• search

US board urges new checks of some Airbus rudders

Written by: Staff
|

WASHINGTON, Mar 25 (Reuters) US safety investigators issued an urgent recommendation on Friday for new rudder inspections on certain Airbus jetliners.

The recommendation to the Federal Aviation Administration covers A300-600 aircraft, a wide body jet used in passenger and cargo service. The National Transportation Safety Board estimates 400 A300-600 models are in service worldwide.

The recommendation for checks of the rudder's composite skin stemmed from an inspection of a FedEx Corp. A300-600 rudder after it was damaged during maintenance last November.

''The board noted that this incident might have applicability to a more serious rudder separation that occurred last year,'' investigators said.

''The board believes that this urgent recommendation, if acted upon quickly, will go a long way to prevent a catastrophic failure of the rudder,'' said Mark Rosenker, the acting safety board chairman.

Airbus notified airlines three weeks ago of potential problems with the rudder's inner skin and urged inspections within six months or 500 flights. But the safety board wants the checks immediately and wants the FAA to make them mandatory.

In addition to FedEx, No. 1 American Airlines also flies the A300 series. An American A300-600 crashed in New York in November 2001, killing 265 people, after its tail fin snapped off.

Investigators mainly centered on the pilot's aggressive rudder use in that crash and rudder system design. But a good part of the probe focused on the durability of composites and other materials used in construction of the tail fin. No problems were found.

A rudder is a vertical panel on the back edge of the tail fin that swings from side to side to help maintain lateral control of an aircraft.

Reuters DH VP0430

For Daily Alerts
Get Instant News Updates
Enable
x
Notification Settings X
Time Settings
Done
Clear Notification X
Do you want to clear all the notifications from your inbox?
Settings X
X
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. This includes cookies from third party social media websites and ad networks. Such third party cookies may track your use on Oneindia sites for better rendering. Our partners use cookies to ensure we show you advertising that is relevant to you. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on Oneindia website. However, you can change your cookie settings at any time. Learn more