This week, United Airlines took 25 of its Boeing 777-200 aircraft out of service after realizing it had failed to conduct the necessary inspections on the wing leading-edge panels.
According to the Federal Aviation Administration, the airline informed them of the problem following an internal audit and provided a plan to finish the inspections.
In order to conduct the inspections, United said on Tuesday that it had to cancel about 18 flights on Monday night and Tuesday morning. However, it did not anticipate having to postpone any further flights due to the problem.
United said on Tuesday: “We’ve completed inspections on 10 of those aircraft, and are working with the FAA to return others to service while inspections are ongoing over the next two weeks,”
The FAA said it was reviewing United’s inspection plan “as well as looking into the circumstances that led to the missed inspections.”
52 Boeing 777 aircraft operated by United and fitted with Pratt & Whitney (PW) 4000 engines were given the all-clear to fly again in May by the FAA.
The aircraft was suspended in February 2021 after an emergency landing in Denver by a United flight bound for Honolulu that had experienced engine trouble and scattered debris over nearby cities. The jet safely landed at the airport with no injuries.
United claimed on Tuesday that some of those 777-200s are undergoing wing leading-edge panel inspections unrelated to engines or recent engine work. They claimed that most inspections could be finished in a single day.
The inspection issue was reported earlier by the Wall Street Journal.