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FAA ANNOUNCES CIVIL PENALTY AGAINST DELTA FOR SAFETY VIOLATIONS

 WASHINGTON, Nov. 25 ~PRNewswire~ -- The Federal Aviation Administration today announced a $2 million civil penalty settlement against Delta Airlines for violations of safety rules and regulations, primarily in the area of aircraft maintenance.
 In a consent order, the FAA accepted payment of $1.5 million and suspended the remaining $500,000 of the penalty, pending Delta's compliance with terms of the order.
 FAA Administrator Thomas C. Richards said he was pleased with Delta's cooperative attitude and aggressive actions to correct deficiencies. "The airline is now operating in accordance with the FAA's safety standards. But FAA expects full accountability for any air carrier's failure to comply with federal air regulations.
 The Delta inspection was carried out under provisions of the FAA's National Air Carrier Safety Inspection Program (NASIP) and was completed in February 1991. The NASIP inspection -- which is an in- depth inspection conducted by specially selected FAA employees who normally do not oversee the airline -- uncovered 20 violations of FAA regulations. In addition, another 42 maintenance violations were documented by FAA offices other than the NASIP team, some as recently as last summer.
 In determining the amount of the penalty, the FAA said it had taken into consideration Delta's positive response to the FAA findings, prompt action by the airline to correct deficiencies, and extensive improvements completed or planned by Delta, including an updated tracking and control system for handling FAA Airworthiness Directives, and revisions in its quality assurance program.
 "The airline inspection system is working the way it should. Defects have been corrected and improvements put in place to ensure that there will be no threat to the public safety," Richards said.
 Violations uncovered by the inspection team include:
 -- Operating an aircraft on 63 flights without complying with an FAA order to inspect the aircraft for cracks in the rudder control section.
 -- Operating seven aircraft on 138 flights without complying with an FAA order designed to prevent binding of the aileron controls.
 -- Operating a Boeing 727's auxiliary power unit 3,229 hours beyond its normally scheduled visit to the maintenance shop.
 Other violations uncovered outside the scope of the investigation ranged from dispatching a flight with an inoperative air speed indicator to operating an aircraft without placards warning passengers against tampering with the smoke detectors.
 -0- 11~25~92
 ~CONTACT: Paul Steucke of the Federal Aviation Administration, 202-267-8521~


CO: Federal Aviation Administration; Delta Airlines ST: District of Columbia IN: AIR SU: EXE

DC -- DC023 -- 1642 11~25~92 16:29 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 25, 1992
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