Fokker bulkhead cracks spur EASA check plans

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Operators of Fokker 70 and 100 twinjets could be ordered to inspect the rear pressure bulkhead of the types after concerns over cracking.

The European Aviation Safety Agency has opened a consultation on the matter, after three reports of cracks in the bulkhead web.

It says this could result in an "exponential crack growth rate" and possible failure of the web, causing decompression.

While Fokker Services has laid out a repetitive inspection requirement, EASA says many aircraft have "already exceeded" the threshold of 30,000 cycles for this task.

EASA is proposing an airworthiness directive requiring one-time inspection of the rear pressure bulkhead web, before 30,000 cycles or within 12 months. The proposal will be closed to consultation on 15 October.