ARC NEWS
EASA warns on AW169 tail rotor safety
November 09, 2018
European safety regulators have warned of a potentially unsafe condition with the tail rotor assemblies of Leonardo Helicopters AW169 and AW189 rotorcraft.
Although the move follows the fatal crash of an AW169 in Leicester, UK on 27 October, the emergency airworthiness directive stresses the root cause of that accident "has not been identified".

The Leicester crash occurred "while the helicopter was on a take-off phase at low forward speed" and "a loss of yaw control was observed".
Footage of the AW169's take-off shows its pilot performing a vertical departure before the helicopter develops an uncontrollable spin and crashes to the ground.
Issued by the European Aviation Safety Agency, the directive stipulates that operators of both types must, within five flight hours or 24h, inspect the tail rotor servo-actuator installation.

On 6 November, the manufacturer issued an emergency service bulletin advising operators of the AW169 to check the installation and functioning of the same component.
"Incorrect installation may lead to loss of tail rotor control which, depending on the flight condition, could lead to loss of control of the aircraft," the bulletin warns.

No safety issues have so far been detected with the larger AW189 super-medium-twin, but EASA notes that it is included in the directive as its tail rotor control system is "of a similar design" to that on AW169.
The UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch has yet to release any information related to the cause of the Leicester crash.

Leonardo Helicopters describes the service bulletins for both types as "precautionary", adding that "any hypothesis on the cause of the accident is premature at this time and the AAIB investigation continues".


Bombardier to sell Q400 programme
November 09, 2018
Bombardier has disclosed that it is selling its Dash 8 turboprop programme to a subsidiary of Longview Aviation Capital Corporation for $300 million.
Longview is a holding company which includes Viking Air, the manufacturer of the revived DHC-6 Twin Otter programme.
Bombardier says the sale includes the Q400 programme, as well as all assets and intellectual property for other Dash 8 models – comprising the -100, -200 and -300.
It also involves divesting the related aftermarket operations.
Bombardier says the transaction will close by the second half of next year. It expects net proceeds of $250 million.
Having already sold the CSeries twinjet programme to a partnership controlled by Airbus, Bombardier has been left with the CRJ regional jet as its primary commercial air transport product.
Bombardier says it will give its “full attention” to the CRJ programme.
It says it will also “explore strategic options” for the CRJ, while focusing on reducing costs and increasing volumes, as well as “optimising” the aftermarket for the fleet of 1,500 CRJs in service.


Angle-of-attack sensor replaced before 737 Max crash
November 08, 2018
Indonesia's National Transportation Safety Committee says an angle-of-attack sensor on the ill-fated Lion Air Boeing 737 Max 8 had been replaced a day before it crashed.
The committee says the sensor was replaced in Denpasar on 28 October, after pilots reported issues with the airspeed indicator.
Downloaded information from the recovered flight data recorder found that there was a "different [reading] on the angle-of-attack indicator" during a Denpasar-Jakarta flight on 28 October.
It adds that this was related to the faulty airspeed indication, which was first raised at a 5 November press conference by NTSC chief Soerjanto Tjahjono.
After the replacement, however, pilots that flew a Denpasar-Jakarta flight still found a 20° difference on the left-hand angle-of-attack sensor. During this flight, the pilots implemented "a number of procedures" to rectify the issues, and the jet subsequently landed in Jakarta safely.
The sensor that was removed in Denpasar has since been sent to NTSC offices in Jakarta, before being transferred to Boeing's headquarters in Chicago for further investigation. Investigators plan to reconstruct the flight and study the faults related to the sensor using Boeing's engineering simulator in Seattle.
Interviews have also been conducted with the pilots and cabin crews that operated PK-LQP prior to the crash, as well as technicians that maintained the jet in Denpasar, Jakarta, and Manado.
The NTSC adds that, based on issues faced by pilots on the Denpasar-Jakarta flight, it has recommended that Boeing notify 737 Max operators of the potential issues they could face with the sensors.
NTSC investigators and officials from Boeing and General Electric have identified some of the wreckage recovered from the seabed. These include the left CFM International Leap-1B engine, the right-hand main landing-gear, a tail section, aircraft sections 43, 44, 46 and 48, a cockpit oxygen bottle, a left-hand passenger door, and a wing-tip.

Boeing issued a operations manual bulletin on 6 November, directing operators to “existing flight crew procedures" to address circumstances involving erroneous angle-of-attack sensor information.
Indonesia's national search and rescue agency Basarnas has extended its mission to 10 November.

The Lion Air Max 8 was operating as flight JT610 from Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta International airport to Pangkal Pinang when it crashed into the sea near the town of Karawang, claiming the lives of all 189 passengers and crew on board.


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