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TSB issues safety recommendations to improve rudder inspections on Airbus aircraft
27 March 2006

The TSB of Canada released two Aviation Safety Recommendations following the incident in which an Airbus A310-300 lost its rudder after leaving Varadero, Cuba in March 2005. As part of the ongoing investigation, information from post-occurrence fleet inspections suggests that the current inspection program for Airbus composite rudders might not ensure the timely detection of defects. Moreover, the recent discovery that delamination could grow undetected and the increasing age of the composite rudders suggest that increased attention is warranted. The TSB is therefore recommending that the Department of Transport and the European Aviation Safety Agency, in coordination with other involved regulatory authorities and industry, urgently develop and implement an inspection program that will allow early and consistent detection of damage to the rudder assembly of aircraft equipped with this type of rudder. (TSB)