On 13 July 2007 at about 1420 Western Standard Time, a Boeing Company 717-200 aircraft, registered VH-NXK, was being operated on a scheduled passenger service from Newman, WA to Perth, WA, when the right engine failed during the climb to cruise. The flight crew disconnected the autopilot, actioned the Engine Fire/Severe Damage checklist, and commenced decent to flight level 140. The flight crew broadcast a PAN to air traffic services and advised the cabin crew and passengers that the aircraft would be returning to Newman Aerodrome. The aircraft landed safely at Newman Aerodrome.
The operator's maintenance organisation carried out an internal inspection of the failed engine and found that all the blades on the high pressure turbine stage disc had been sheared off.
A subsequent investigation by the engine manufacturer revealed that a high pressure turbine stage 1 blade had separated from the blade disc below the blade platform due to low-cycle fatigue causing the remaining HPT1 blades to separate from the disc. This led to the subsequent engine in-flight shutdown. This failure was similar to a number of previous engine failures that have occurred since November 2003.
The engine was removed from the aircraft for shipment to the engine manufacturer for investigation and repair. A serviceable engine was fitted and the aircraft was returned to service.
At the time of the incident the aircraft operator was engaged in replacing all the LIP 3 standard of HPT1 blades in their fleet engines with the new HPT1 blade.
|Date:||13 July 2007||Investigation status:||Completed|
|Time:||0620 UTC||Investigation level:||Systemic - click for an explanation of investigation levels|
|Location:||56km SSW Newman|
|State:||Western Australia||Occurrence type:||Engine failure or malfunction|
|Release date:||06 April 2009||Occurrence category:||Incident|
|Report status:||Final||Highest injury level:||None|
|Aircraft manufacturer||The Boeing Company|
|Type of operation||Air Transport High Capacity|
|Damage to aircraft||Nil|
|Departure point||Newman, WA|