Transport Canada may consider banning Boeing 777s from airspace following engine fire

From CTV News – link to source story and video

Cameron French, CTVNews.ca writer | Monday, February 22, 2021

United Airlines Flight 328 approaches Denver International Airport after experiencing a ‘right engine failure’ shortly after taking off from Denver on Feb. 20, 2021.

TORONTO — Transport Canada may consider temporarily banning certain Boeing 777s from Canadian airspace depending on what investigators uncover about an engine fire that forced a 777 to land shortly after takeoff from Denver over the weekend.

The incident prompted Boeing to recommend grounding 777s with Pratt & Whitney PW4000-112 engines. Several airlines have grounded their fleets of 777s with those engines, and the United Kingdom said it will temporarily ban the aircraft from its airspace.

“Transport Canada aviation safety experts are monitoring the situation and the U.S. NTSB investigation closely. Should any safety issues be identified, the department will not hesitate to take immediate action and ground the Boeing 777 aircraft from Canadian airspace, if necessary,” the agency said in an emailed statement.

Transport Canada said it has been in contact with the U.S Federal Aviation Administration, which on Sunday issued an emergency order calling for inspections of the aircraft, and is expected to issue an airworthiness directive on the engine issue.

Air Canada has 25 Boeing 777s in its fleet, according to its website, but the airline said those planes use General Electric engines.

“Air Canada’s Boeing 777 fleet do not have the same engines so are not affected,” the airline said in a statement. 

None of WestJet, Sunwing, or Air Transat have Boeing 777s in their fleets, according to their websites.

According to registry data, the only airlines that operate with the affected engines are based in the United States, Japan and South Korea. Transport Canada confirmed that no Canadian airlines operate Boeing 777 aircraft with the Pratt & Whitney PW4000-112 engine.

The emergency landing in Denver, along with dramatic video posted on social media of the engine spewing flames in flight, comes in the wake of the year-long grounding of Boeing’s 737 Max series after two deadly crashes in 2018 and 2019. All passengers survived the Denver landing.