The AAIB recommendations followed its investigation into an incident involving a British Airways Boeing 737 which experienced serious roll/yaw oscillations during a post-maintenance check-flight.
It was discovered that a connector on the aircraft's yaw damper coupler had been contaminated by "-an unidentified fluid- affecting the phase and magnitude of the signals transmitted to the yaw damper actuator, stimulating a forced 'Dutch roll' mode of the aircraft". It is thought that a leaking lavatory may have been responsible for the damage which caused the BA incident in October 1995. Three accidents involving 737s which departed from controlled flight, including two in which extreme rudder movements are suspected as being a major factor, remain to be solved. (See story page 34).
BFGoodrich Aerospace has won a three-year contract to conduct heavy maintenance on Southwest Airlines' Boeing 737 aircraft. The financial terms of the deal are undisclosed, but Southwest says 53 of its aircraft will undergo full D-Check maintenance visits with BFG Aerospace through the year 2000
Boeing has no plans to build commercial aircraft in Russia, despite a press report to the contrary. Boeing spokeswoman Marta Newhart says that in the foreseeable future Boeing will continue to produce all its commercial aircraft at its two Seattle-area plants.
Biman Bangladesh Airlines has leased a Fokker F28-4000 from Indonesian carrier Trigana to replace an F28 that was lost in a December crash at Sylhet. The aircraft is desperately needed, as Biman has been struggling with a single British Aerospace ATP for use on domestic routes since the December crash. Its two other domestic aircraft, another ATP and an F28, are undergoing repairs.
The US FAA has issued an "emergency order" revoking the air carrier certificate of Flamenco Airways, of Culebra, Puerto Rico. The FAA says Flamenco Airways operated three aircraft on "hundreds of flights" beyond the compliance time for an airworthiness directive, and deliberately falsified maintenance and training records, loading manifests and other documentation. Flamenco is also accused of using commercially-rated pilots on scheduled commuter flights, under the pretense that the flights were on-demand charters.
Honeywell is to lodge a formal complaint with the European Commission objecting to the loan given by the French government to Sextant Avionique for its flight management system (FMS) programme.
Sextant is being loaned $24 million to assist with its activity in developing a FMS for Airbus types that would rival Honeywell's existing sole-supplier position.
Source: Flight Daily News