‘Tired’ Technicians May Have Led To BA Engine Fire

Open Jaw
The customer may not always be right, but they’re not always wrong either. A just-released report on a frightening incident aboard a BA A319 two years ago is a case in point.


Passengers aboard the plane were first to notice that something was wrong when an engine malfunctioned on a scheduled flight.


Fuel was pouring out of one engine and it was clearly visible to some passengers. But when they tried to tell flight attendants about the leak, crew ignored them.


The plane turned back to London with black smoke billowing from one of its engines, just minutes into its flight to Oslo. While 75 passengers and five crew were evacuated safely via the escape slides, three other passengers were treated for minor injuries.


It turned out that the plane suffered a punctured fuel pipe and a fire in the right engine. The fan cowl doors on both engines had been left unlatched in a maintenance error following scheduled overnight work. The fuel pipe was punctured when the doors broke off.


The new report from Britain’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) said aircraft technicians might have been tired, the BBC reports. The AAIB said “several passengers” recounted how they attempted to tell cabin crew about the fluid they could plainly see leaking out of the right engine.


“It is unclear when or how the passengers attempted to draw this to the attention of the cabin crew, or indeed which cabin crew members were involved, but it is evident from photographs and passenger reports that the fuel leak was clearly visible through the cabin windows,” the report said.


“Despite these cues, information regarding the fuel leak was not assimilated by the cabin crew and not passed to the flight crew as required.”


British Airways says changes have been made to prevent similar incidents.

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