FAA orders emergency inspections of Sikorsky S-92 helicopters

By Kevin Zimmerman

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Sikorsky S-92 helicopters must undergo inspections for every 10 hours in service under the terms of a new emergency airworthiness directive issued by the Federal Aviation Administration. The directive followed an alert service bulletin issued by Sikorsky that was prompted by a Dec. 28 incident in which an S-92 lost tail-rotor control during a landing on an offshore helideck in the North Sea.

Inspections following that and similar incidents found possible issues with at least four S-92 helicopters in the offshore fleet. Sikorsky, based in Stratford, said that “a small number of parts are being returned to Sikorsky for additional evaluation,” adding that “these findings do not constitute failure of the bearing.

“We appreciate the FAA’s mandate of the inspection of the S-92 tail rotor pitch change shaft assembly as it supports the continued airworthiness of the S-92 fleet and our top priority, safety,” the company said.

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