NCAA Orders Airlines to Comply with FAA Directive over Southwest Flight 1380 Accident

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Chinedu Eze

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has issued an All Operators Letter (AOL) 070 requiring mandatory compliance with the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Emergency Airworthiness Directive by all operators in Nigeria forthwith.

The directive concerns the accident involving Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 in which one of the twin-engine Boeing 737-700 exploded and damaged the fuselage of the aircraft.

The accident caused the death of one out of 144 passengers and five crew in the US last week.
The AOL from NCAA, which was endorsed by Kayode Ajiboye on behalf of Director General NCAA, Capt Muhtar Usman, dated April 23, 2018 addressed to all airlines and aircraft owners is for immediate compliance.

NCAA said the issuance was an aftermath of a recent incident involving a South West Airlines (American Carrier) in which one of its engine exploded mid-air and the attendant Airworthiness Directives issued by FAA.

A statement signed by NCAA spokesman, Sam Adurogboye said upon the receipt of FAA Emergency Airworthiness Directive AD 2018-09-51, the Authority swung into action by carrying out a review on all the airlines to determine the operators of aircraft type with CFM56-7B engines that are essentially affected by the circular.

“It was established that only two operators have the aircraft type in question in their fleet but the good news is that they are yet to reach the 30,000 cycles to which the Emergency AD requires immediate ultrasonic inspection of the fan blades within 20 days.
“However the Authority went ahead to notify all the Nigerian operators about this development to enable them carry out the required inspection when it is eventually due.

“Nigeria air travellers are assured that the Authority will continue to enforce compliance with Safety Regulations at all times for a safer aviation and any violations will be treated in line with the provisions of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations (NCARs)”, the statement read.