Loose Paint + Jet Engines = $50 Million

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Boeing last week had to replace 10 brand-new jet engines on 737s ready for customer delivery, after tiny glass beads were found inside the engines. The beads, the size of sugar granules, were mixed into paint for reflective runway stripes that were repainted early this month, and somehow were ingested into the engines during test runs. Mechanics could see the beads in the engine intakes when they shone a flashlight in, The Seattle Times reported on Saturday. The county is removing the paint and will replace it with glass-free striping, the Times said. The damaged engines, worth $5 million each, have been replaced with new ones, and are being evaluated to see if they will be repaired or scrapped. "The process that they use for painting taxiways and runways is the same process they use nationwide," FAA spokesman Allen Kenitzer told the Times. "We're trying to figure out why things were ingested here and we haven't seen it anywhere else."