Hyderabad incident: the DGCA orders the inspection of the engines of the SpiceJet 14 Q400 aircraft

The DGCA aviation regulator on Monday ordered SpiceJet to carry out a borescope inspection of 28 Pratt and Whitney 150A engines on 14 Q400 turboprop aircraft within a week.

On October 12, a SpiceJet Q400 aircraft with 86 passengers on board made an emergency landing in Hyderabad after smoke was detected in the cabin while in flight.

In a statement released on Monday, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGAC) said that during the preliminary investigation, it found engine oil in the engine purge valve, which led to the oil entering the aircraft’s air conditioning system, causing smoke in the cabin.

Therefore, engine oil samples from 14 operational Q400 aircraft are to be taken and sent to engine manufacturer Pratt and Whitney Canada for oil analysis to “confirm the presence of metal and carbon particles”, he said. noted.

There is to be an inspection of the purge valve screens in 14 Q400 aircraft, he said.

The regulator said SpiceJet should not send any engines to Standard Aero, a Singapore-based maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) organization, which had carried out maintenance work on the engine of the Q400 plane involved in the crash. incident of October 12.

SpiceJet is to complete “one-time borescope inspection of all operational engines within one week and completion of borescope inspection of three engines, which have been received from Standard Aero, Singapore, by this evening (Monday). evening),” he said.

SpiceJet did not respond to Business Standard’s request for a statement on this.

The latest guidance comes at a time when SpiceJet is already under heightened DGCA scrutiny. Following a series of incidents involving the airline’s planes, the regulator on July 27 capped the maximum number of flights it can operate at 50%. Last month, curbs were extended until October 29.

SpiceJet suffered net losses of Rs 316 crore, Rs 934 crore, Rs 998 crore and Rs 1,725 ​​crore in fiscal 2019, 20, 21 and 22, respectively. The airline suffered a loss of Rs 789 crore in the first quarter of FY23.

The carrier’s chairman and chief executive, Ajay Singh, had said on August 31 this year that the airline would engage with investment bankers to raise up to $200 million.