The Boeing Co. is asking airlines to perform more frequent inspections on its planes after cracked engine-mounting pylons were found on two 767s in American Airlines' fleet.
Boeing is still formulating its request. But officials said the company wants to considerably shorten the 1,500-cycle interval between inspections of the key part that connects the engine to the 767’s wing.
American mechanics discovered a cracked pylon by chance on a 767 jet that had fewer than 500 “cycles” since its last inspection. Subsequent inspections of other 767s in American’s fleet discovered another plane with the damaged part.
A cycle is one landing and takeoff.
The pylon is a critical part because a large crack could widen under stress and an engine could fall from a wing. An engine that fell from a wing of an American DC-10 on takeoff from Chicago’s O’Hare Airport in 1979 caused the three-engine jet to crash – killing 271 passengers and crew members.