- Aviation watchdog will inspect structural cracks on Boeing 737 planes
- In contact with 737 NG operators, "no in-service issues reported": Boeing
- The 737 MAX, grounded in March, is not affected by this issue: Boeing
Indian operators of Boeing 737 NG planes have been told by the civil aviation regulator to check their aircraft after the US plane-maker found structural cracks in some planes. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said all Boeing 737 NG planes in India that have completed 26,000 flight cycles should be checked for the defect, news agency ANI reported.
On September 27, the DGCA's American counterpart Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said it would require operators of some Boeing 737 NG jetliners to conduct inspections for structural cracks and make repairs as needed following the discovery of cracks on a small number of planes.
The DGCA will carry out inspections for structural cracks on about 23 Boeing 737 planes, including both passenger and freight planes, operated by SpiceJet, Mint newspaper reported quoting an official with direct knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be named.
The FAA said Boeing notified it of the issue "after it discovered the cracks while conducting modifications on a heavily used aircraft." Subsequent inspections "uncovered similar cracks in a small number of additional planes", news agency Reuters reported.
Boeing said on Friday it has been in contact with 737 NG operators about the issue, but added that "no in-service issues have been reported."
The 737 NG, or Next Generation, was introduced in 1997 and is the third generation version of the best-selling Boeing airplane. The 737 MAX, which was grounded in March after two fatal crashes in five months, is not affected by this issue, Boeing said.
The FAA said it would ask operators of the NG to "report their findings to the agency immediately" after completing inspections. Boeing said "over the coming days, we will work closely with our customers to implement a recommended inspection plan for certain airplanes in the fleet."
With inputs from ANI and Reuters