FAA to order 787 hose swap after EgyptAir 777 fire

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US regulators are intending to order Boeing 787-8 operators to replace cockpit oxygen hoses to limit the risk of a fire similar to that which destroyed an EgyptAir 777-200.

Under the proposed directive the low-pressure crew oxygen hoses will be replaced by hoses with non-conductive internal springs.

The EgyptAir fire occurred as the 777 was parked at a Cairo gate preparing for departure in July 2011.

It originated on the first officer’s side and rapidly spread, defeating an initial attempt to extinguish the blaze.

Egyptian accident investigators were unable to trace the source of the fire. But the electrical conductivity of the hose was considered a potential risk by US authorities, particularly given the oxygen-rich environment, and the FAA ordered non-conductive replacements to be fitted on the 777.

The new directive states that some hoses on the 787-8 are “similar in design” to those on the 777 involved in the fire, and that an “inadvertent” electrical current passing through the anti-collapse spring could cause the hose to melt or burn.

Over 130 787s have been delivered although United Airlines is the only carrier on the US registry currently operating the type.