Air Follies

Tales of snafus and sloppiness

Public confidence in airline safety, already shaky, got another pair of rough jolts last week. First the Federal Aviation Administration asked carriers to inspect 330 Boeing 747 jumbo jets now in operation for possible fuel leaks that could cause fires in the cargo hold. The directive came after several serious complaints from Japan Air Lines and British Airways about quality- control problems in Boeing planes were made public. Then the FAA announced a sweeping investigation of Texas Air, the largest U.S. airline company (with 20% of the nation's air traffic). The agency has launched a new search for safety violations at...

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