Russia’s Kogalymavia is defending itself over the condition of the MetroJet Airbus A321 which crashed in Sinai, having released a number of documents detailing the aircraft’s recent technical record.
Kogalymavia, which operates Airbus jets under the MetroJet brand, has published the technical log for the ill-fated 31 October flight from Sharm el-Sheikh to St Petersburg.
The log shows routine pre-flight information about the A321. It had arrived in Sharm el-Sheikh from Samara with 7,000kg of fuel and, at the Egyptian airport, uplifted nearly 14,000kg.
Its captain had signed the log confirming a pre-flight check and his acceptance of the aircraft.
Kogalymavia has similarly released several logs from the same aircraft during four preceding flights on 29 and 30 October, none of which features any unusual notes.
The aircraft underwent a daily routine maintenance check at Sharm el-Sheikh overnight on 29-30 October and was released to service.
Kogalymavia’s documents show the next daily check was due on 1 November. The aircraft had undergone a weekly check on 26 October.
The company has also detailed the A321’s last major maintenance visit, a C-check which was carried out at Turkish Airlines’ HABOM facility in Istanbul.
This C-check was completed on 18 March last year, according to the certificate of release to service. The next such check was due in March 2016.
Kogalymavia has published the airworthiness certificate of the jet, valid until 30 March 2016, granted by the Irish Aviation Authority – the regulating authority for the aircraft.
It has also released the European Aviation Safety Agency’s Part-145 approval of its line maintenance operation, covering Airbus A319s, A320s and A321s.
EASA subsequently confirmed “continued validity” of the Part-145 approval in a communication to Moscow-based Kogalymavia in October.
Maintenance of the aircraft is an open line of inquiry for investigators, particularly because the airframe sustained substantial damage during a tail-strike at Cairo in November 2001, when the aircraft was in service with Middle East Airlines.
Flightglobal’s weekly publication Flight International originally detailed the accident, which resulted in the jet having to undergo extensive repairs, and its Fleets Analyzer database records it as having returned to service in February 2002.
Investigators are likely to seek additional details on the maintenance history of the MetroJet A321, given that a small number of in-flight structural failure accidents – including the fatal loss of two Boeing 747s – have been traced to inadequate repairs following tail-strike damage.
Source: Cirium Dashboard