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Alaska Airlines: Note on wing 'not the best approach'

(CNN) -- It's not the kind of view you want from the window seat: a damaged wing flap with a handwritten note on it saying "we know about this," with an arrow pointing to the area in question. ( More...

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scottgounaud 12
This isn't damage, folks. It's a Boeing-approved repair for previous flap delamination on older 737-800s. We got the word at my airline last year these repairs would start showing up, and that both sides of the jet did not necessarily have to match.

Bad idea on the note; worse that no one seems to know that as far as Boeing is concerned this jet is good to go.
SootBox 12
I'd put a Band-Aid on it just for giggles...
Duck tape would be fun, too.
Maybe the Ductape maker should make rolls with band-aids printed on them. Flesh tone or Aluminum?
Ron271 6
Seems okay to me!
onjuku20 4
Actually a color coded mark would be better. When I accept an aircraft, it may have many of these "D" items that will be corrected at the next C check. This would alert me that the item has been MEL'd and I need not deal with it.
Jason Rhew 4
I think it's funny :)
JetMech24 4
As many on here have said, this aircraft is perfectly good to fly, this repair is very common. The note was a great idea, it prevents other crews from writing it up over and over, and also prevents an unknowing pax from reporting that a corner of the flap is missing. This aircraft probably went on MANY flights before one idiot makes a big deal of it on a dumb website, using the user name "Boeing247" but has NO idea about Boeing aircraft. Stupidity is one the rise in this country and is being flat-out accepted.
TWA55 4
Boy, real news worthy, Good job CNN LOL, Maybe some investigation would help...What!
we used to circle those type of defects with grease pencils andlet the plane fly until next phase not a big deal
Mustafa Baskan 3
Maintenance crew just having a bit of fun..
Michael Fuquay 0
Unfortunately, they will continue the fun in the unemployment line. As tightly wound airlines are these days with "procedures" and "regulations", I wouldn't be surprised if someone got the boot over this.
Mustafa Baskan 1
I agree it was a stupid thing to do - only funny as well. Well maybe not for the passengers :S
Peter Rabyk 2
KC-135s & C-17s mostly.
toolguy105 2
I think the got the message across. Personally I would have put the note on the underside of the wing where passengers would not see it. I actually like the idea for depending on how long before the part can be changed the note in the form may not be seen as it may be several days and many flights back.

[This poster has been suspended.]

Matt Kladder 4
Safety is always a number 1 priority, but this damage was not a safety problem proven by the fact that the aircraft will still fly commercially until repaired in october. This type of repair probably takes awhile and to take it out of service before planned for something that could wait wouldn't be cost effective. Every airplane is scheduled out of service every so often for major maintenance, they can fix the small non safety critical stuff then as well

[This poster has been suspended.]

jgoedker 1
And like NWA didn't do similar things! I retired from there also. If your posts are implying this wouldn't happen there, you have long decieved yourself.
skyken 0
Now I understand. You may have given me a transpac jumpseat in my time before I retired. Glad I didn't berate you with my comment. You never know who you're going to run into or when!
Isia Maria 1
So is this cosmetic damage? Like in a car when a bit of the bumper cover is missing?

As in it doesn't effect the operation of the vehicle or it's safety but it looks bad. I get the feeling that a certain % of bits could be missing/dented on planes before things become safety issues. Passengers would freak out if they saw too many bits chipped and dented though. I know I'd be a bit worried if I looked out the window and saw a piece missing from the flaps.

I wonder how much the cosmetic repairs make up in maintenance costs?
skyken 1
You would be surprised. Just to paint an airliner would cost what a new home costs. All the old paint has to be removed first with approved chemicals that are then caught in a hazmat trap and then disposed of. Critical parts are created by the manufacturer, tested and checked before they are sent to the airline (the part is actually stamped with the ID of the tester and inspector.
skyken 2
Because on every aircraft there is an acceptable amount of "damage" which an airplane can have without it being un-airworthy. If there is a scratch on a window would you ground the aircraft? It's not perfect. What about an acceptable depth nick in a prop blade on a Cessna, would you not fly it? The problem in aviation is that the passengers do not know very much about the aircraft, how it flies, the sounds and equipment that are used, nor the effort put forth by the pilots to have a safe and enjoyable flight.
Henry Audet 1
Years ago (1968 I think), I took a flight from Ft. Lauderdale to Freeport in the Bahamas on a now defunct airline (Mackey). It was a prop job, DC 6 I think. As I sitting in my seat I was gazing out at the wing and saw a big circle, about 6 feet across, whith "CRACK" written beside it. Sort of gives you confidence in the airline, doesn't it?
Ethan Qualle 1
michaelrudo 1
thats a thing I want every airline to adopt I bet if that happend at IAH for United airlines the WHOLE AIRPORT would be supper quiet
Peter Rabyk 1
Exactly, politics has not a thing to do with it. I'm sure a conservative or anyone else might do a doubletake on the note on the flap.
Ev Butler 1
Back when the USAF was using C9As for aeromedical transports, I has a window seat over the wing. Someone has written in large letters "LEAK" and drew an arrow to a point on the wing surface. I didn't see any liquid flow but my eyes never left that area on the flight from Kelly AFB to Patrick AFB. Funny? I don't know. Attention getting? You betcha!

BTW, what is the USAF using now that they have put those DC9s out to pasture?
C-17 Globemaster III, the C-130 Hercules and the KC-135 Stratotanker. All are the aircraft used for air evacuations.
Ev Butler 1
My finger found some "s"s instead of "d"s in my former post. Sorry about the misspellings.
sparkie624 1
It would appear (as hard as it is to believe) that their engineering approved this discrepancy for revenue flight. I am sure that so that the flight crew would know of such an item a head of time there is a placarding procedure, however as stated by Alaska Airlines, the placarding was not an approved method...

I too feel this is funny, but working Maintenance Control, I worked a/c damage. I would NEVER revenue flight with this damage, but I may ferry it to a maintenance base.
Daniel Bailey 4
It's a Boeing fix to a flap delamination problem on some 737NGs. The flap shown has had the fix and is good to go.
JetMech24 2
It is right out of the 737 SRM, not engineering (Boeing engineering added the repair to the SRM if you wish to BLAME someone). There was no placard because the "damage" has been removed and the repair is complete.
skyken 1
So you would refute the damage with the manufacturer Boeing by expressing that they are wrong and you are correct and therefore you would override the manufacturer and ground the aircraft for a smooth 50 cent pie shaped irregularity?
Ev Butler 1
Peter, are you saying that the USAF is using KC-135s for medical transports?
Peter Rabyk 2
Yes, they do.
damian miller 1
That is so 'Bush Alaska' I would expect to see something like that on a Cessna 207 flying out of Bethel!! LOL
Thomas Clark 1
Be a little more professional about It, like

Damage inspected and found to be OK for further flight per SRM **-***-*** (STRUCTURE REPAIR MANUEL).
skyken 1
Was entered in the aircraft log book and signed off. The problem was someone wrote a comment on the wing in the view of a pax.
Paul Slonaker 1
The dude narating on the video is a dork. I have been flying over 32 years and this is in the Mickey Mouse classification for damage. In other isnt going to make a lick of difference. The passenger that took the pic and made the fuss over it is no doubt a tree huggin Liberal. No if it was discovered that a compressor blabe looked like this...THEN I would be concerned, but apparantly the maintenance crew feels as I this plane till October for its inspection...then we will fix it. I really like the idea of putting a band-aid on the spot. That would have really got the Liberals going.
Jonathan Trunz 2
How (why) you turned this into something 'Liberal' is beyond me. Watch FOX much?
sounddoc 1
As a CFI and a "tree-huggin liberal", I would have chuckled at this if it was out my window.
Sam Buhagiar 1
How funny, a tree hugging liberal. Perhaps, we should chop all the trees down, so those liberals can leave. By the way, thanks for the mess, W left this country. You probably listen to that OxyContin addict.
Andrew Ladouceur -1
Fly Private!
Peter Rabyk 0
Just a suggestion for the next time, put the note on the BOTTOM of the flap!!!
Brian Wilson 0
Just use duct tape, that will keep there.
nicholas weber -1
I wouldn't be surprised if another investigation is launched into Alaska's maintenance procedures. If serious shortcomings are found then expect them to go out of business.
David Haft -1
This coming from an airline who can't fix jack screws on DC-9's, Where everyone died in the crash into the ocean off the coast of California.
arthur wolk -2
What's all the hubbub about? I am sure the Minimum Equipment List on the B737 says if you have most of the wing remaining, it's okay to fly. Not!
While this minor missing section would have no effect on the flying qualities of the aircraft it is disturbing that we have gotten to the point that an airplane can start looking like a rat nibbled on a piece of cheese and we are prepared to say no sweat.
My airplane doesn't fly unless it is 100%.
I recommend the same to the airlines before someone gets hurt.
skyken 1
Do you have a MEL for your aircraft? There's a reason for it. The reason for it is that transport category aircraft are built to the rigors of Part 25 of the FARs but light aircraft are not. That's why there's an MEL and approved procedures by the manufacturers for this type of irregularity. I'm sure you were jesting about the wing statement.
Michael Hogan -9
I wont be flying "fat chance" airlines any time soon.Do they give out complimentary parachutes instead of drinks? Or do you get offered clean underwear if you get that seat?
fundiks -3
You'd be amazed at what is allowed as "OK to go" which probably is but sometimes I swear maintenance, and FAA are just rolling the dice!! Remember a plane that sits isn't making money.
JetMech24 1
It's mostly up to the Boeing engineers, then the FAA says "yay' or "nay".
joel wiley 0
"A plane that sits isn't making money."
A plane that augers in doesn't either, at least for the airline.
nicholas weber -7
Alaska Airlines are at it again! They already lost an a/c because they never bothered to do maintenance on the stabaliser jack screw.
If they were a UK airline they would now be facing a very large fine just for displaying the message!!
goldfoot 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Dear Flight're doing it wrong.

A well intentioned flight mechanic for Alaska Airlines leaves a hand-written note on the flap pointing out a missing chunk of metal. The flight crew may have appreciated it, but not the best way to make passengers feel secure...


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