Thursday, 24 May, 2018

Southwest sought more time to inspect engines

Southwest plane hits bird, forced to return to Nashville Passengers grabbed woman nearly sucked from plane's window
Heather Davidson | 20 April, 2018, 01:13

A man who was onboard a stricken Southwest Airlines flight in the United States, on which one woman died, has been trolled on social media for livestreaming what he thought may have been the last minutes of his life. There was momentary chaos. Passengers saved a woman from being sucked out of the aircraft.

The Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 was traveling from New York City to Dallas on Tuesday when a blade broke free from one of its CFM56-7B engines - manufactured by General Electric and France's Safran Aircraft Engines.

As one of the Navy's first female fighter pilots, she served in VAQ-34, a tactical electronic warfare squadron out of Point Mugu, California, that helped train ship crews to respond to Soviet missile threats, according to Navy records.

Gregory said while incidents like Tuesday's are rare, they are an important reminder that travelers need to pay attention to the preflight safety briefings. And you've probably ignored it 999 of those times - after all, you expect your plane to land safely.

"There was a family that lost a loved one", Needum said.

"We could feel the air from the outside coming in, and then we had smoke kind of coming in the window". It broke off during that Southwest flight from NY to Dallas sending shrapnel forward and causing an explosion.

When it was all over, the pilot came out of the cabin and hugged everyone, telling them, "You all did a great job. Meanwhile, you have passengers that were in that aisle, trying to attend to the woman that was bleeding from the window explosion", he said. The Federal Aviation Administration has not yet required airlines to conduct the inspections but said late Wednesday that it would do so in the next two weeks.

The flight tracking website FlightRadar24 estimated the Boeing 737-700 descended from 31,684 feet to about 10,000 feet in a little over five minutes. The last routine maintenance on the engine occurred on April 15, two days before it exploded. "We can see paint transfer", Sumwalt said.

He said he paid $8 to connect to WiFi as the plane was going down in order to say his goodbyes.

"My brother says she's the best pilot he knows, " Gary Shults said.

"If you can possibly imagine going through the window of an airplane at about 600 miles per hour and hitting either the fuselage or the wing with your body, with your face, then I think I can probably tell you there was significant trauma", Phillips told ABC.

Kathy Farnan, 77-year-old from Santa Fe, New Mexico, said people seated near her in the front, away from the damage, remained relatively calm. "We're just grateful to have closure".

Seven other passengers were slightly injured.

Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel said earlier that one of the 149 passengers and crew members on board was taken to the hospital in critical condition. They recovered the airplane's cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder.

The left engine inlet separated from the engine during the flight.

Sumwalt said part of the inquiry will look at the CFM International 56 turbofan engine.

As a result of the 2016 incident, engine manufacturer CFM International, a GE Aviation/Safran Aircraft Engines joint venture, had issued guidance as recently as June 2017 providing instructions for ultrasonic inspection of certain high-time fan blades in the engine type, which powers 737NGs.

"Everybody acted and everybody stood strong", he said.

The pilots said they had been interviewed by investigators Wednesday and would not be doing any media interviews.

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