Planes grounded after 2nd crash

From Times Wire Services

Canadian plane maker Bombardier Inc. strongly recommended that airlines ground and inspect about 60 Q400 turboprop passenger planes after the landing gear on an SAS Q400 failed Wednesday, sending it skidding off a runway in Vilnius, Lithuania.

It was the second such incident in three days involving a Q400 operated by the Scandinavian airline.

The request to ground and inspect Q400s that have made more than 10,000 flights led to cancellations of at least 200 flights by airlines around the world. Stockholm-based SAS and Horizon Air, a regional carrier operated by Seattle-based Alaska Air Group Inc., each canceled more than 100 flights .

Bombardier said the groundings would affect about 60 of the 160 Q400s that had been delivered worldwide. The Q400’s landing gear is made by Goodrich Corp. of Charlotte, N.C.


SAS grounded its fleet of 27 Q400s, Horizon grounded 19 and Austrian Airlines Group grounded eight. Montreal-based Bombardier declined to name the operators of the remaining aircraft that it urged be grounded.

Thirteen of the canceled Horizon Air flights involved aircraft operating out of Los Angeles International Airport, said Angela Doyle, a customer care specialist and trainer for the airline. LAX was the only Southern California airport at which flights were canceled, Doyle said.

“It is likely this could impact flights [Thursday],” she said, adding that passengers affected were being contacted by the airline.

None of the 52 passengers and crew members were injured in the crash landing in Vilnius. However, the incident closely resembled an emergency landing Sunday when the landing gear failed as an SAS Q400 touched down in Aalborg, Denmark, injuring five of the people aboard.