The US Federal Aviation Administration issued an emergency airworthiness directive calling for the inspection of Boeing 777s, following two separate incidents involving Pratt & Whitney 4000 engines on Saturday.
“We reviewed all available safety data,” the FAA said in a statement. “Based on the initial information, we concluded that the inspection interval should be stepped up for the hollow fan blades that are unique to this model of engine, used solely on Boeing 777 airplanes.”
In the US, one of the engines on a United Airlines Boeing 777 exploded shortly after it took off from Denver en route to Honolulu.
The United aircraft’s engine explosion scattered debris over a Denver suburb of Broomfield. Nobody was injured.
Luckily, with today’s engines, this test is done:
The chicken gun test (and yes, we all know the apocrypha about British Rail borrowing it).
The point being not that an engine must survive a bird strike or other such failure. Rather, that it doesn’t power thousands of strips of superfast nickel turbine blades through the passenger cabin, fuel tanks or control surfaces…….