Europe’s safety regulator has revoked a directive that aimed to tighten time limits for inspecting Airbus A321 converted freighters for potential fatigue cracks in the center wing-box area.
The directive, issued on 12 September, had been a response to stress and load calculations performed by conversion specialist EFW for A321 freighters.
These calculations were initiated following an earlier directive impacting conventional A321s.
However, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has determined that the formula used to establish compliance time for checks on the freighters was deemed “not correct.”
Following a comprehensive review conducted by EFW and Airbus, it has been confirmed that the increased loads for the converted freighter result in “only negligible” reduction in compliance time compared to the original A321 directive.
Consequently, EASA asserts that the potential fatigue-crack condition, specifically in the vicinity of the center wing-box rear lower spar junction, has been adequately addressed by its prior instruction to operators. As a result, EASA has rescinded the order for recalculating compliance times for freighters.