By: AirTravellerPH Staff
Three South Korean airlines have grounded nine Boeing 737NG aircraft after inspections revealed cracks at the pickle-fork area of the aircraft, as announced by the South Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport (MOLIT). The pickle-fork area is the region of the airframe that connects the wing to the fuselage. Five 737s beling to Korean Air, three to Jin air, and one to Jeju Air.
Based on a report by Ch-Aviation, an analysis of Flightradar24 data shows that Korean Air has five inactive 737-900s. The airline operates a total of nine 737-800, sixteen 737-900, six 737-900ER, and a single 737-700BBJ. Its subsidiary, Jin Air, has ground four of twenty two 737-800.
MOLIT has reported that 42 out of the total 150 737NGs operated by South Korean airlines have been inspected.
Meanwhile, Irish low-cost carrier Ryanair have repositioned two Boeing 737-800s to Victorville presumeably for pickle-fork repairs. The did not give any comment as to the reason of the repositioning.
On October 2, 2019, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) ordered the inspection of all Boeing 737NGs which have already accumulated 30,000 flight cycles. The remaining 737s have to be inspected prior to the accumulation of 22,600 flight cycles.