The FAA is proposing a $275,000 civil penalty against Pinnacle Airlines of Memphis for allegedly operating a Bombardier CRJ900 on 11 flights without all required parts fitted. According to the FAA, Pinnacle mechanics failed to replace a part required in the approved aircraft maintenance manual when they replaced the aircraft’s right engine. A source close to the Pinnacle flight crew told AIN on condition of anonymity that the missing part was the second engine mount used to hold the powerplant in place.
On a leg between Atlanta and Belize, the source said, Pinnacle’s dispatch team ordered the crew to return the aircraft to Atlanta with no reason given. Because of deteriorating weather in Atlanta, the crew suggested a different diversion point, but was told the landing airport needed to be a Pinnacle maintenance base. The crew landed safely at Knoxville, Tenn. The crew did not learn the specifics of the maintenance issue until after landing.
The 11 flights took place on Oct. 25, 26 and 27, 2010.
Since Pinnacle is under Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, the notice of proposed civil penalty is not a demand for payment. The FAA filed the document as part of its proof of claim in the case.