Squawk Box

February 2003 Issue

Turbo Troubles

Turbocharged engines not tolerant of exhaust system faults

The following information is derived from the FAA’s Service Difficulty Reports and Aviation Maintenance Alerts.


A recent fatal accident of a single-engine aircraft involved the apparent separation of the tailpipe assembly from the turbocharger, which allowed hot exhaust gases to be expelled into the engine compartment.

The pilot reported smoke and fire in the cockpit before the aircraft crashed short of the airport, killing both aboard. The NTSB investigation is targeting an exhaust clamp failure due to fatigue cracks found in the turbocharger to tailpipe clamp. A review of the FAA Service Difficulty Report (SDR) database reveals similar incidents involving this clamp as...

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