Sunday, August 26, 2007

China Airlines Cookout UPDATE II

Pic courtesy of Flight International. Exploded drawing from the Friendly Aviation Administration.

They're reporting that yes, Virginia, this can and does happen when slat bolts come adrift because they've not been properly safetied or pinned.

These little pictures explains it all better than I could.

There is an emergency AD out on this item that you can see here.


At 12:37 AM, Blogger G. F. McDowell said...

for the clueless, is this an MX item or something only the manufacturer does?

At 5:46 AM, Blogger Robert Luedeman, attorney at law said...

I'm quite sure that checking the security of the slat bolts is a maintenance inspection item, but as to whether it should be accomplished on a periodic basis or only when the slat or the sliding parts have been removed or repaired is something i do not know, but I shall check.

At 10:14 PM, Blogger candee said...

A coupla points:

(1) Robert, this is the first time I have noticed in the photo (which I have seen elsewhere but maybe there's something about the Dougloid Papers that makes me focus better) that the washer and the nut are STILL ON THE THING! So this particular SNAFU isn't the result of someone failing to torque the thing or failing to install the washer (both of which are also now to be checked), but rather some maint dumbass pulling the bolt during the slat work that they -- according to reports -- accomplished a few weeks earlier, attaching the washer and nut loosely so they're all together and don't get lost, and then misplacing the thing. Very interesting.

(2) Yeah, it's a maint inspection item. Just like at my car dealer, I guess some airlines don't always do every item on that 20,000-mile inspection card.

(3) Obviously, other failures by humans can cause this condition (without the nut and washer being on the thing, of course): failure to properly torque the bolts after reattaching them, failing to reattach the nut and washer, failing to attach the washer, etc.

(4) One report indicates a bolt banging around in there when there was never yet a maint reason to remove any bolts b/c the a/c was pretty new. Ooops. Guess this is potentially a factory failure as well on some a/c.



At 7:36 AM, Blogger Robert Luedeman, attorney at law said...

I got a picture from the emergency AD that gives a better picture of the assembly. It's one of those things that I would probably have made a 100 per cent inspection item when I was a line inspector at Douglas. There are always those little things you look for, and my bete noir was a bunch of huckbolts in the MD11 structure that were always too small on every one I inspected.
I can't say for sure that this particular picture is of the aircraft in question, but if it was me I'd want to see the end of that slat where the bolt went through. Clearly, though the downstops are not installed on that bolt.


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