Published: Sun, February 11, 2018
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

Pratt & Whitney engine issue could ground some planes

Pratt & Whitney engine issue could ground some planes

Three aircrafts belonging to the fleet low-priced carrier (LCC) IndiGo have been grounded due to engine related issues, the civil aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said on Saturday.

The EASA warning was necessitated by several occurrences of engine in-flight shut-down and rejected takeoff involving A320 neo family aeroplanes, said a top DGCA official.

A senior DGCA official said three Airbus A320neo planes of IndiGo have been taken out of operation because of some technical issues.

A statement from IndiGo on Saturday said the precautionary measure of grounding the three aircraft "resulted in cancellations of some of our flights".

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Airlines with A320neos that have the affected engines will have to ground some of their planes, the Journal said. Airbus has issued an Alert Operators Transmission (AOT) providing instructions "to de-pair the affected engines and discontinue [ETOPS] for aircraft fitted with affected engines", according to EASA. "We confirm of receiving the recommendations by Pratt & Whitney as well as EASA (European Aviation Safety Regulator) with respect to the A320neo aircraft powered by PW1100G - JM engines".

According to the airline officials, they have withdrawn the three A320neo planes from service w.e.f. February 9. "Some have made a decision to put off their delivery and others have not".

Last year, other problems with the GTF engine also caused delays in deliveries of the twin-engine A320neo, a more fuel-efficient version of the Airbus company's best-selling airliner.

Neither the aircraft manufacturer nor the agency disclosed what airlines are operating aircraft with affected engines.

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"In full and complete compliance with the requirements, none of GoAir aircraft have two of these engines on the same aircraft", the carrier said in a statement, adding that no aircraft is required to be grounded.

"We are honoured by the continuing confidence that SWISS has placed in Pratt & Whitney and in the GTF engine", said Chris Calio, President, Commercial Engines, Pratt & Whitney.

It was not immediately clear if the recent aft modification is related to the geared turbofan engine family's other known durability issues. On certain days, the airline had seen as many as nine of its aircraft grounded due to unavailability of spare engines leading to flight disruptions.

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