United Airlines announced it was grounding all 24 of the Boeing 777 airliners in its fleets, and the Japanese airline regulatory agency order all 777s to be pulled from service, after a 777-200 plane lost parts of its engine after taking off from Denver International Airport, the Guardian reports.
Between Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airlines, Japan has 32 777s flying in its domestic fleet. It specifically called for airlines to ground planes using the Pratt & Whitney PW4000 engine.
The National Transportation Safety Board announced Sunday that its preliminary findings determined that two of the fan blades in the engine that broke apart had been cracked, causing the major malfunction. Parts rained down on a Colorado neighborhood, but luckily no one on the ground was injured. The plane circled back to DIA and landed safely.
“We reviewed all available safety data following yesterday’s incident,” the FAA said in a statement. “Based on the initial information, we concluded that the inspection interval should be stepped up for the hollow fan blades that are unique to this model of engine, used solely on Boeing 777 airplanes.”