The US Federal Aviation Administration is to issue an airworthiness directive in the next few weeks giving airlines operating 700 Boeing MD-11s and McDonnell Douglas DC-10s, MD-80s and MD-90s four years to replace thermal insulation.

The pending action reverses the FAA's decision six months ago to produce a tougher burn test specification for aircraft insulation blankets that would have required the replacement of materials in as many as 12,000 airliners worldwide at a cost of several billion dollars. The FAA will also issue a notice of proposed rulemaking concerning insulation on other transports.

Source: Flight International