The Beginning of the End for the Concorde?

Date:         16 Mar 2001 05:56:32 
From:         johnmcgrew@aol.com (JohnMcGrew)
Organization: AOL http://www.aol.com
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First the fleet-wide discovery of wing cracks, and then today's Paris crash.

A few months ago, 2-inch cracks were found in the rear-most wings of the entire
BA seven-plane fleet.  At that point, untrasonic testing was conducted, the
cracks determined not to be structural, and the fleet was allowed to remain in
service.  The French were advised.

But perhaps it was worse than identified.

Last week, the crack on one plane had grown to 2.6 inches, forcing the
grounding of the plane.

As for the rest of the BA fleet, it was determined that passengers were never
at risk, and that the six aircraft still in use remain completely safe, despite
the cracks.

In today's crash, at this point it appears as though there was some sort of
failure resulting in both loss of power and control.  Could it be long before
the entire fleet is grounded, perhaps for good?

John