Neo aircraft ready to fly, all affected engines replaced: DGCA
The country’s aviation regulator was replying to queries raised by a petitioner about the safety of aircraft fitted with Pratt & Whitney engines.mumbai Updated: Apr 17, 2018 00:36 IST
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) told the Bombay high court on Monday that IndiGo and GoAir have replaced the faulty Pratt & Whitney engines in 14 grounded Airbus A320neo with engines of a different series, making them safe for operations.
The country’s aviation regulator was replying to queries raised by a petitioner about the safety of aircraft fitted with Pratt & Whitney engines. DGCA said it has checked the pre-450 series engines that have replaced the post-450 series made by Pratt & Whitney aircraft. Additional solicitor general Anil Singh representing DGCA they are satisfied with the engines and that all aircraft with the engines are fit to fly. However, the HC scheduled the hearing to June 11 after the petitioner raised questions about the affidavits and proofs of airworthiness submitted by DGCA.
A bench of Justices Naresh Patil and GS Kulkarni asked DGCA to make sure that it was taking the steps needed to ensure that the modified engines in the affected aircraft that are now operational are thoroughly checked for safety. After DCGA’s reply, however, the bench told the regulator to check the engines themselves instead of blindly following international guidelines.
IndiGo’s counsel, senior advocate Janak Dwarkadas said all aircraft were back in operation except those with engines having series number between 450 and 614.
The lawyer representing the petitioner said the government had written a letter to DGCA in February 17 last year stating that the issues related to A320neo were probably owing to local weather conditions. He stated, “DGCA has not followed the Indian aircraft rule. The aircraft were allowed to fly when the particular series engines were failing.” The issue was highlighted in February this year when European Aviation Safety Authority (EASA) had issued emergency airworthiness directive for A320neo planes fitted with PW1100 engines beyond 450 series.
First Published: Apr 17, 2018 00:36 IST