Quantcast
Latest Stories

AA says it knows why seats came loose on planes

By

In this photo provided by WBZ-TV and WFXT-TV seats from an American Airlines 757 are carried before receiving “Main Cabin Extra Refurbishment” Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012, at Logan International Airport in Boston. American Airlines says passenger seats on a third flight came loose as the plane was airborne Tuesday, and it’s continuing to inspect other jets with similar seating. The airline acknowledged Tuesday that seats came loose on a flight last week from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to Vail, Colo., and the same thing happened aboard the same plane Monday and a second plane Saturday, according to the airline. AP Photo/WBZ-TV/WFXT-TV MANDATORY CREDIT

FORT WORTH, Texas— American Airlines is cancelling dozens of flights as it scrambles to fix seats that could pop loose during flight.

Airline officials said late Thursday that they had come up with a fix for the seats, and they began pulling 48 Boeing 757s out of service to make repairs. All the planes should be back in service by Saturday.

The seat repairs, however, could inconvenience thousands of passengers. American said the work caused it to cancel 50 flights on Thursday and 44 on Friday. Each 757 that American operates in the U.S. has 188 seats.

It’s the latest black eye for American parent AMR Corp., which is operating under bankruptcy protection and trying to fend off a takeover by US Airways Group Inc. Flight cancelations and delays surged in September, which American blamed on a slowdown by pilots who are unhappy that American canceled their labor contract.

Since last week, seats have come loose on three American Airlines flights involving 757s that had been recently refurbished. The seats had been removed and reinstalled as part of the work.

Federal officials said they are continuing a safety investigation into the events at the nation’s third-biggest airline.

American originally said the problem was due to a clamp that holds rows of seats to tracks on the aircraft floor.

But officials offered a new explanation Thursday, saying that a combination of wear, poor design and even soda spilled into the tracks caused pins to pop out of the grooves.

The airline has used the same seats for 20 years without incident until now, said David L. Campbell, American’s vice president of safety.

“The fundamental design of this seat is not as robust as some of the latest designs,” Campbell said in an interview.

A spokesman for the seat manufacturer, Weber Aircraft LLC, declined to comment beyond saying that his company is still investigating.

A spokesman for American said later that Campbell agreed that removing and reinstalling the seats might have hastened their failure to stay in place.

Campbell said the new fix will consist of installing an additional locking mechanism that was designed by American’s engineers and approved by the Federal Aviation Administration.

The FAA issued a statement saying that it approved of American’s decision to conduct more inspections. The agency said its safety investigation was continuing and it would “take additional action as appropriate.” The agency is likely to examine whether American adequately inspected the seats after the cabin-refurbishment jobs.

Todd Curtis, a former safety engineer with Boeing and director of the Airsafe.com Foundation, said American made the right decision to inspect more planes once it discovered the extent of the problem.

No other airlines have reported loose seats. United Airlines doesn’t use the same seat, and US Airways uses different hardware to mount seats, said officials for those carriers.


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Air Transport , airport , American Airlines


  • divictes

    Tales from the Crypt… they ask you to fasten your seatbelts and at 30,000 feet your seat takes a stroll inside the fuselage.He he he…



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
Advertisement

News

  • If Napoles names Aquino allies, they’ll be brought to bar of justice – Palace
  • Lacson says diamond-studded earring snatched from wife fake
  • Pope John XXIII launched Vatican II and then some
  • Militants: Napoles as state witness is ‘clear travesty of justice’
  • US ‘closely watching’ for signs of N.Korea nuclear test
  • Sports

  • Wizards beat Bulls in OT to take 2-0 series lead
  • Pacers rally past Hawks 101-85 to even series
  • David Moyes out as Manchester United manager
  • Nadal to face fellow Spaniard at Barcelona Open
  • Defensive Chelsea holds Atletico in scoreless draw
  • Lifestyle

  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Sweet party for Andi Manzano
  • Safety in online buying and selling
  • Entertainment

  • Ex-Fox exec denies allegations in sex abuse suit
  • Kris Aquino backtracks, says Herbert Bautista and her are ‘best friends’
  • Summer preview: Chris Pratt enters a new ‘Galaxy’
  • Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in US
  • Summer movie preview: Bay reboots ‘Transformers’
  • Business

  • McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline
  • SEC approves SM’s P15B retail bond offer
  • $103M Vista Land bonds tendered for redemption
  • Oil slips to $102 as US crude supplies seen rising
  • SC stops Meralco power rate hike anew
  • Technology

  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Brazil passes trailblazing Internet privacy law
  • New York police Twitter campaign backfires badly
  • Opinion

  • One-dimensional diplomacy: A cost-benefit analysis of Manila’s security deal with Washington
  • No ordinary illness
  • Reforest mountains with fire trees and their kind
  • Day of the Earth
  • When will Chinese firm deliver new coaches?
  • Global Nation

  • Filipina, 51, shot dead by 24-year-old American boyfriend
  • China, rivals sign pact to ease maritime tensions
  • Visa-free US trip? Do not believe it, says consulate
  • Obama visit to Asia seen as counterweight to China
  • Violence mars militant protest at US Embassy
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement