The American Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released a statement on Sunday claiming that some Boeing 737 Max and NG aircraft may have some parts that were not manufactured properly. The announcement comes months after the worldwide grounding of the 737 Max due to two fatal incidents involving the newest Boeing product.
The statement claims that up 148 leading edge slat tracks manufactured by a sub-contractor are suspected to be faulty. The tracks are currently installed on 133 of the NG models and 179 of the Max aircraft. The report goes on to claim that the failure of the part would not cause the loss of a plane but could definitely cause damage to the aircraft in flight.
Boeing has identified the groups of serial numbers on which the parts were installed, a total of 65 aircraft in the US are affected. The parts may “be susceptible to premature failure or cracks resulting from the improper manufacturing process” the report said.
And airworthiness directive will be issued by the FAA which will require Boeing to identify and remove the parts from service. Operators of the aircraft will have 10 days to perform any maintenance needed on the affected aircraft.
The FAA spokesperson claimed that the new issue will not affect Boeing’s submission of a software updated required before the Max aircraft are returned to service.
The FAA said there is currently no timetable for the software update for the 737 max that will end the grounding of the plane but Boeing has said while the software update is complete they are still working on addressing information requests from the FAA before they can schedule a certification flight and submit the final documentation to the FAA.
Acting FAA Administrator Dan Elwell told media outlets on May 23rd in Texas after a meeting with 30 or more international regulators that the agency had yet to decide on training requirements once the update is released.
Title image courtesy of Adrian Edwards.