Korean Air Inspecting A330s Following Two Incidents

Korean Air Inspecting A330s Following Two Incidents

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Korean Air will be carrying out inspections of its entire Airbus A330 fleet, following two recent incidents.

Why Korean Air is inspecting Airbus A330s

Korean Air has today announced that it will be launching a safety audit of its Airbus A330 fleet. The airline will temporarily be taking its fleet of 24 A330s out of service in phases, for thorough inspections. Furthermore, the airline will retire six of its older A330s, though the timeline for that remains to be seen.

This decision follows two recent incidents:

  • On October 23, a Korean Air A330 overran the runway at Cebu Airport, as there were bad weather conditions; the plane was badly damaged, but all passengers and crew survived
  • On October 30, a Korean Air A330 flying to Sydney had to return to Incheon Airport shortly after takeoff due to an engine problem
A Korean Air A330 had a landing accident in Cebu

Korean Air President Woo Kee-hong has said that “Korean Air is aware of the gravity of the recent events involving our A330 aircraft,” and “to address concerns and secure a safe operation system, we will carry out a full-scale, comprehensive safety inspection of our A330 fleet and seek an independent, external safety consultation.”

A Korean Air A330 had to return due to engine issues

I doubt much will come of this?

Safety is of course paramount in the airline industry, and airlines should always err on the side of caution. That philosophy is why aviation is so safe.

While carrying out inspections out of an abundance of caution is ultimately good, the A330 has been flying for years (Korean Air’s fleet is an average of 17+ years old), and has proven to be an incredibly reliable aircraft.

In this case it seems we have two unrelated incidents — one was a landing incident with bad weather conditions, and one was an engine issue after takeoff. While both incidents should be investigated, there’s no indication that the two are linked.

If it were believed that there were a serious issue, all A330s would be grounded immediately, rather than inspections being carried out progressively. This seems more about saving face and public perception than anything else.

Korean Air is inspecting its A330 fleet

Bottom line

Following two recent Korean Air Airbus A330 incidents, the airline will be carrying out inspections on its entire fleet of these jets. The two incidents seem unrelated, as one involved bad weather during landing, and one involved an engine issue after takeoff.

It sounds like these inspections are being carried out gradually, so it seems like operations shouldn’t be impacted too much.

What do you make of Korean Air inspecting its A330s?

(Tip of the hat to Klaus)

Conversations (10)
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  1. FlyerDon Guest

    Blame the planes instead of the pilots? I'm not sure that is a winning strategy.

    1. Dave Guest

      Prolly cuz KAL saw people blaming the plane for MU7535, AF11, DHL 757 incident, MAS 737 incident, Miami Air 293, Delta 777 fuel dump, AC837, PR113, UIA752, Flypgs incidents, etc. on Twitter and Youtube comments. Data analytics at its finest.

  2. Irfan Kidwai Guest

    Inspection of A330 fleet is ok, however the airline must revisit flight crew training as it is a more urgent issue that needs to be checked and corrected as necessary. They had another accident in SFO in which a B777 landed short of the runway, it resulted in a hull loss as well.

    1. Unhoeflich Diamond

      That was Asiana, not Korean Air

  3. Bernardo Ng Guest

    I was on this very same flight number from ICN-CUB back in July and now I’m shocked that that could have been our planet
    crashing. Thank god it wasn’t. It was also an A330-300

  4. Oh Guest

    Silly method of corrective action response. Another Korean publicity reaction by the airline that does not address the safety issues and problems.
    1) for engine problems - maintenance follow up and inspections are necessary should be carried out to suggest corrective actions
    2) for that obvious poor pilot judgement and error in the Cebu landing, crew training and periodic check assessments should be reviewed with follow up actions on training and check rectifications

    Silly method of corrective action response. Another Korean publicity reaction by the airline that does not address the safety issues and problems.
    1) for engine problems - maintenance follow up and inspections are necessary should be carried out to suggest corrective actions
    2) for that obvious poor pilot judgement and error in the Cebu landing, crew training and periodic check assessments should be reviewed with follow up actions on training and check rectifications
    Korean Air has always have a hosts of pilot issues from training to recruitment. Historically, it does not have a good record and its safety management are at best a hit and miss although it had some good years without serious mishaps.

  5. Victor Yee Guest

    Check your pilots not the aircraft

  6. Tim Dunn Diamond

    As Ben notes, just face saving. If a real threat existed you would ground the fleet immediately

  7. Davis Guest

    This is all about public perception. Korean Air is terrified that the public will think of them as unsafe, as they did back in the 80s and 90s.

    1. ConcordeBoy Diamond

      ...and with good reason back then, and perhaps even now.

      The issue was cultural: too many incidents were happening, because FOs and younger pilots wouldn't speak up whenever Captains and/or seniors made an error. Or in the rare occasion that they did, they'd be told to shut up-- and they would. Then die.

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

Oh Guest

Silly method of corrective action response. Another Korean publicity reaction by the airline that does not address the safety issues and problems. 1) for engine problems - maintenance follow up and inspections are necessary should be carried out to suggest corrective actions 2) for that obvious poor pilot judgement and error in the Cebu landing, crew training and periodic check assessments should be reviewed with follow up actions on training and check rectifications Korean Air has always have a hosts of pilot issues from training to recruitment. Historically, it does not have a good record and its safety management are at best a hit and miss although it had some good years without serious mishaps.

4
Victor Yee Guest

Check your pilots not the aircraft

4
Tim Dunn Diamond

As Ben notes, just face saving. If a real threat existed you would ground the fleet immediately

3
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