JetBlue Flight 1416
JetBlue Flight 1416 was a scheduled flight from Long Beach Airport to Austin–Bergstrom International Airport in Austin, Texas. On 18 September 2014, while on initial climb and just below 9,000 feet above sea level, the No.2 engine malfunctioned and resulted in a undercowl fire. The Airbus A320-200 circled back to Long Beach Airport and made an emergency landing on runway 30. The passengers and crew was evacuated onto the runway on the evacuation slide. Four were injured in the incident.
The aircraft involved was an Airbus A320-232 delivered to JetBlue in April 2007 and was 7 years and 5 months old at the time of the incident. It had a Manufacturer Serial Number of 3091 and was powered by 2 IAE V2525-A5 turbofan engines. The aircraft was named "California Blue" and had the registration N656JB.
The aircraft departed Long Beach Airport at 09:17a.m. Pacific Standard Time, at around 9,000 feet above sea level, the flight crew received several Electronic centralised aircraft monitor (ECAM) warnings including an overheat indication for the No.2 engine and received information about smoke in the cabin. Passengers also reported hearing a "loud boom". The pilots immediately shut down the engine, discharged the engine fire bottle extinguishing systems and made an air turnback to Long Beach. The oxygen masks did not deploy immediately, meaning that the cabin crew had to manually deploy them. According to the passengers, the flight attendants were yelling orders to brace once the plane began its decent for landing.
The aircraft made a successful and uneventful single-engine landing back at Long Beach Airport runway 30 at 09:25a.m. and was met by aircraft rescue and firefighting personnel, who observed no damage on the aircraft and told reporters that they saw no sign of flames, although they did not look inside the engine.
After the aircraft came to a stop on the runway, the crew announced to air traffic control (ATC) that they would be evacuating and asked if there was any smoke from the No.2 engine, ATC replied with "negative" (no smoke). This then prompted the captain to cancel the evacuation. However, the evacuation slide was deployed nonetheless and all passengers and crew evacuated the aircraft safely, 4 passengers were injured and was treated by Long Beach Fire Department paramedics at the scene of the incident, including one who sustained an injury from the evacuation slide and one passenger complained of shortness of breath and was taken to a local hospital for evaluation.
Actor Jackson Rathbone, known for his role as Jasper Hale in The Twilight Saga Series, was on the flight when the incident occurred and posted on Twitter: "I recited the Lord's Prayer as I held my son and my wife in my arms."
Runway 30 of Long Beach airport was shut down for around 2 hours due to the evacuation, meaning that some departing flights were delayed and 2 flights from the San Francisco Bay Area that were scheduled to arrive before 11a.m. was diverted.
Aftermath and investigation
An on-site examination of the aircraft conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) revealed that the No.2 engine thrust reverser had considerable heat distress and some de-lamination, the examination also revealed considerable damage to the low pressure turbine (LPT) and a fractured fuel pressure line.
The engine was removed from the aircraft and was sent to MTU in Germany, who is a manufacturer of commercial internal combustion engines, for detailed examination.
The NTSB concluded that the probable cause of the incident was due to the fatigue fracture of a retaining lug from a high pressure turbine which, consequently, released 2 turbine blades which impacted the low pressure turbine case and cause a fuel line to fracture. This then resulted in fuel being sprayed onto the hot engine cases where it caught fire. During machining operations on the disk lug, a tool mark was made which allowed the fatigue cracks to initiate in the area.
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- List of accidents and incidents involving commercial aircraft
- List of accidents and incidents involving airliners in the United States
- JetBlue Flight 292
- JetBlue Flight 191
- US Airways Flight 1549
- "JetBlue Flight 1416 summary-NTSB". National Transport Safety Board. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
- "JetBlue 1416 summary". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
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- "N656JB registration information". Planespotters.net. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
- "Jetblue A320 engine fire due to the fatigue fracture of a high-pressure turbine stage 2 disk blade". 7 November 2016. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
- "JetBlue plane forced to make emergency landing". The Detroit News. 19 September 2014. Retrieved 11 December 2018.
- Hradecky, Simon (18 September 2014). "Incident: Jetblue A320 at Long Beach on Sep 18th 2014, engine fire". The Aviation Herald. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
- "4 Injured After Jet Blue Flight Makes Emergency Landing At Long Beach Airport". CBS Los Angeles. 18 September 2014. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
- "A JetBlue Flight Made An Emergency Landing As A 'Twilight' Star Live Tweeted About It". Business Insider. 19 September 2014. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
- "JetBlue flight makes emergency landing at Long Beach". Orange County Register. 18 September 2014. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
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