American Airlines cancelled almost hundred flights Thursday as the carrier adds seat locking mechanisms to 48 Boeing 757 aircraft to keep seats from coming loose mid-flight.
The Fort Worth-based carrier said mechanics will be adding a second locking device to secure seats on the aircraft. The work should be completed by Saturday, said David Campbell, vice president of safety. The original “seat lock plunger mechanism” had a small pin which in some instances was failing to keep the seat in place.
“We believe over time normal wear and tear, general debris such as soda spills, coffee, things like that got into the mechanism and it didn’t allow that pin to reset,” Campbell said. Mechanics found 22 out of 5,184 locking mechanisms that were not working properly.
American is working with the Federal Aviation Administration, who has approved the second locking mechanism, Campbell said, adding that the FAA is also conducting an investigation to see if other carriers that operate Boeing 757s may have the same issue with the device.