UPDATED: EASA issues safety advice for Trent engines

November 11: In the wake of the uncontained failure of a Rolls-Royce Trent 900 turbofan engine on a Qantas Airbus A380 last week, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has issued an Emergency Airworthiness Directive (EAD), making it mandatory for airlines operating A380 aircraft equipped with Trent 900 engines to perform repetitive inspections; a first one within a maximum of ten flights, then after every 20 flights.
EASA says that the incident investigation has shown that “an oil fire in the high pressure and intermediate pressure structure cavity of the engine may have caused the failure of the Intermediate Pressure Turbine disc”.
Singapore Airlines has changed engines on three of its Airbus A380s on the recommendation of Rolls-Royce as safety measure after traces of oil were identified. Qantas’s fleet of Superjumbos remains grounded and says “A380 aircraft will not return to service until there is complete certainty that the fleet can operate safely.”
November 12: Rolls-Royce says that the engine failure was “confined to a specific component in the turbine area of the engine. This caused an oil fire, which led to the release of the intermediate pressure turbine disc.”
The company will be implementing a programme of replacement parts for all Trent 900 engines.