Examination of Engine Gas Generator Fairing Panels


Boeing 747-438, VH-OJJ


Examination of Engine Gas Generator Fairing PanelsOn 24 April 2001, a Boeing 747-400, VH-OJJ, experienced the loss of both left and right combustion fairing panels from the number three engine during take-off on a flight from Sydney to Los Angeles.

The fairing panels were ejected forcefully from the bypass duct of the engine, causing minor localised damage to the duct internal surfaces and the trailing edge of the centre wing flap section.

Examination by the Technical Analysis unit showed the damage to be consistent with fairing mis-installation, whereby the hooks on the right panel were not engaged with the respective socket pins of the upper fairing. This then permitted the free movement of the fairing sections to a point where they were caught by the bypass airflow and forcefully ejected.

The examination did not identify any defects in manufacture or maintenance of the fairing mounts or latches that could have contributed to the release.

Neville R. Blyth
Senior Transport Safety Investigator
Technical Analysis

Publication date: 24 April 2001
Last update 23 November 2010