IndiGo grounds three A320neos after red flag from European agency

Pratt & Whitney engine issue could ground some planes

Lukas Schulze AFP Getty An issue with some engines built by Pratt &Whitney could ground some Airbus planes and limit how long others can fly

Three aircrafts belonging to the fleet low-priced carrier (LCC) IndiGo have been grounded due to engine related issues, the civil aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said on Saturday.

Air safety officials in Europe clamped down on flights by planes powered by affected Pratt & Whitney engines, citing "several occurrences of engine in-flight shutdown", according to the Wall Street Journal. The matter came to light on Friday when the EASA issued an emergency airworthiness directive (AD) for A320neo planes fitted with PW1100G-JM engines having a particular serial number. Airbus has issued an Alert Operators Transmission (AOT) providing instructions "to de-pair the affected engines and discontinue [ETOPS] for aircraft fitted with affected engines", according to EASA. This issue is isolated to a limited subpopulation of engines.

In a statement issued on Saturday, IndiGo confirmed that there are some issues with the engine of the said aircraft and keeping the safety as top priority, it has decided not to fly these three aircrafts.

Pratt & Whitney, with the support of Airbus, is in close contact with the airline to address the results of a recent finding related to the issue, it added. But we feel it was the best decision in the interest of our safe and reliable operations.

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The restrictions cover jets with two engines from the same affected batch - effectively grounding those jets. GoAir said it has three of these engines installed in its aircraft.

Earlier overheating problems on the Pratt engines have interfered with A320neo deliveries since early previous year. On certain days, the airline had seen as many as nine of its aircraft grounded due to unavailability of spare engines leading to flight disruptions.

There are 113 A320neo family aircraft powered by the Pratt engines in service (the CFM Leap-1A engine is also an option on A320neo-family aircraft).

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