IndiGo, GoAir cancel 65 flights as planes with faulty Pratt & Whitney engines grounded by DGCA

Budget carriers IndiGo and GoAir cancelled 65 flights today after the country's aviation regulator DGCA grounded 11 of their A320Neo planes with faulty Pratt & Whitney engines (See: DGCA grounds 11 Airbus aircraft over IndiGo's mid-air engine failur).

While IndiGo cancelled 47 of its 1,000 flights per day, GoAir said it had cancelled 18 flights.

IndiGo announced the cancellations on its website , but said the affected passengers have been given the option to either choose another flight at no additional cost or cancel their booking and get a full refund without any cancellation charges.

"IndiGo has cancelled certain flights due to the grounding of our aircraft further to the DGCA directions which has been issued in the interest of safety," the airline said.

"While we understand that this may cause inconvenience to some of our passengers, given that we have multiple flights to the same destination, we are proactively re-accommodating all our affected passengers on other flights," it added.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) cracked cracked down on ircraft with the faulry Pratt & Whitney engine series, after an IndiGo flight bound for Lucknow diverted to Ahmedabad within 40 minutes of takeoff airborne due to a mid-air engine failure yesterday.

The Airbus 320 Neo-engine powered aircraft was carrying 186 passengers on board.

After observing that there have been 69 Pratt and Whitney engine failures as of September 15, and that the number of cases crossed 100, the DGCA grounded nine IndiGo and three GoAir planes with Pratt and Whitney engines yesterday.

IndiGo has a 40-per cent market share, while GoAir has 10 per cent.

Last year, DGCA had ordered detailed inspection of 21 Airbus 320neo planes with IndiGo and GoAir that are equipped with Pratt & Whitney engines, which have been frequently facing technical glitches.

India's largest airline IndiGo, has had to replace Pratt & Whitney engines on its 32 A320 Neo aircraft at least 69 times in the period May 2016-November 2017.

In February European plane maker Airbus SE warned of new problems with the Pratt & Whitney engines on its A320neo planes, prompting European air safety officials to issue emergency restrictions (See: Airbus warns of new Pratt & Whitney engine problem).