Four U.S. Airlines Find Uncertified Engine Parts

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Delta Air Lines is the latest North American carrier to find bogus parts in aircraft engines. The company announced this week that as many as 21 engines in its fleet have fraudulently certified parts supplied by AOG Technics, a British firm that forged certification paperwork for components it supplied to CFM Internationals for engines used in Boeing 737s and A320s. “Delta has been informed by one of our engine service providers that a small number of engines they overhauled for us contain certain parts that do not meet documentation requirements,” the company said in a statement. “Working with the overhaul provider, we are in the process of replacing those parts and remain in compliance with all FAA guidelines.”

American, United and Southwest have also found the bogus parts, and Canadian carrier WestJet says at least one of its 737s had an AOG-supplied component. A British judge has ordered AOG to turn over all its records relating to the fraudulent documents after GE and Safran sued the company. All the airlines said the search for the fake parts has not affected operations and they’ve been replaced on all in-service aircraft.

Russ Niles
Russ Niles is Editor-in-Chief of AVweb. He has been a pilot for 30 years and joined AVweb 22 years ago. He and his wife Marni live in southern British Columbia where they also operate a small winery.

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6 COMMENTS

  1. Is this an engineering/manufacturing issue, or a documentation problem? The use of terms like “bogus” and “fraudulent” implies substandard parts quality (and thus a safety issue), yet the rest of the article focuses on their provenance, which may be only a paperwork matter. Is this a safety-of-flight concern, or administrative lapse?

    This breathless article conflates the two, especially since all suspect parts have “been replaced on all in-service aircraft”. I suspect the latter, in which case, can we now expect breathless reports on airlines’ suspect tax filings or lobbying activities?

    • Breathless? Never been accused of that before. Anyhow, the source of the parts is unknown and that’s the problem. AOG allegedly forged the paperwork and since that’s the foundation of aircraft certification it warrants some attention.

  2. Certified parts with ANY forged or deliberately misapplied paper tail is fraud. That’s a given.

    To Aviatrexx point, I wonder what is the nature of the fraud?

    Did they:
    * Take new certified parts where the paperwork was lost and then fabricated replacement paperwork?
    * Refinish a used part as overhauled?
    * Have Uncle Earnie making turbine blades at his home shop and fabricated inspection markings and paperwork?

    I like Russ’s articles, just seems like on this one adjectives “Fake” and “bogus” are headline getters. With the information known, perhaps “suspect” might better fit given Russ’s comment “the source of the parts is unknown and that’s the problem”. No one has alleged Uncle Earnie is making the parts out back.

  3. Worked at PHI in the late ’80’s and this reminds me of the parts out of Hueys that were left in Vietnam which eventually turned up in Bell products used by some operators to save maintenance costs and which came with fraudulent or unverifiable documentation.

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