dreamliner planes have been affected due to the US aviation regulator FAA's airworthiness directive over an engine defect in the Boeing 787-800 aircraft but maintained that the issue will be resolved in the next two weeks without grounding of the planes. 

"We all are affected by this directive. Three of our Dreamliner aircraft are affected and need immediate attention as a result of the FAA directive. However, it will not disrupt flights. We have some time to fix the issue," An Air India official said.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration's Airworthiness Directive (AD), "this AD requires revising the airplane flight manual (AFM) to provide the flight crew a revised fan ice removal procedure and a new associated mandatory flight crew briefing to reduce the likelihood of engine damage due to fan ice shedding." Air India, the Government-owned carrier with 21 B787-800s in its fleet, is currently the third largest operator of the Dreamliner aircraft in the world after Japan's All Nippon Airways (46) and Qatar Airways (28) aircraft. 

Air India has, however, been grappling with technical glitches and other malfunction with Dreamliner aircraft since their induction in the fleet over three year ago. "This AD also removes certain dispatch relief. For airplanes with certain engines, this AD also requires reworking or replacing at least one engine," it said.

FAA said that the AD was prompted by a recent engine fan blade rub event that caused an in-flight non-restartable power loss. "We are issuing this AD to prevent susceptibility to heavy fan blade rubs, which could result in engine damage and a possible in-flight non-restartable power loss of one or both engine," FAA said. The Air India official also said that the exercise on the three aircraft will be completed in the maximum two weeks time.
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