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HeliTorque :: View topic - Fleet grounding for inspection question.
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HeliTorque Forum Index » Flight Safety

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Fleet grounding for inspection question.
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ALFA8C
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 9:26 am    Post subject: Fleet grounding for inspection question. Reply with quote

Guys,
At what point after an incident do manufacturers decide to ground their aircraft fleet for a mechanical inspection, if at all?
Sorry if it is an ignorant question, i'm just curious.
Many thanks.
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flip2
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't give you a definitive answer.

The manufacturer gets involved very early on in the investigation. Not only do they have a vested interest in the outcome, but their knowledge of the aircraft type is normally of the utmost importance in unraveling what happened.

There are major implications in grounding (or not grounding) a fleet. If the manufacturer grounds all the aircraft unnecessarily, there are major expenses (not only the inspections themselves, but the loss of revenue and the cost of finding alternative types to cover contracts etc.). Indirectly, it will also create a loss of confidence in the brand and could jeopardize future sales.

Conversely, if the manufacturer does not ground an aircraft and a similar event occurs... well you can see where that one will go, particularly if it is subsequently shown that they had a good idea what the issue was!

So what it will boil down to is a realistic assessment by legal teams, engineers and management on a case-by-case basis having considered all the facts and recommendations from investigatory bodies.

The manufacturer will certainly have far more information that the general public and operators, so it makes it very hard for us to guess what will happen.
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ALFA8C
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 12:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Flip.
I was just asking with reference to the Glasgow incident as i've not heard anything about the EC 135s being grounded for inspection.
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flip2
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Special bulletin has been issued by AAIB, outlining the initial information of the investigation.
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ALFA8C
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have read the bulletin over and over again yet still find it a mystery what on earth happened.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 09, 2013 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Indeed. It is thus far a tragic mystery, at least to us the general public.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In fact it seems to have opened a bigger can of worms than was there originally.

It states, in a round about way, what DIDN'T happen rather than what DID happen. It is worded very specifically and hasn't really quashed any of the theories as to the cause of the tragic accident.
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