Europe’s safety regulator has cancelled a directive tightening time limits to check Airbus A321 converted freighters for potential fatigue cracks in the centre wing-box area.
The 12 September directive had emerged after stress and load calculations for A321 freighters were performed by conversion specialist EFW.
These calculations had been prompted by an earlier directive affecting conventional A321s.
But the European Union Aviation Safety Agency says the formula used to determine the compliance time for checks on the freighters was “not correct”.
It adds that a further review, conducted by EFW and Airbus, has confirmed that increased loads for the converted freighter represent “only negligible” reduction in compliance time in comparison with the original A321 directive.
As a result, says EASA, the potential fatigue-crack condition – in the vicinity of the centre wing-box rear lower spar junction – is “sufficiently addressed” by its earlier instruction to operators, and it has cancelled the order to recalculate compliance times for freighters.