Regionals Update: CRJ700 fuel leaks lead to emergency AD

 - May 15, 2008, 8:37 AM

Transport Canada last month notified the FAA of a potentially dangerous fuel system defect in Bombardier’s new CRJ700 regional jet, prompting the U.S. agency to issue an emergency AD for the model. According to Transport Canada, CRJ700s may experience uncommanded fuel transfer between the wing tanks and the center tank, creating a condition in which the center tank can overfill and leak. The problem could also cause fuel to leak from the center tank vent system, resulting in fuel starvation. Bombardier said it would correct the problem, apparently caused by a loose fuel transfer coupling, on all 31 CRJ700s in service by the end of last month. The AD requires operators to increase normal mission fuel requirements by 3,000 lb to compensate for potential fuel leaks, and to limit operation of the airplane to flights within 60 min of a “suitable” alternative airport.