AVweb

On Thursday, the U.S. Transportation Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) said it will conduct an audit of the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA’s) oversight of United Airlines maintenance procedures.

In a statement, the watchdog agency cited “recent safety events” at United as reason for the audit noting, its objective is to assess the FAA’s measures in addressing maintenance non-compliances and violations within the airline.

This year, a series of safety incidents, including an aircraft losing a tire during takeoff and another involving “stuck” rudders, have propelled the carrier into media headlines. Following the safety incidents, United CEO Scott Kirby released a statement reassuring customers the events were unrelated but emphasized they have sharpened the company’s focus on safety.

Meanwhile, the OIG has said it has conducted a number of audit reports and recommendations concerning FAA oversight of air carrier maintenance over the past five years at airlines such as Allegiant Air, Southwest Airlines, and American Airlines. Additionally, the OIG says it is currently conducting a similar evaluation at SkyWest Airlines.

The agency says it plans to begin its audit later this month and will visit United’s maintenance hubs in Chicago, Houston, and San Francisco.

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