The FAA moved quickly on an NTSB recommendation and issued an emergency airworthiness directive (AD) late Thursday requiring inspection of Eclipse 500 throttle quadrants. Eclipse apparently moved quickly, too, and reports indicated all the aircraft were in compliance within a day of the AD's issuance.The AD was issued in response to an incident on June 5 when Eclipse N612KB experienced a throttle failure while on approach to Chicago Midway, resulting in maximum uncontrolled thrust from both Pratt and Whitney Canada PW601F turbofan engines. According to the AD, the pilot firewalled the throttles during a windshear encounter and pushed them past their limits. "...the pilot applied full throttle using enough force against the forward stops to exceed the design throttle position signal maximum range. The associated fault mode held the engine thrust settings at the last known throttle position, which was maximum," the AD says. The aircraft had accumulated 238 hours and 192 cycles since new. The pilots flying the aircraft referenced its handbook and elected to shut down one engine. However, when that engine was shut down, the other engine rolled back to idle power with no response to throttle settings. The pilots declared an emergency and landed without injury to themselves or the two passengers aboard. Subsequent test of the replacement throttle quadrant caused an "R ENG CONTROL FAIL" message to appear on the crew alerting system display. As a result, the NTSB Thursday announced its recommendation to the FAA to inspect all Eclipse 500 throttle quadrants and address the lack of procedures for that failure.
The AD adopts the NTSB recommendations and requires all Eclipse 500s to be checked to ensure that pushing the throttle to the stop will not result in engine control failure. Any units that fail are to be replaced. It also requires flight manual amendments to include procedures to deal with this kind of emergency. NTSB Chairman Mark V. Rosenker said, "This incident demonstrated a technical safety-of-flight issue that we believe needs immediate attention." Some 200 Eclipse 500's have so far been delivered, according to the NTSB, which considers it "still a new aircraft model." The safety board is continuing its investigation.