P&W engine causes IndiGo trouble again

India

05 Jan 2019

Close shave: IndiGo plane suffers mid-air engine failure; returns safely

In yet another mishap in the Indian aviation industry, an IndiGo Airbus A320neo suffered a mid-air engine failure while flying to Kolkata from Chennai on January 3.

Thankfully, despite considerable damage to its engine, the plane managed to return to Chennai, thereby avoiding a major air tragedy.

Currently, the plane remains grounded, and investigations are underway.

Here are the details.

Engine failure

What we know about the engine failure

What we know about the engine failure

The incident involved a Pratt & Whitney engine, which, sources said, stalled in mid-air with a "loud bang". Sparks started flying and smoke could be seen.

The incident with the engine led to the aircraft vibrating heavily, and the flight had to return to Chennai under emergency conditions.

The number of passengers on the flight, 6E 923, could not be ascertained immediately.

IndiGo's statement on the incident

"The crew followed the normal operating procedures and asked for a priority landing. There was no engine shutdown and no emergency landing was declared as per the report," said IndiGo in a statement.

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Response

How the government has responded to the incident

After the engine failure came to light, Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey said that the civil aviation ministry had taken "serious note" of the incident.

Meanwhile, a team from the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB), the government's apex aircraft investigation body, was rushed to Chennai to take stock of the situation and initiate further investigations into the engine failure.

Worrisome

IndiGo had faced similar issues with Airbus A320neos earlier

IndiGo had faced similar issues with Airbus A320neos earlier

The most worrying part, perhaps, is the fact that this is not the first incident of its kind.

Since inducting Airbus A320neos to its fleet in 2016, IndiGo has faced multiple incidents where there were issues with the US-made Pratt & Whitney engines that power the planes.

For each grounding pertaining to such issues, IndiGo had also received compensation from Airbus and Pratt & Whitney.

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