FAA to issue CFM56 engine directive after Southwest incident

FAA to issue CFM56 engine directive after Southwest incident

With oxygen masks dangling down and passengers screaming as they struggled to save the woman, the pilot's voice conveyed none of the panic rampant aboard Southwest Flight 1380. A woman sitting next to the window was partially blown out of it.

She is the first passenger on a USA airliner to die in an accident since 2009.

Pressure for the FAA to act grew after an engine on a Southwest plane blew apart on Tuesday, showering the aircraft with debris and shattering a window.

When the cabin depressurised and oxygen masks dropped from above, Marty Martinez paid $8 for onboard WiFi so he could do a Facebook Live video and say goodbye to the people he loved, according to the Daily Mail.

A female passenger died after being almost sucked out of the cabin.

NTSB investigators said passenger Jennifer Riordan was wearing her seatbelt when she was out a plane window that was shattered by debris.

One of the passengers that attempted to revive the unconscious mother of two was retired nurse Peggy Phillips. Needum declined to detail the event. But foremost, she is the bedrock of our family.

"It felt like it was free-falling going down", he said.

"I didn't know if we were going to be running into a building". Officials are also still trying to figure out how the window came out of the plane, according to The Associated Press. Fellow passengers pulled her back in and unsuccessfully attempted CPR.

Investigators said a blade that broke off mid-flight and triggered the fatal accident was showing signs of metal fatigue - microscopic cracks that can splinter open under the kind of stress placed on jetliners and their engines.

An initial investigation found evidence of metal fatigue where a fan blade had broken off, according to the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).




The engine in question is a CFM56-7B turbofan, the product of a 40-year-old joint venture between GE Aviation and France's Safran Aircraft Engines called CFM International.

The FAA proposed making the recommendation mandatory in August but never issued a final decision. Late last night, the FAA said that it will issue a directive in the next two weeks to require inspections of certain CFM56-7B engines - the type of engine that failed on the Southwest flight.

It was not immediately clear how many planes would be affected.

Other airlines commenting on last year's FAA proposal projected higher costs in time and money than regulators initially expected, because they did not closely track the fan blade.

In response, the European Aviation Safety Authority (EASA) issued a directive requiring operators of the planes to inspect specific fan blades on the CFM56-7, an engine used in some Boeing 737-700 planes, by the end of 2019.

Kelly said the plane was inspected on Sunday and nothing appeared out of order.

The blades, which sweep air backwards to help provide thrust, can be changed and repaired independently of the rest of the engine, meaning airlines that don't keep tabs have to examine more engines than anticipated, which adds time and cost.

We are deeply saddened to confirm that there is one fatality resulting from this accident.

"A piece of the engine's cover was ripped off, coming down 75 miles from the Philadelphia Airport", said NTSB chair and former 737 pilot Robert Sumwalt.

The Dallas-based carrier was not the only operator to ask for more time or suggest other changes as first the engine maker, CFM International, and then the FAA and its European counterpart proposed checks previous year for potentially flawed fan blades.

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